[Web-SIG] Re: Just lost another one to Rails
gvwilson at cs.utoronto.ca
Fri Apr 15 14:16:34 CEST 2005
It's been a week now since my "Just lost another one to Rails" post,
in which I said that a buddy of mine down in the States was switching
to Ruby, after using Python for two years, because he and his
colleagues needed a lightweight, ready-out-of-the-box web app
framework. Responses so far seem to fall into several camps:
- "I agree completely, that's why I'm adding yet another framework to
the mix!" (I'm waiting for someone to stand up at PyCon and say,
"Web App People's Front? We're the People's Front of Web Apps!")
- Sneering: "Bah---Rails is impure! Unclean! We must keep our Python
pure and elegant!" (Yeah... look how well that worked for Scheme.
In my experience, most programmers value usefulness over elegance.)
- Whistling in the dark. For example, Ian Bicking said, "...diversity
isn't so bad if we can just make a compelling infrastructure
experience." I respectfully disagree: right now, the diversity in
this area is preventing any of the frameworks from becoming mature
enough to be credible among the "I need to get it done now"
developers I talk to. (Quick, how many copies of "Programming
WebWare/Twisted/CherryPy/whatever" or "The WW/T/CP/whatever
Cookbook" are on pre-order? Probably 3500 less than the equivalent
It also gives the impression of confusion and bickering, which is
lethal when you're trying to persuade someone in the commercial
world to adopt something that doesn't come with a 1-800 customer
- Frank acknowledgment of RonR's strengths (e.g. Peter Hunt's very
welcome post --- Peter, I would have thanked you directly, but I
didn't have an email address).
RonR is proof that new web app frameworks can displace existing tools
like PHP. It's also proof that the existence of a lightweight ready-
idiosyncratic-XML-templates-or-configuration-files framework is
important enough that large numbers of programmers will choose (or
switch) their language on that basis alone.
So, any bets we'll still be moaning about this after PyCon'06?
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