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Interface design and SWIG

From: Terrel H. Shumway <tshumway_at_octavian.ICS.UCI.EDU>
Date: 2000-09-07 20:42:27 CEST

On Thu, 7 Sep 2000 10:22:35 -0700, John P Cavanaugh wrote:
> I would recommend we look at something like SWIG for doing the interface
> wrapping that way we get all the languages for free.

I agree that SWIG is the way to go to generate those bindings, but SWIG
cannot compensate for a poor interface.

I am not SWIG expert, but my experience in trying to run SWIG on xdelta tells
me that there is a lot that can be done on the C side to make the SWIG run less
painful. I am still wading through this, and will make specific recommendations
when I figure it out.

If we think "Oh, this function needs to be called from main(), so it should
have these parameters..." we get very different set of function protoypes than
if we think "How is Joe Python Programmer going to use this library to build
a higher level tool?" In general, library design is harder than program design,
but it makes your work much more useful. (e.g. zlib: How did programs do compression
before zlib? How many new systems use zlib instead?)

Think: What does this look like in IDL?

 -- Terrel
Received on Sat Oct 21 14:36:07 2006

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