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new diary

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johnhattan

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First, a quick plug. An old college pal of mine, Pat Down, has his own project page at www.codemoon.com. He's been dabbling in game development for as long as I've known him (14 years now, boy I'm old). He's currently working on a small project. Check it out!

FWIW, Pat contacted John M. about putting his journal entries up as a development diary. Nothing has come of it yet because they're both disillusioned ambitionless layabouts. I guess not everybody can be a dynamic captain of industry like your humble narrator. I know both of 'em personally, and I can confidently say that I can do seven things in the time it takes either of 'em to do one. They're both pathetic wannabes, but I do my best to be understanding --showering them with pity rather than scorn. No matter how much I wish it so, not everyone can be like me.




I finally got to spend a little time with my book-queue (the pile of books waiting to be read). I'm finally about one chapter away from completing The Design and Evolution of C++ by Bjarne Stroustrup. It's quite an interesting book. It's basically a chronicle of C++ --how it got started, why it looks the way it does, and why it works the way it does. I'm not just hyping things up when I say that this book is the best way for advanced C++ users to get a complete handle on the language. You'll learn what stuff is in there, why some stuff didn't get in there until years later, and what stuff was proposed and never made it in there. The book also manages to answer a lot of unanswered questions. If you ever wonder why anyone would allow such hideous constructs as blank parameter lists defaulting to void, but blank return types defaults to int, then this'll have the answer. Unfortunately, sometimes the answer is "we knew it's wrong, but it'd break old code", but at least you'll know why.

One warning, though. This isn't a storybook. While some of the history is narrative, most of it is told in code. Code that was proposed, code that shows off a language example, and code that shows a problem that needed to be solved. It's a deep book and probably not one for novices. The whole book is structured and numbered in outline form, though, so you can easily skip over some of the escoterica.

If you're one of those folks who wants to get to the bottom of C++, you realize that objects are more than just structs with functions, and you often puzzle about stuff that doesn't seem right, then this is the one to read.
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