Home > C++ > Different Goals And Unfair Comparisons

Different Goals And Unfair Comparisons

At the behest of a work colleague, I revisited the Java programming language. I re-read James Gosling‘s 1995 white paper that introduced the language and I perused several Java-related wikipedia articles. Using those sources and Bjarne Stroustrup‘s “Evolving a language in and for the real world: C++ 1991-2006” paper, I developed the following side by side “design goals” lists:

In spite of these radically different design goals, people (including myself) continue to insist on comparing the languages in passionately irrational ways. If both language designs were driven by a common set of goals, then objectively valid comparisons could be made.

Java was intentionally designed from a blank sheet; unfettered from the ground up. Au contraire, C++ was intentionally designed by extending C and attempting to fix it’s short comings without breaking millions of lines of deployed code. It’s like comparing apples to oranges, dontcha think?

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