[nSLUG] Re: C++ beginner references

Peter Cordes peter at llama.nslug.ns.ca
Sun Oct 19 19:19:56 ADT 2003

On Sun, Oct 19, 2003 at 05:21:19PM -0300, Jamie Fifield wrote:
> If I was going to write something to be cross platform capable, I
> would use the wxPython libraries myself.  Windows, MacOSX, Unix all
> with the same code and free compilers.
> Python can be OOP, and it's an excellent language, and it's got a lot
> of momentum behind it right now.

 Depending on the kind of number crunching you need to do, you might be able
to do it in python without too much overhead.  There's a python-scientific
package, and python libraries for doing numerical stuff.  They can probably
do stuff like multiplying a matrix all in one operation, so that can be
implemented in a shared library written in a lower-level language like C.
(You don't want to be looping over matrix elements and multiplying them with
python code.  That would be pretty slow compared to C, since python doesn't
have a just-in-time compiler (unless you use jpython, or something?)).  Some
genetic stuff involves probability matrices, and markov-chain stuff,
so getting a quick matrix-multiply operation could make things fast enough
to be usable with python.  Most of the open source statistical evolution
software I've seen at work was written in C or C++, though.

 Python is probably a good language to learn, but so is C if you want to be
able to understand the source for stuff you can download.  C has pointer
stuff you need to understand to make sense of what's going on sometimes.
Higher level languages don't let you do so much weird stuff with pointers,
which has advantages and disadvantages.

#define X(x,y) x##y
Peter Cordes ;  e-mail: X(peter at cor , des.ca)

"The gods confound the man who first found out how to distinguish the hours!
 Confound him, too, who in this place set up a sundial, to cut and hack
 my day so wretchedly into small pieces!" -- Plautus, 200 BC

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