Could Python supplant Java?

James A. Robertson jarober at
Fri Aug 23 00:36:15 CEST 2002

On Thu, 22 Aug 2002 17:16:49 -0400, "Dan Johnson"
<danieljohnson at> wrote:

>"goose" <spammenotguse at> wrote in message
>news:3D642411.7060902 at
>> > That's largely irrelevant. First, because there are many
>> > freely downloadable tools,
>> true, but that doesn't make it irrelevant ... you buy the
>> OS and then have to go find tools ??????
>You do. It's not a problem.
>> what kind of a system is that ? every system I've worked on
>> (other than windows) came with at least *ONE* compiler ...
>> and most let you rebuild the kernel as well ...
>Windows is not the first not to; the Macintosh did not
>until MacOS X.

Solaris ships with a worthless compiler you can't really use.  You
have to <pay> to get the Sun compiler, or go fetch the gcc.  Which
rock do people live under, anyway?  Sun unbundled the C compiler more
than a decade ago....

>> > third because
>> > most developers are commercial
>> no. You must back this up if you want me to believe it.
>> Of the <20 regular friends I have, only 1 has never
>> programmed. all of them, given access to SOME sort of a
>> development tool, will write something (already have
>> as a matter of fact)
>I think you may be a little unusual in this.
>> > and paying for development
>> > software is not a bad thing.
>> not in itself, no, but the system HAS to come with something.
>> even my commodore 64 let me program it out the box, msdos
>> came with qbasic ... the only computer system in existence
>> that I can think of that does not come with ANYTHING is the
>> current windows line-up. If systems are developer-hostile, then
>> windows surely leads the rest of the field, as the others at
>> the very least install SOMETHING to let you write programs
>> for your machine.
>I would suggest that there are other dimension to developer
>friendliness, and most of them are more important than
>what ships with the OS out of the box.
>> > MS got where it was by cowtowing to the developers.
>> no, they got to where they were by OEM licensing.
>> period.
>> they *never* cowtowed to developers for as long as I
>> remember.
>You are quite mistaken. Microsoft is very, very good
>to its developers. This is the single most important thing
>in putting them where they are. Had it not been for the
>large stable of Windows apps, those OEM deals would
>never have happened- and even Microsoft can't write
>that many apps.
>> If someone else developed something nice, they promptly
>> got it (where do you think scandisk for DOS came from ???
>> Microsoft ?, remember stacker ?)
>Microsoft sometimes competes with its developers, and
>they are a touch cookie when they do. But they sometimes
>just buy out their developers instead, and that's very
>nice, if you like dump trucks full of money.
>> > Windows may not be as C friendly as Linux, but it is
>> > developer friendly and, indeed, many developers develop
>> > products for it.
>> yes, many developers develop for it, but as you've pointed
>> out in a different thread, the reason developers write for
>> it is because it is so popular, never mind whether the developers
>> are writing apps or viruses ...
>It didn't start out populate. MS did a good job
>of recruiting developers for it. They still do.
>> > Also, NT 3.1 (or maybe 3.51) had the 'at' command
>> > which would schedule commands to run. So I'm not
>> > sure where you get your information, because you're wrong.
>> > If you must type 'cron', then you can either make a batch
>> > file to call at, or download cygwin.
>> thats not what I was talking about ... I know you can
>> *schedule*, but you cannot *script* (properly) re-read my
>> sentence above, I never complained about the scheduling
>> of stuff under windows, just the scripting
>You really don't need any scripting to speak of to do
>what you described- just pull from source control and
>However, Windows does come with scripting tools
>capable of rather more, if you plan something more
>> > You can
>> > get make from numerous sources, and nmake comes with VS.
>> > Not to mention numerous build tools like Ant for java
>> > (which is superior to make anyhow), and NAnt for .NET.
>> >
>> > As far as the multi-developer argument, you must be living
>> what multi-developer argument ? I used an example above, but
>> never said that it could not be done under windows. the
>> question is "i want to run one command, on one machine, that
>> will cleanly recompile the other 19 peoples projects and link
>> it with my bits of the projects and run a test cycle on it
>That's trivial.
>> the lack of a proper scripting environment means that the
>> rebuild and test process cannot be automated.
>You don't need proper scripting to do what you
>described. A .BAT file can do it. But Windows, nevertheless,
>has proper scripting. You just don't need it for this.
>> > In fact, most companies I've seen, at least here in Austin,
>> > including and especially Java houses, use Windows exclusively
>> > for the desktop and then mixed server environments, or Windows
>> > only, or Unix only. But Windows on the desktop is an invariant.
>> that's usually 'cos windows is the only choice for these
>> companies on the desktop. Every probably keeps sending them
>> mail in MSWord format, so they can't do without it. a common
>> form of lock-in.
>The reason why Windows is the Only Choice (tm) for
>these companies is, often, than they use software available
>only for it- and in many cases, that is custom software
>they wrote themselves. MS tools are pretty good at that
>sort of development.
>If it were a file format thing, they would be far less
>locked in. Lots of programs can read Office formats,
>and Office is available outside of Windows anyway.
>But when you have custom software, that's a whole
>'nother thing. Porting a VB/Access custom app to
>any other platform is just a nightmare on stilts.
>You may notice that neither VB nor Access is available
>on anything but Windows- even though Access is
>supposed to be part of Office, and Office has a Mac
>This is, perhaps, no accident.
>> remember, i said  "out-the-box" way above ... out-the-box, windows
>> does not let you do this ... period ... of all the systems
>> in existence, windows is the only one where you have to pay more
>> just to get more developers onto it.
>Microsoft licensing policies are very less, er, forgiving
>that those typical in the open source community, I'll
>give you that. However, I'd be surprised if they were
>the *only* company with such policies.
>However, it doesn't matter for professional development,
>because Microsoft's stuff is real cheap. They make their
>money on Windows OEM licenses and the like.
>For non-professional development, I grant you
>that the several thousand dollar pricetag of something
>like VS.NET looks more intimidating- but then,
>they don't need stuff like automated nightly builds.
>> yeah, but they dont come with windows. so that story is out the
>> window (pun intended :-) ... the reason that other systems are MORE
>> developer friendly, is because they COME with most of what a developer
>> needs to develop. windows comes with NOTHING that a developer needs
>> in order to develop, which is why I consider it to be the *least*
>> friendly to developers.
>I think unilaterally excluding everything that doesn't
>come on the OS CD is a little harsh. Development, somehow,
>still gets done on Windows. Perhaps other developers don't
>feel obliged to stick to what came with the OS?
>> so, can you answer this question:
>> Which is the only system to come without a *SINGLE* development tool ?
>> <insert drumroll here>
>> and the answer IS ______________
>Windows comes with a few simple tools, like
>Windows Scripting Host and a couple of languages
>for it.
>That's not *much*, but it's something.
>You're overplaying your hand. Yes, typical Linux
>distros do come with gcc, make, and an IDE or
>something like it.
>Indeed, they also often come with thing like a
>Linux just bundles more stuff at a lower price. That's
>a legitimate advantage, but it isn't *everything*.

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