Well, as the discussion above demonstrates, there are plenty of people who suspect the quality of gcc (yes, that means quality of compiled code - read bugs introduced by the compiler) will go down after gcc starts being written in c++. If so, they have the option, in the full spirit of openness, to keep the c based gcc alive as long as their lack of trust in the c++ based gcc remains. Once that trust is acquired, say after plenty of people use c++ based gcc in building critical systems for 10 or 20 years. So, by 2030, this can all be forgotten and studied as an amusing transition. However, if a rocket blows up or a reactor melts down or pacemakers fail (due to a bug introduced by c++ based gcc), software designers don't have to feel the sky has fallen. (the way petroleum engineers feel now about the gulf oil leak). but switch to the good old, trusted and proven, c based gcc for their next project.