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Re: Which ObjC2.0 features are missing in the latest GCC?

From: address@hidden
Subject: Re: Which ObjC2.0 features are missing in the latest GCC?
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2019 17:04:07 +0100

> Am 22.11.2019 um 15:44 schrieb Andreas Fink <address@hidden>:
>>> This is a major advantage of Objc2.0. 
>>> I must admit it took me a while to get used to though. But at the end it 
>>> paid off a lot.
>> Well, to be precise: ARC could also be done with ObjC 1.0 as far as I see. 
>> There is IMHO no special syntax for ARC. You just remove all 
>> retain/release/autorelease from the code and the compiler is clever enough 
>> to magically make it still work.
>> So in summary, ARC alone isn't sufficiently helpful for my work to switch to 
>> ObjC 2.0 and no longer use gcc.
> The fact is that gcc can not do ARC. This is the main show stopper for gcc. 
> On the other hand, switching from gcc to clang is not a problem for 
> "traditional programming style" programmers.
> The only problem I can see is platforms which gcc supports but clang does 
> not. So the real question is are there any users who use ObjC stuff with 
> GnuStep under, lets say strange embedded systems.
> Given ObjC does not have a bright future under gcc anyway (as they have still 
> not implemented ObjC 2.0 features after like 10 years it's out now), does 
> mean it will only get worse.
> Besides that we have to consider that sticking to gcc will also hinders 
> newcomers to get involved. And this i I think is a important point.
> The developers hehre with 20 years+ experience will have no problem working 
> around non ARC stuff and going backwords because we all know the  old way.
> The youngsters out there however don't. If we want to get Gnustep into the 
> modern area, we will need to be attractive to newcomes and this means keeping 
> up with the modern API's etc. And gcc is miserably failing here. Thats the 
> main problem, not if you don't want to use ARC (which is still fine) or not. 
> Others want to use ARC but can't under GCC.
> In other words, going for clang doesnt mean ObjC 1.0 code wont run but it 
> means a lot of ObjC2.0 code will start to run.

I think the main problem here is that Nikolaus (and Riccardo) are using 
platforms where there isn’t even a recent GCC available (IIRC Riccardo called 
some time ago for keeping GCC 2.95 support — surely not for the pure fun of 
supporting such old compilers). So even fixing GCC by adding ObjC 2.0 support 
won’t satisfy some. What could be done about this? I have no idea …



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