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back to article Eight EXCELLENT languages for the fondleslab-friendly Intranet of Thingies

What are you up, Verity? Ensconced in one of your comfortable, miles-from-any-critical-path projects? Actually, I have been sussing out an upgrade path for our longstanding customer x. Do you remember? Certainly I do. It is quite easy to remember 'x'. Even in this age of companies with stupid names, it is unusual. As I recall, …

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In short

So basically, it boils down to:

- out with the P languages: Perl, Python and PHP

- yay! to Javascript.

'nuff said (though I'm still sticking with Perl - and Ruby was never really a contender, anyway)

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Facepalm

What's wrong with Pascal, I mean, FORTRAN?

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Happy

"What's wrong with Pascal, I mean, FORTRAN?". Pascal was Algol and Fortran more like Cobol, in my oppinion, having used them all.

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Pascal was Algol and Fortran more like Cobol, in my oppinion, having used them all.

Hardly surprising, since Pascal was created to be an educational language in the Algol family, and Fortran1 and COBOL2 were both created long before Algol, so it would be surprising for them to have adopted its style.

But by the same token, it would be more precise to say that FORTRAN, having come first, influenced COBOL, or more plausibly that they both reflected the capabilities and ideas of the time.

And modern-day Fortran and COBOL have adopted many ideas from Algol. Well-written free-format OO COBOL is not much like traditional COBOL at all.

1Then "FORTRAN", of course; the name change came in 1990.

2Not yet "Cobol".

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I wish Flash would come back...

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Yes, I saw the movie by Dino de Laurentiis. UGH.

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Devil

I wish Flash would come back

Actionscript? The language from hell.

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Facepalm

Please God no

No, just no.

No to JavaScript and no to all those precarious languages perched on top of JavaScript.

How about we develop the <script type="text/c++"> tag? It'll fix everything.

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Re: Please God no

I'm voting for <script type="text/haskell">. That way every web developer will end up spending their entire day worrying over what a monad is, and the rest of us can get back to the real world in peace and quiet without interfaces that change every bloody time you fire up the app.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Please God no

Isn't a monad something that Leibniz dreamed up to explain the System of the World?

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Re: Please God no

I thought it was the singular form of gonad

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Re: Please God no

I seem to recall Leibnitz wrote about window-less monads. In those days I never got up early enough to make it to a lecture, otherwise I might also be able to tell you what they are.

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Go

Re: Please God no

Think I'll go for <script type="text/lisp">

All the other <script type="text/[insert inferior language here]"> variants can just be lisp macros ;)

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Re: Please God no

As defined by Greenspun's 10th rule

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenspun's_tenth_rule

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Re: Please God no

I seem to recall Leibnitz wrote about window-less monads. In those days I never got up early enough to make it to a lecture, otherwise I might also be able to tell you what they are.

They are simplicity itself. Windowless monads have no commerce with one another. They have no commerce - one monad cannot affect another one. (Technically, for Leibnitz, a monad cannot be the efficient cause of an effect on another monad.)

Basically, Leibnitz proposed that the world works like this:

- Every kind of matter is a type of monad; things are made up of collections of these types of monads.

- Every monad has a series of states it's been in, and is in presently, and will be in in the future.

- When things happen, it's just monads each moving into new states.

- When it appears that one thing causes another to happen, that's an illusion. Monads move individually into their new states.

- We think that there are efficient causes because those different monads are in "pre-established harmony" with one another. In other words, God set up the universe like one of those Disneyworld Animatronic displays, where a bunch of things move in a synchronized fashion.

- We experience the world as harmonious in this fashion because God has given us "the best of all possible worlds", which means in part one that actually behaves in a way similar to how we think it behaves

This whole tortured and solipsistic arrangement is supposed to solve the mind-body problem. Many people think it's easier to just not be a dualist and not have a mind-body problem in the first place. A great many more people, of course, don't give a damn and just get on with their day.

HTH. HAND.

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Mushroom

Ye Gods, Jesus Frack Holy!!

Fab technology #1: the dominant browser-side language will be JavaScript.

This is like saying your next fab resort will be a Stalin's gulag.

You may not necessarily want to be there, but you ARE in a military truck with GPU goons on all sides, so choices are restricted.

Still doesn't mean the destination is "fab".

Also, do people differentiate between a JVM and Java?

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Mushroom

By the Spirit of Baltar

Also, no mention of Golang and D?

What is this, 2005 all over again.

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Paris Hilton

I actually know about Go…

First time I heard of this D thing though.

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A game of thrones

Both are vying for the next crown:

D versus Go comparison [closed]

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Re: A game of thrones

Mozilla have also thrown their hat into the ring with Rust: http://www.rust-lang.org/

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"tide is lapping around our Cnutish feet"

Have a care Verity -- where I come from, calling someone a Cnut may lead to fisticuffs

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Re: "tide is lapping around our Cnutish feet"

I think Verity is actually channeling Matthew Arnold:

"for the world, which seems

To lie before us like a land of dreams,

So various, so beautiful, so new,

Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,

Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;

And we are here as on a darkling plain

Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,

Where ignorant armies clash by night"

After long years of programming, it's my view that this is how it has been, semper, ubique, et ad omnibus. Every new technology promises so much, until it collides with reality.

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Re: "tide is lapping around our Cnutish feet"

Peotry? Are you sure?

I rather thought Verity was alluding to King Canute, he of sitting-on-a-throne-ordering-the-rising-tide-to-retreat- and-getting-wet fame. Or, equally, to King Knut, who ordered the sea to retreat to show his fawning courtiers that the temporal powers of kings didn’t amount to much compared to the forces of nature.

Though probably not to King Astroknut, who is believed to have led the Viking expedition to Mars in 976. Viking helmets as a rule did not have decorative horns on them. And certainly not Viking space helmets. But I digress.

Canute and Knut, yes, but ‘Cnut’ seems to be a spelling used only by those intent on provoking unfortunate misunderstandings.

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" ... Z80 machine coding by hand, ..."

Oh yes!! I used to do that. Ahhhh, happy days.

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Re: " ... Z80 machine coding by hand, ..."

I still do. sometimes, you just need the bug-compatibility...

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Javascript is dead, long live Python

http://www.brython.info/index.html?lang=en

Joke appart, I find the rumours of Python's death a bit exagerated, especially as people are moving away from Java and there are things that you jus can't do in a compiled language (and for which JS is grossly inadequate; I'm thinking "anything serious" for example ;-) )

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Trollface

Re: Javascript is dead, long live Python

Is that why JavaScript was used to code the Python interpreter?

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Re: Javascript is dead, long live Python

Python is hugely popular with the big-data and number-crunching crowds, though R and Julia are making inroads.

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PHP will be the COBOL of the web

... Without any systems documentation for maintainers.

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Me?

The Last One

The great thing about The Last One was the cutout on the back cover of the manual to allow it to stand up on the desk. Now if I could find a 5.25 floppy drive...

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The answer is "JavaScript"...

now whats the question?

Just like how 10 years ago the "answer" was Java

And 10 years before that the "answer" was C++

And 10 years before that the "answer" was COBOL

Just another case of history repeating.

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Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

> And 10 years before that the "answer" was C++

To be fair the answer is _still_ C++

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Thumb Down

Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

> To be fair the answer is _still_ C++

Derp.

To the person with a C++ compiler, everything looks like C++ problem.

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Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

ERP DERP READ FAIL

From the post I was answering to: "Just like how 10 years ago the "answer" was Java And 10 years before that the "answer" was C++"

From the article: "Let's get on with it. Fab Technology #5 is C++, again, just because it always is"

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Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

Yes, the answer is C++, but I forgot the question :)

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Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

To be fair, C++ with smart pointers is a very much more usable language than C++ of old. One might even go as far to question whether all these garbage collected languages are barking up the wrong tree...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

(defun isrelevantp (q) nil)

(setq theanswer (if (isrelevantp 'thequestion) 'LISP 'LISP))

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Re: The answer is "JavaScript"...

@AC: "(setq theanswer (if (isrelevantp 'thequestion) 'LISP 'LISP))"

And you absolutely had to introduce a side effect here, you heretic, you?

(defun theanswer (q) (if (isrelevantp q) 'LISP 42))

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SVV

Anybody publicly propsing Javascipt as a solution to anything.....

should be sentenced to 10 years working on a Javascript heavy system.

I lasted 3 months myself, before quitting due to the insanely bad code that I had to work with and the fact that the only guy there who could comprehend the thing because he'd spent years writing it was always so busy sorting out the endless problems that occurred on a daily basis and needed to be solved instantly, that he never had any time to answer the many many questions I had regarding what all this garbage did. Of course he believed that all code is "self documenting" and anyone who couldn't scan through the 30000 lines of undocumented javascript functions in an average source file and instantly understand the whole thing was so intellectually inferior to himself the great genius and guru of the company that they deserved to be treated with nothing less than contempt....

If someone could show me just one clear fully realised javascript based system that is easy to comprehend, maintain and extend, and has clear benefits over other alternatives then I might just be persuaded to change my opinions, but for now the PJSTD (Post Javascript Traumatic Disorder) has still not healed completely.

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Devil

Re: Anybody publicly propsing Javascipt as a solution to anything.....

Right. Didn't Stroustrup publicly admit that C++ was just a way to make sure programmers always had jobs to go to?

Its the same with JavaScript.

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"...2.67 times na" Ahem! that would be 1.618^na

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We have allowed ourselves to be overtaken by the receding hairline of male pattern mediocrity.

Sounds like you're describing the unfathomable popularity of Radiohead ...

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Scala

Come on Verity, Scala isn't a functional Java, it's just a (minimum LinkedIn/Twitter-scale) functional language on one of the most highly engineered and supported things in the world, the JVM.

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Re: Scala

Except isn't it the JVMs that are the problems, not the Java language itself?

Scala I like because it does CSP. I might even have to have a look at it.

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Re: Scala

Except isn't it the JVMs that are the problems, not the Java language itself?

Not really. It's the JREs, and specifically the vast brokenness of the GUI parts of the class libraries, rather than the source languages or the JVM, which is the source of nearly all of the security problems with Java. Oracle undermined the security model to provide more GUI razzle-dazzle and broke the type system. Gowdiak's discussions are fairly straightforward if you're curious.

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No SOAP?

How will I get decent performance out of my IBM 650 code?

Laugh while you can, Monkey Boy. Worst-case latency to RAM these days is a lot worse (in CPU cycles) than back in the "My main memory is spinning rust" days of yore.

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Pint

What a good question

What should we teach our kids. Thinking about it I always seem to return to this "no-silver-bullet" mood.

http://faculty.salisbury.edu/~xswang/Research/Papers/SERelated/no-silver-bullet.pdf

One language is probably not enough. I would prefer one with a compiler, as all this multicore stuff probably need it. Having worked with several from machine code to Cobol, I have no favorite language. You can produce shit with a "good" language and good stuff with a "bad" language. It all comes down to how good you are at using the language, and especially on how big and useful the library you (and your friends) have been able to collect, with useful bits and pieces. Companies seldom realize how empty the pockets of a new programmer is when entering a new organisation.

@svv Taking care of some other persons "baby" is never easy, it can be difficult even to understand programs you wrote yourself years ago. I have seen people leave for the same reason. I have also met extremely efficient "system hoppers". Guys who jump ship just when the software is supposed to be ready, and never is, and just before the customers start to complain.

Anyway, my daughter wants to learn programming, what should I recommend.

And then there was this documentation thing. I have seen some good, but never any that kept up with reality and the source code. The truth is, indeed, in the source, especially if the source you have corresponds to the one that was used for your customer.

I have always worked for software companies producing software for customers so I see programing only from that perspective.

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Unhappy

Nonono

When Satan saw how javascript was spreading across the world he packed his bags and left Hades. He was heard muttering "My work here is done."

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Anonymous Coward

refusing to install some utility '<sigh> because it needs Python'

Do what? I've got 17 python[0-9][0-9].dlls on my machine, all helpfully put there by whatever it was I was playing with. Even got a 33 one somewhere along the way, how good is that?

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Facepalm

I don't know...

whether to up-vote you, or down-vote you....so instead I'll give you a D'oh!.

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