Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Modern language choice (and Ruby love)

Martin Fowler waxes on about language choice these days--with some Ruby love thrown in for good measure. In particular, how SmallTalk has finally arrived:
In the intervening years I've come to the view that Tom was right after all. After several years in curly brace land, Ruby reminded me of what I was missing. There's a clarity to reading Ruby code that just makes it an easier medium to work with, despite the inferior tooling. I'm way more sympathetic to the Smalltalk holdouts than I felt then, even though I haven't felt inclined to open an image in anger for a long time
..and how we are going to see lots of languages slug it out (or maybe coexist):
So are we returning to the language cacophony of the late 80's and early 90's? I think we will see multiple languages blathering away, but there will be an important difference. In the late 80's it was hard to get languages to inter-operate closely. These days there's a lot of attention to making environments that allow different language to co-exist closely. Scripting languages have traditionally had an intimate relationship with C. There's much effort to inter-operation on the JVM and CLR platforms. Too much has been invested in libraries for a language to ignore them.

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