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on April 9, 2001
This book changed my look on templates. I thought I'd use them only for containers... This bool explains advanced template techniques that allow You to customize you software by using templates ( and therefore in a very runtime efficient way ). I would give it a 'must read' even if you do not use templates because it also helps you understand how a C++ compiler sees the world. Be aware however that not all compilers can compile and run the samples ( and the Loki ) library ( M$VC 6.0 can't ).
The quality may not be up to where we excpect it from AW, but don't let that keep you away from this book. If something does not work or fails, call on comp.lang.c++.moderated, mostly the author himself will answer questions.
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on July 7, 2001
I am an advanced user of C++. Though what the book contains is useful, it was frowned upon by my team mates as something too complex. If I were to write code using the techniques in this book, someone else reading the code would have a tough time understanding it. Don't get me wrong, my team mates are some of the best programmers you would get to meet.
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on October 7, 2002
For normal practice, this book is useless. Even if somebody used some of the techniques in the book, the maintainability of the code would be zero.
How many programmers with a top 0.5% IQ do you know, anyway?
This book is way too esoteric for normal C++ programmers.
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on April 20, 2002
The stuff in this book IS an intellectual challenge, as such it's great, BUT! Life's full of intellectual challenges that offer a better practical payoff. This stuff is typical highbrow snobbery, academic extremism by (and for) tenured people who do no actual work and must squeeze out of themselves a piece of writing for the C++ Report on a monthly basis. That, btw, is precisely why I haven't read this useless publication in years.
Like I said: it is intellecually stimulating, if you got nothing else to do, by all means, indulge. Otherwise (if you are like 99.9(9)% of normal people) you'll spend your time much better working on something else - algorithms, hardware, another language, another OS, distributed systems, business issues, pricing, marketing, job-hopping, beer drinking, fulsome flattery towards your chief, checkin out babes, trainspotting... for goodness' sakes, what-...-ever, just simply get some extra sleep! - before you waste your time on this book.
Just my $.02 obviously.
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on January 12, 2003
I repeat, this book is dangerous! If my clients ever understand the consequences of what this book presents, I'm in trouble! The fact that you can change the whole behaviour of a program by simply changing one line of code (policy classes) or generate complete class hierarchies generically, and numerous other things, they'll expect that I can do everything in no time at all. There go my billable hours!!! No really, I actually give this book 6 stars because it has finally shown me ways of doing things I've always wanted to do but lacked the intelligence to figure out myself (namely generic Object Factories, Functors, among other things). I'm still looking forward to Andrei's description of a generic Observer class as that has been stumping me for quite a while now. I've had to read this book a few times just to absorb what's going on. As for practical, I've applied the concepts to be able to write code in a few lines instead of thousands.
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