Typing system vs. Java

Neil Hodgson nhodgson at bigpond.net.au
Tue Jul 31 01:06:00 CEST 2001


Peter Milliken:
> Sorry Tom, Just can't let the statement "The ideal
> language would support both strong and weak
> typing." go by :-). As soon as you allow "both" (and
> damned if I know how you would do that! :-)), then
> your typical C/C++ programmer (unfair there, I
> should say "programmer") will choose the loose
> typing everytime, because he "knows" what he
> means, even if the compiler can't work it out,
> doesn't he? :-) So all the benefits that you just
> acknowledged for strong typing are lost :-).

   The way I see a strong/weak language working well is with separate layers
that use one or the other technique. In my work I'd like to see the low
level data structure layer using strong typing both for correctness and
performance. The higher level policy and UI layers would be weakly typed for
development speed. Currently, this can be achieved by using C++ for the
lower layers and Python for the upper but this separates the code bases too
much. An ideal language would allow development of a feature to start as
weakly typed and then be migrated to strongly typed when and if required.

   Neil






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