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Why real Unix developers should avoid C, by Eric S. Raymond

Why real Unix developers should avoid C, by Eric S. Raymond

Posted Sep 6, 2010 22:57 UTC (Mon) by Blaisorblade (guest, #25465)
Parent article: The Managed Runtime Initiative

To all those complaining against Java supposed slowness, have a look at a couple of sections of "The Art of Unix Programming" by Eric S. Raymond, and at the amount of Unix applications not written in C:

Why not C? - (
Language Evaluations (

Moreover, think to the amount of security bugs due to C string and memory management. It is true that even C++ gets it more correct, and that IMHO NULL-termined strings were a bad idea even for C (say, because of strlen being O(n)); but many problems are due to C itself (dangling pointers, anyone?).

Writing a project in C, in most cases, is premature optimization, the root of all evil.

The only problem is that Java's tuning has given horrible startup performance, and that it's not tuned to perform well on small apps.

But nowadays even Eclipse and NetBeans can run in amounts of memory comparable to web browsers, and more reliably - I know of no web browser without massive memory leaks, even though I admittedly open many tabs - but that's no reason for leaking 5 times the memory you need. Might work on a OS which crashes before the few days you need to get that much leaked, not on Linux (and for what I hear, not even on most recent Windows systems).

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