Thursday, June 5, 2008

Typesy Turvy

Lambda The Ultimate feed just notified me that types are considered harmful. Ah yes, I heard this before, so what's the news? The news is that it's not Stevey vs. Cedric or anything like that, this is Benjamin C. Pierce in his own write. Benjamin C. Pierce, from "Types and Programming Languages" and "Advanced Types and Programming Languages", King of ML, Lord of the Functional Programming Commonwealth, Defender of Type Systems Faith!

Nice presentation, BTW. I think it's one of these situations when a big shot computer scientist is confronted with a real life problem. So you say the language is perfect for writing a compiler - good for you. How about a database application with a web front-end?


(click to see full-size)

Mr. Language Designer, where are you in this picture? Yes you, who designed the mousetrap which "the bug" has safely escaped from. Now it is here, so are you at least by the developer side, handing him something heavy to throw at "the bug", or are you on the bed with the rest of the crowd going "ah ah ah, what do they teach computer science graduates these days..."?

One thing that impressed me during otherwise boring (let me just read you aloud the tutorial) JRuby on Rails preso I recently attended - here is a system that tries to serve the needs of the developer. Not server vendor, not language designer, not JSR politician, not some brandthirsty marketing person or buzz-oriented architect, THE DEVELOPER. I am not used to that. So all I have to say - programmers of the world, unite! Stand for your rights! We deserve better tools, because we are the ones getting the job done.

Thank you for reading.

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