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Tip of the Day
Language: C++
Expertise: All
Mar 5, 1999

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Pseudo Destructors

Fundamental types have a pseudo destructor. A pseudo destructor is a syntactic construct whose sole purpose is to satisfy the need of generic algorithms and containers. It is a no-op code and has no real effect on its object.
 
typedef int N; 
int main()
{
  N i = 0;
  i.N::~N(); //1: pseudo destructor invocation
  i = 1; //i  was not affected by the invocation of the pseudo destructor 
  return 0;
}    
In the example, N is used as a synonym for int. In the statement numbered 1, the pseudo destructor of the non-class type N is explicitly invoked. Similar to the constructors of fundamental types, pseudo destructors enable writing code without having to know if a destructor actually exists for a given type.
Danny Kalev
 
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