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What is the strict aliasing rule?

What is the strict aliasing rule?

"Strict aliasing is an assumption, made by the C (or C++) compiler, that dereferencing pointers to objects of different types will never refer to the same memory location (i.e. alias each other.)

see this for more info:
http://cellperformance.beyond3d.com/articles/2006/06/understanding-strict-aliasing.html