Noalias considered unreadable, let alone a bad idea

Alan Lee Wendt wendt at
Thu Jan 28 05:54:12 AEST 1988

In article <7181 at brl-smoke.ARPA>, gwyn at brl-smoke.ARPA (Doug Gwyn ) writes:
> The issue of difficulty in implementing the specifications correctly
> doesn't bother me much.  It is unlikely that there are more than a few
> hundred people in the world who could reasonably be expected to produce
> a high-quality C implementation anyway, and most of the ones who will
> be (or are) attempting to implement the ANSI C specifications either are
> on the Committee or have sufficient contacts with Committee members who
> can answer questions about some of the subtler points.

The issue is "difficulty of understanding the specifications", not
"difficulty of implementing them".  Right now the only people who
need to understand the specs are the implementors.  If the above
paragraph were correct, there would only have been a few hundred
volumes of K&R or Harbison/Steele sold in the world, because only
the implementors would be interested in understanding the specification.

Specifications are not just for implementors.  If the spec is
confusing Stallman, it will eventually confuse anybody who tries to
use the language.  Can I get the phone numbers of some of the members
of the committee, so that if my program blows up, I can call them up
to check on my use of "noalias"?

Alan Wendt

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