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Re: The future: accessing vectors, arrays, etc from C

From: Neil Jerram
Subject: Re: The future: accessing vectors, arrays, etc from C
Date: Wed, 05 Jan 2005 00:04:28 +0000
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.3) Gecko/20041007 Debian/1.7.3-5

Marius Vollmer wrote:

after some procrastination, I have more or less convinced myself to
make accessing vectors and arrays (including uniform numeric vectors
and arrays) more difficult from C.  Here is how and why.  Please

Hi Marius,

Apologies for the slow response on this. In general I think your proposal looks good, but I have two points to raise for consideration.

Firstly, I recall an old discussion between Jim and Mikael about a "leasing" interface in this area, which struck me at that time as very elegant. I've not analysed how close it is to your thoughts, or how relevant it might be, but I thought you might like to review that and consider whether it affects your thinking at all. The URLs of two relevant messages are:

Secondly, I am slightly concerned about the level of change that this means in the C API. Actually, to be precise, I'm not sure I'm bothered about the level of change per se, as I believe the current reality is that a Guile application writer has no choice but to select an available major version of Guile (e.g. 1.6) and to target their application at specifically that version; and fortunately the bugs in Guile are few enough that it is feasible to stick with an older version.

However, I wonder if perhaps we should have a more explicit and public policy on the level of change that is (i) acceptable and (ii) likely, from one major release to the next, so that developers know what to expect?

What do you (and everyone else) think?


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