C++ as a "Live at Head" Language
Engineering is programming integrated over time. That is to say, as much as it can be difficult to get your code to build and run correctly, it is manifestly harder to keep it working in the face of changing assumptions and requirements. This is true no matter the scale, from a small program to a shared library. Only two solutions have been shown to be theoretically sound: never change or provide no compatibility guarantees. What if there were a third option? What if we took the question of maintenance out of the realm of theory and moved it to practice? This talk discusses the approach we've used at Google and how that intersects with other languages, package management, API and ABI compatibility, and a host of other software engineering practices. The particulars of C++ as a language and an ecosystem make it well positioned for a different approach: Live at Head.