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Javva The Hutt November 2009

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Back to newsletter 108 contents | All Javva's articles

Kitchen Sink Dweebs

Am I the only person who doesn't want any more stuff chucked in to Java? People keep saying they want this feature added, or that syntax or something else that some other language has. Why? I mean, gawd, can't these people program? Is there really some huge productivity gain from adding in the ability to create collections statically in the code using a square bracket? Will I suddenly become a hugely more productive programmer. Oh, wait, some other language has it, so we have to have it too. Or we might lose some newbie to the other language. Cos really, newbies base their choice on these "features", don't they!

Can you recall choosing any programming language because of a few of these features? I can sure remember the languages I've used. Mostly I learned languages because they were required for a course or project I was doing. Then there were some I learned because they sounded like they were pretty useful, people were doing useful things with them. Like Perl - it was so much more useful than unix scripting, you had consistency across machines and no arcane drivel that you had to work out every time you wrote another script. Then Tcl/Tk - anyone remember that? Gave me a gui for Perl, that was the only reason I learned that. Then along came Java which had the whole shebang in one go, no clumsy amalgam of languages, and you got applets (woohoo, they were fun way back in the late 90s, remember the excitement of developing them?). I recall learning PHP for a site that I needed to help create, which only supported PHP scripting for certain bits of functionality.

Every time, the syntax, the minor features, they were something to be learnt after I had chosen the language, never a reason for choosing the language. The languages I kept at were the ones that provided solutions to the problems I had - but, much more importantly, they were the ones for which I'm paid to work in. The syntax mattered only a little. If I suddenly found Java work drying up now (which doesn't look like it'll happen any time soon), I'd look at the language and skills that had the most jobs in the marketplace, brush up on those, and kick off there. When choosing a language the syntax just doesn't matter all that much, the features aren't the deciding factor, it's the ability to pay the bills that matters.

So can I suggest all of you hardcore dweebs who want yet more junk stuffed into java go off and start a language called "KitchenSink" and put all the crap you want in it.

BCNU - Javva The Hutt. (LinkedIn profile http://www.linkedin.com/in/javathehutt feel free to connect me, my email as javva@ this java performance domain).


Back to newsletter 108 contents


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