Stan Lippman, a C++ guru at Microsoft has started blogging. His inaugural entry discusses one of the issues that their language design team faces in moving C++ to the CLR. Near the end, in a section entitled “The C++.NET Design Challenge,“ he says:
Literally, for every aspect of the C++ extensions to support .NET the question always reduces to “How do we integrate this (or that) aspect of the Common Language Runtime (CLR) into C++ so that it (a) feels natural to the C++ programmer, and (b) is easy to use in its own right under .NET. I like to call this the Janus face dilemma. (Janus is a two-faced Roman diety, the one turned facing towards what has just been, the other towards what is to be.)
As my entry title says, it’s good to know that we (the VB team) are not alone. Moving VB to the CLR was a major undertaking involving many, many, many dilemmas along these lines. Even though C++ and VB are two very different languages, I have a lot of empathy for what the C++ team is going through as they struggle with these questions. It’s not an easy path to trod.