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Re: Target-specific Front-Ends? (Was: front end changes for altivec)

On Wednesday, November 28, 2001, at 11:54 , Stan Shebs wrote:

> Dale Johannesen wrote:
>>> Now I believe that we do have some leeway to update the AltiVec
>>> extension syntax, based on what I know of the size of our installed
>>> base and how the code is written.  If there is a compromise that
>>> allows us to have one version of GCC instead of three, and requires
>>> only minor edits of source (such as {} instead of () for constants),
>>> I think we will be able to get our users to adopt it.
>> I think the only way our users will adopt a change is if they have no
>> choice, and then they will resent it.  I haven't asked them, and 
>> neither
>> has Stan, I don't think, but from what I've seen they are not much
>> interested in issues of language theory.  They just want their code to
>> work, and will regard a necessary change to working code as a big minus
>> with no perceptible benefit to them.  I even sympathize; they do have
>> schedules and limited resources.
> In practice, Mac developers will get a nice long transition period.
> To use {} vs () as an example, I expect we will support both,
> eventually deprecating ().  People interested in Linux compatibility
> can start using {} right away, those who are more concerned about
> Metrowerks compat can stay with ().
> Stan

I think the fact that gcc3 code generates code that runs as fast or 
faster than other compilers will convince people to make source code 
changes. The people that use -altivec are the most performance oriented 
people, and as such, are willing to do a lot to squeeze out a few more 

Syd Polk
QA and Integration Manager, Mac OSX Development Tools
+1 408 974-0577

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