My two //build/ talks online


My two talks from last week’s //build/ conference are online.

My personal favorite is Writing Modern C++ Code: How C++ Has Evolved Over the Years. The thesis is simple: Modern ISO Standard C++ code is clean, safe, and fast. C++ has got a bad rap over the years, partly earned, but that’s history. This talk is a “welcome to modern C++” for programmers who may never have seen C++ before, or are familiar only with older and more difficult C++.

If you’re already a modern C++ developer you may be thinking, “but I do most of those things already, why is there a whole talk on this at a Microsoft conference?” Because as interest and use of Standard C++ is heating up again, it’s important to ensure that people have a good experience as they return to C++, or turn to it for the first time. Thus we sometimes have called this the “happy path” talk — designed to show the simple happy path through modern C++ that avoids needless pitfalls.

My other talk was Using the Windows Runtime From C++. This is Windows 8-specific and talks about the “foreign object model” language extensions used by Visual C++ 11 to talk to the new native ABI-safe WinRT types. These extensions should be used sparingly, only on the thin module boundaries around otherwise nice and portable Standard C++ code, and it was necessary to add them only because Standard C++ types aren’t ABI-safe and accessible safely from other languages. (If ISO C++ were to get a module system at some point that includes being able to talk about ABI-safe types on module boundaries, that would be happiness indeed!) There is also a template library called Windows Runtime C++ Template Library (WRL) that is another way to access basically the same functionality using template syntax; pick whichever you like best.

Thanks to all who attended!

My C++ and Beyond Intro: C++ Renaissance

Why C++

Channel 9 has just posted a recording of my intro talk at C++ and Beyond 2011 last month in Banff. Here’s the link: C++ and Beyond 2011: Why C++.

It’s a keynote-y talk, not a technical talk, but we felt it was important to address an important trend involving the language. The goal is to share a perspective and rationale for why of late there’s such a resurgence of interest in C++ — both across the industry, and within Microsoft.

Whether or not you agree with the perspective and rationale, I hope you enjoy it!