And offtopic into languages again [was Re: [dev] "Note On Webkit Versions"]

From: Kamil Cholewiński <>
Date: Mon, 02 May 2016 19:44:45 +0200

On Mon, 02 May 2016, Bobby Powers <> wrote:
> Go is a _much_ simpler language than C.

And yet it still includes a fair share of insanity. The binary size is
not an effect of some random silly magic #ifdef MAKE_BULKY, it's the
effect of linking the userspace scheduler, GC, and Ken knows what else
in each and every "hello" program.

> The _implementation_ of Go is less simple, as it includes a userspace
> scheduler and low-latency GC, but I don't know how you would expect to
> add seatbelts to C or assembly and not increase _eiter_ the language
> _or_ implementation complexity.

I did not imply deriving the new hypothetical language directly from C.

I did not suggest it would be simpler or equally simple to C or Go or
whatever - while there's definitely some stuff you can cut out from C,
adding features is adding features; especially if you're talking about
making them optional.

What I did try to suggest, when calling out Go:

- I do not see a scheduler and syntax-level support for green threads,
  channels, etc as value, only baggage. It's been done as a library long
  before[1], and it was good enough - I'd even say better in few places;
  you didn't have to use reflection to alt on an array of channels.

- For a language that states as its primary goal to make programs
  simpler, it fails miserably as soon as you need to introduce custom
  abstractions. For a tiny, simple, albeit not so close-to-the-metal
  language that proves even complex custom abstractions can be powered
  by simple primitives, do check out R5RS[2]. Even C has a standard (if
  sucky) way of abstracting repetitive code: the preprocessor. Go's
  current recommendation is to either copy-paste, or push it to the
  toolchain (see Qt's MOC to get an idea of where the latter leads to).

So for the sole purpose of being a saner / safer C, and little else...
Go fails.


Sorry for the rant, I promise my next post will have PoC code in it.

Received on Mon May 02 2016 - 19:44:45 CEST

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