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To Iterate Is Human, to Range Is Divine

The tedium, security hazards, and adverse performance effects of using a pair of iterators to designate the beginning and end of a sequence can all be avoided by switching to ranges—objects that bundle pairs of iterators.




Building the Right Environment to Support AI, Machine Learning and Deep Learning

ost Standard Library algorithms operate on sequences whose boundaries are designated by a pair of iterators: one iterator marks the beginning of the sequence and another marks its end. Combining such a pair of iterators into a single object has several advantages in terms of code simplification, safety, and performance. The following sections will explain how to use the new C++09 range library and show some of its advantages.

The following Standard Library algorithms, which I have selected randomly from the <algorithm> header, exhibit a recurring pattern of verbosity and tedium:

template <class ForwardIterator, class T> void replace(ForwardIterator first, ForwardIterator last, const T& old_value, const T& new_value); template <class InputIterator, class T> InputIterator find(InputIterator first, InputIterator last, const T& value); template<class InputIterator, class OutputIterator> OutputIterator copy(InputIterator first, InputIterator last, OutputIterator result);

These algorithms, as well as std::sort, std::remove, and so forth, represent the beginning and the end of the sequence on which they operate by a pair of iterators.

Why not combine these two iterators into a single object? That's exactly what a std::range does—it combines two iterators into a single compact and efficient object.

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