Type casts in C++, explained

Mar 21, 2019

As explained by my colleague, former professional C++ developer (now writes schwifty Java). Below is a quick explanation of four basic C++ type casts. Just for the matter of shorter post, consider each cast taking a template type T and a parameter value v like this: const_cast<T>(v).

  • const_cast - removes the const from the type of v (think of casting const char* will produce char*)
  • static_cast - C-style, unchecked explicit type casting (just like in old 90s: (int) 3.14)
  • reinterpret_cast - hard low-level treating a block of memory as type T, no matter what resides in that memory
  • dynamic_cast - does the runtime checks of param type and template type