Random C comments

utzoo!decvax!ittvax!sii!mem utzoo!decvax!ittvax!sii!mem
Wed Oct 27 23:11:24 AEST 1982

A few random C comments.  Sorry, braces are involved in a couple of them.

There was a suggestion that braces be hidden since braces are only
significant to a machine, not humans.  Alignment of braces is done
BECAUSE braces are significant to the machine, and the human has to
make sure he can understand what the machine is going to make of them.

End of braces.  I think.

All this talk about 24-line screens leads me to wonder, how many
(hmm, I hope nobody thinks I really want to know HOW MANY) people
compose their programs on the screen?  I, if you care, tend to
do my organization on paper, writing pseudo-programs which if 
simple get translated on the screen, if not get translated to
almost-code on paper.  With braces.

There was a comment which said that C-source formatters aren't
nice things because, among other things, they have to be kept up
to the language, whichever one you have.  Perhaps this is a
job for the compiler?  (An aside.. I have thought it a deficiency
that C doesn't give you a compiler-generated listing, like PL/I
or some PASCALs (ugh, I actually refered to PASCAL).)  While I'm
dreaming about compiler features, another nice thing to have a C
compiler do would be to translate all the nice structure, union,
and maybe global variable definitions to the local assembler
language equivalents, so as to make C/assembler interfacing
easy and maintainable.  (Another aside, I had to take a few days
a couple of weeks ago to write a program which does that...) 

Mark E. Mallett

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