Re: C++ and I are getting divorced.

  • From: "Bill Gallik" <BillGallik@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 28 Jul 2010 07:35:18 -0500

C and C++ are extremely powerful programming languages; C far more so than C++. C was invented at AT&T Bell Labs as a "low level" high level language that would permit the programmer to get very cozy with the internals of the computer. This was intentional as program development at Bell Labs was deployed to provide the software that would manage and operate the nation's telecommunication networks. And, of course, not only our networks but those of Canada and other countries as well.


This is manifest in two fundamental switching systems; Number 4 Electronic Switching System (4ESS) and the Number 5 Electronic Switching System (5Ess). 4ESS is the application that manages the long distance network and calls; 5ESS is the application that manages local networks and calls. Considering the volume of data processing involved in these systems the programming code and resulting executables needed to be as efficient as possible while not bogging down software development with assembler. C was born out of that requirement. Where the notion came from that C++ was any kind of improvement is completely beyond me because it is not a good language for telecommunications software development. But I think that C++ -- as an "object oriented language" -- was construed in response to the mad dash to OOP (I personally don't believe that the acronym for "Object Oriented Programming" spells out "OOPs"). ;-)

As one of the jokes passing around at AT&T/Lucent explains (I paraphrase here); "C is a programming language that will gladly permit the programmer to shoot himself/herself in the foot, C++ does just the same except that it will automatically generate 10 copies of executable code to shoot the programmer in the foot."
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Holland's Person, Bill
E-Mail: BillGallik@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
- The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese!
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