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4. ObjectiveC

Since GNUstep is primarily written in ObjectiveC the C language coding standards largely apply with modifications as specified in the previous section.

Most code is expect to be written in traditional ObjectiveC, but classes implementing newer APIs designed by Apple will sometimes need to be written using ObjectiveC-2.0, though compatibility with old compilers should be maintained wherever possible, and preprocessor macros must be used to at least conditionally build new code without breaking old code.

One ObjectiveC-2.0 feature (the dot (’.’) operator) is forbidden though. One problem is that, while apparently simple, the actual operation of this feature in unusual cases is actually undefined and varies between compiler versions. The more serious problem is that the feature is simply very bad style because it looks like a simple structure field access and yet the code is really doing something very different and much more expensive, so use of the feature tends to lead to performance problems, bugs, and less explicit/readable code.

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