You need to specify the numbers so that if you later remove a field or
rearrange the fields in the file, the numbers stay the same.  Protobufs put
a lot of effort into maintaining wire format compatibility as code changes.

Daniel

On Jul 9, 2010 8:25 AM, "Meel" <meel.velli...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I am new to Protocol Buffers. I have been reading about it, and it
> seems like the solution that I have long been looking for. Thanks guys
> for making this an open source project! It all seems to make a lot of
> sense, but one thing puzzles me: the explicit specification of field
> numbers. Is it really required to specify the field numbers, or can
> they be optional? In every example I looked at, they just go
> sequentially 1,2,3,etc., so can they just be implicit?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Meel
>
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