An Open Letter to EA – Open Source EASTL!

I was recently made aware of something really great. A version of the C++ Standard Template Library that has been modified and redesigned to deal with the issues of game development. It was created by EA and is called the EASTL (Electronic Arts Standard Template Library)

Dear Electronic Arts,

Please make the EASTL open source with a BSD style license. You’d be doing the game industry and the software industry at large a HUGE public service. You’d be our heros!

I know that on the one hand you’ve put lots of work into it. You might even see it as a competitive advantage so you might be asking why open source it?

On the other hand it is based on the STL which was created by the C++ community. It builds on lots of ideas that are available in the spirit of cooperation in things like the BOOST libraries. Every company is clearly managing to ship games without it but life for all of us would be so much better if we had a standard like this.

As well, open sourcing EASTL with a completely free BSD style license would allow the various companies and groups to contribute to it and to make it a part of their distributions. Just think if the gcc group, the VC++ group, maybe even Metroworks and others all directly supported your solutions. Making the EASTL open would even go a very long way to help make all the ideas and solutions you’ve created become standards. How cool would that be!

There’s lots of precedent of effectively BSDed open source projects. Maybe of which I’m sure EA uses. Apache, XFree, Python, Lua, Boost and many other large popular projects are BSDed.

Please please please make EASTL open sourced BSD style. This is a great opportunity for EA to be more than just an commerical leader but also a community and industry leader.

PS: If you are reading this page please DIGG this article or post about it on your blog. Let’s encourage EA and hopefully they’ll do it.

  • There is even historical precedent

  • IFF

    Yes, and IFF is still in use in many places. Lightwave files are IFF or were last time I checked. I think PNG is IFF or at least based on it as well.

  • Omar

    Info: If you google EASTL, someone on a forum mentions that it’s been worked on by a single employee during his spare time.

    Obviously it’s great work and inspiring (I caught a few ideas I could use in my own projects).

  • sammyjojo

    Well that was an interesting read. That could be useful on some of the projects that we’re working on at our company. Is this library free to use? Where can I find out more information about using it?

  • Omar

    sammyjojo: the library is not released. That was the point of gregg’s posting.

  • LeaveMeBe
    Awesome package

    EASTL is the work of one of our great central tech developers, Paul Pedriana, and as someone who makes use of that package on a regular basis, I can speak for its versatility and efficiency. This package is a godsend for teams that are not averse to using multiplatform-applicable container classes.

    That’s all I’ll say. 🙂


    Amen brother

    While I don’t have the weekends to do the same, the author is right… it would be a great boone to the industry. JUST DO IT!

    I’ll even send a box of meat.. Christmas meat!

  • Phil

    any news on this subject? 🙂

  • Paul