| Heterogeneous, Nested STL
Containers in C++ |
The incentive to write a nested, heterogeneous container in C++
surfaced during the SUCHTHAT project . Therein we are working
on the implementation of a SuchThat compiler. The first prototype's
back-end , as well as many of the other components, were
implemented in Scheme . One of Scheme's main advantages is the
powerful list data structure, which can hold arbitrary data types1.
This allows the user to build nested lists, e.g. to represent a parse
tree or symbol table.
Our current focus is on merging Tecton  with SuchThat. Due to
severe performance problems with our first prototype we have
switched to C++ as implementation language. The STL provides basic
containers that suit most simple needs and exhibit very good
runtime behavior. The containers' major drawback for our purposes is
the inability to hold objects of different types and that they do not
We will show that exploitation of C++'s newest technologies, like
templates and run-time type information (RTTI), leads to a powerful
data structure based on the STL. We think that the different paradigms
of generic, object oriented and functional programming, which
often are seen as adversaries, can instead complement each other.
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The source code presented in the paper is available for download: