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NOTE: use Perl; is on undef hiatus. You can read content, but you can't post it. More info will be forthcoming forthcomingly.

All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Do you think there are language features which encourage more respect for OOAD in Java versus Perl? Do you think the way that people approach and learn both languages lead to different types of programming?

    (I ask because I suspect that there's one strong trend involved, but I'd like to hear your thoughts here, if the questions are at all interesting to you.)

    • "(I ask because I suspect that there's one strong trend involved, but I'd like to hear your thoughts here, if the questions are at all interesting to you.)"

      I'm curious. What trend do you suspect?

      -scott
      • What trend do you suspect?

        Java ended up as the de facto teaching language because Pascal was the teaching language of the previous generation, C++ was too baroque, Smalltalk was too much unlike Pascal, and when "How to Use Excel" is a CS class, there's no way you can think about teaching undergraduates Scheme.

        Though there were still a few books written about Smalltalk or Lisp in this era, non-theoretical CS programs moved to Java in the late '90s, hence Design Patterns mixed C++ and Java examples (and thus many of the more severe problems of that book). A lot of the great Smalltalk programmers I know moved to Java because it had momentum. You can go to OOPSLA (or more likely the POPL track) and hear about Haskell, ML, Ocaml, Smalltalk once in a while, and lately Ruby, but even a lot of academic research uses Java and the JVM. (.Net and the CLR have grown as you might expect in the past few years.)

        I can't entirely account for the fact that the dominant development environment of the dominant desktop platform was Visual C++, but I do think the academic adoption of Java has led to a focus among newly-minted Java programmers that There Is One Right Way To Do Things. It helps that the language design encourages One Right Way, though I remain unconvinced that that principle is useful.

        Maybe calling this all one trend is conflation, but it seems a mixture of 1) deliberate design choices to fuunnel all code down certain paths 2) academic adoption and dogmatic teaching styles and 3) plenty of supporting literature.

        • Whoa.

          I think this deserves a post on your O’Reilly weblog. Seriously, that’s an excellent bit of insight that deserves to get some wider attention than a comment somewhere on use Perl.