I’ve been thinking for some time now that I should test drive the new C++11 features a bit more seriously, but I’ve not really had the spare time to do it or I just haven’t managed to decide on exactly how I wanted to do it. Now that I’ve installed Visual Studio 11 Beta, which already ships with a lot of all the new C++11 features, I decided to just jump in head-first.
So, this is the deal:

  • I’ll walk my way (slowly) through the new features that interest me the most, using the VS11 implementation of C++11.
  • I’ll divide my journey into small-ish pieces that are easy enough to also blog about.
  • I’ll take lots of detours into neighboring areas as I create supporting infrastructure to accomplish what I want and need.
  • I’ll create “something real” without using any off-the-shelf libraries or tools, because I want to be self-sufficient using C++11, good old general C++ and a large portion of what I consider best practices.

Provided that VS11 Beta supports these items, this is what I want to look closer at:

  • Rvalue references and move constructors
  • Type inference: auto, decltype
  • Range-based for-loop
  • Lambda functions
  • Explicit overrides
  • Null pointer constant
  • Strongly typed enumerations
  • Explicitly defaulted and deleted special member functions
  • Static assertions
  • Timing: std::chrono::time_point, std::chrono::duration and clocks
  • Multithreading: std::thread, std::mutex, std::recursive_mutex, std::condition_variable, std::condition_variable_any, std::lock_guard, std::unique_lock, std::async, std::packaged_task, std::future, std::promise
  • Hash sets: std::unordered_set, std::unordered_multiset, std::unordered_map, std::unordered_multimap
  • Smart pointers: std::unique_ptr​, ​std::shared_ptr, std::weak_ptr​
  • Extensible random number facility: 3 generators and a number of distributions

Where applicable, I will also look at the features from a performance perspective, what magic the compiler manages to pull off and what differences we’ll get at an assembly level by choosing to do this instead of that.