C++20 designated initializers

The C++20 standard provides new ways to initialize aggregates. These are:

  • list initialization with designated initializers, that has the following forms:
    T object = { .designator = arg1 , .designator { arg2 } ... };
    T object { .designator = arg1 , .designator { arg2 } ... };
  • direct initialization, that has the following form:
    T object (arg1, arg2, ...);

In this article, we will see how list initialization with designated initializers work.

Concepts versus SFINAE-based constraints

In some situations, we need to makes sure function templates can only be invoked with some specific types. SFINAE (that stands for Substitution Failure Is Not An Error) is a set of rules that specify how compilers can discard specializations from the overload resolution without causing errors. A way to achieve this is with the help of std::enable_if.

C++20 Concepts in Visual Studio 2019 16.3 Preview 2

Back in mid-August, Microsoft released the 2nd preview of Visual Studio 2019 16.3. This is the first version of Visual Studio to support concepts from C++20 both in the compiler and the standard library (header <concepts>) without the changes made at the ISO C++ standards meeting in Cologne. These changes are available when you compile with the /std:c++latest switch.

Concepts allow performing compile-time validation of template arguments and function dispatch based on properties of types. Concepts are very useful in libraries where they can be used to impose compile-time checks on the template arguments of functions or types. For instance, a generic algorithm for sorting a container would require the container type to be sortable for the program to even compile.

In this article, I will show an example with a concept that verifies that a type T can be converted to a std::string via a to_string() function, that is either a member of the class or a free function.

Let there be constants!

In the beginning, there was const. And people saw that const was good. And then the people said: let there be constexpr, and consteval, and constinit. And thus, starts this article about constant functions and variables in C++20, which I will try to keep short and concise.

C++ code samples before and after Ranges

The Ranges library proposal has been accepted for C++20 at the San Diego meeting of the standard committee in November last year. The library provides components for handling ranges of values aimed at simplifying our code. Unfortunately, the Ranges library is not very well documented, which makes it harder to grasp for those that want to learn it. This post is intended as an introduction based on examples of code written with and without Ranges.

C++20 calendars and time zones

A couple years ago I wrote a post called A better date and time C++ library about Howard Hinnant’s date library (I actually planned for several posts, but only the first was materialized). A slightly modified version of the library has been voted in for C++ 20 at the ISO committee meeting in Jacksonville this month. You can find the actual proposal here D0355R7: Extending <chrono> to Calendars and Time Zones.