This is an unofficial snapshot of the ISO/IEC JTC1 SC22 WG21 Core Issues List revision 114a. See for the official list.


1781. Converting from nullptr_t to bool in overload resolution

Section:  [over.match.conv]     Status: CD5     Submitter: Hubert Tong     Date: 2013-09-26

[Accepted as a DR at the November, 2018 (San Diego) meeting.]

According to [over.match.conv] paragraph 1, when a class type S is used as an initializer for an object of type T,

The conversion functions of S and its base classes are considered. Those non-explicit conversion functions that are not hidden within S and yield type T or a type that can be converted to type T via a standard conversion sequence ( [over.ics.scs]) are candidate functions.

Because conversion from std::nullptr_t to bool is only permitted in direct-initialization (7.3.14 [conv.fctptr]), it is not clear whether there is a standard conversion sequence from std::nullptr_t to bool, considering that an implicit conversion sequence is intended to model copy-initialization. Should [over.match.conv] be understood to refer only to conversions permitted in copy-initialization, or should the form of the initialization be considered? For example,

  struct SomeType {
    operator std::nullptr_t();
  bool b{ SomeType() };    // Well-formed?

Note also [over.ics.rank] paragraph 4, which may bear on the intent (or, alternatively, might describe a situation that cannot arise):

A conversion that does not convert a pointer, a pointer to member, or std::nullptr_t to bool is better than one that does.

See also issues 2133 and 2243.)

Proposed resolution (June, 2018):

  1. Change 7.3.15 [conv.bool] paragraph 1 as follows:

  2. A prvalue of arithmetic, unscoped enumeration, pointer, or pointer-to-member type can be converted to a prvalue of type bool. A zero value, null pointer value, or null member pointer value is converted to false; any other value is converted to true. For direct-initialization (9.4 [dcl.init]), a prvalue of type std::nullptr_t can be converted to a prvalue of type bool; the resulting value is false.
  3. Add the following bullet before 9.4 [dcl.init] bullet 17.8:

  4. The semantics of initializers are as follows. The destination type is the type of the object or reference being initialized and the source type is the type of the initializer expression. If the initializer is not a single (possibly parenthesized) expression, the source type is not defined.

  5. Change [over.ics.rank] bullet 4.1 as follows:

  6. Standard conversion sequences are ordered by their ranks: an Exact Match is a better conversion than a Promotion, which is a better conversion than a Conversion. Two conversion sequences with the same rank are indistinguishable unless one of the following rules applies:

This resolution also resolves issue 2133.