Platform policy question: API compatability in minor releases

Denis Bueno dbueno at
Sat May 9 18:29:19 EDT 2009

On Sat, May 9, 2009 at 12:50, Duncan Coutts <duncan.coutts at> wrote:
> Allow compatible API additions
>        If the change is compatible then it does not break any existing
>        programs, so it should be allowed. Any program that works with a
>        platform particular release will continue to work with
>        subsequent minor versions. This is standard backwards
>        compatibility policy.

Isn't this false, though?  Some existing program could easily break.

Suppose a library exports functions f and g, but in the next minor
revision starts exporting h.  Some code that uses the library uses f
and g, and defines its own (unrelated) function called h in the module
that imports the library unqualified.  When the library gets updated,
the code now has an ambiguous reference to h.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.


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