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C++ FAQs, Second Edition by Mike Girou, Greg Lomow, Marshall Cline

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Chapter 33. High-Performance Software

FAQ 33.01 Is bad performance a result of bad design or bad coding?

All too often, bad performance is due to bad design.

When bad performance is due to bad coding practices, the correction is relatively inexpensive. However, when OO has been used improperly, the design is usually broken and performance problems are not easily repaired.

Improper inheritance is a common cause. When inheritance is used improperly, the design often becomes brittle and performance-related changes are prohibitively expensive. For example, some designs use inheritance as the means to put objects into a container. To put objects in a List, for example, they inherit from a particular base class, often called ListElement, ListItem ...

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