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SubjectRe: typedefs and structs
Date
On Tuesday 08 November 2005 19:59, Douglas McNaught wrote:
> linas <linas@austin.ibm.com> writes:
>
> > On Tue, Nov 08, 2005 at 07:37:20PM -0500, Douglas McNaught was heard to remark:
> >>
> >> Yeah, but if you're trying to read that code, you have to go look up
> >> the declaration to figure out whether it might affect 'foo' or not.
> >> And if you get it wrong, you get silent data corruption.
> >
> > No, that is not what "pass by reference" means. You are thinking of
> > "const", maybe, or "pass by value"; this is neither. The arg is not
> > declared const, the subroutine can (and usually will) modify the contents
> > of the structure, and so the caller will be holding a modified structure
> > when the callee returns (just like it would if a pointer was passed).
>
> Right. My point is only that it's not clear from looking at the call
> site whether a struct passed by reference will be modified by the
> callee (some people pass by reference just for "efficiency"). And if
> the called function modifies the data without the caller's knowledge,
> it leads to obscure bugs. Whereas if you pass a pointer, it's
> immediately clear that the called function can modify the pointed-to
> object.
>

A structure is almost never passed by value, no matter whether it is C
or C++. So both languages require you either use descriptive naming or
look up declaration/implementation:

C:
struct str {
char buf[1024];
int count;
};
struct str s;
do_something_with_s(&s);
do_something_else_with_s(&s);

Which one modufies s?

--
Dmitry
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