Could Python supplant Java?

Chad Myers cmyers at
Thu Aug 22 00:59:59 CEST 2002

"goose" <spammenotguse at> wrote in message
news:3D640BCE.4090201 at
> Dan Johnson wrote:
> <snip>
> > Serious question:
> >
> > What is so developer-hostile about Windows?
> >
> Serious Answer(tm):
> 1. No development tools come installed with it. Without
> even a single compiler, how does a "developer" develop ?
> The result is usually to download/purchase a development
> tool.

That's largely irrelevant. First, because there are many
freely downloadable tools, second because most tools
shipped with the OS are out of date by the time they're
pressed to the CD and require updates anyhow, third because
most developers are commercial and paying for development
software is not a bad thing.

MS got where it was by cowtowing to the developers. Why
do you think Win9x hung around so long? If MS was
interested in purely pleasing end users, they would've
ditched Windows at 3.1 and gone immediately to Windows NT.
Instead, developers wanted to continue writing their crappy
code which hooked into all parts of the OS and caused all
sorts of instability (which they promptly blamed on MS).
Only recently has MS been taking a tough stance on developers
with 2K/XP, security initiatives, logo programs, etc to
get them to stop shipping crap code and making MS look so
bad in the process.

Windows may not be as C friendly as Linux, but it is
developer friendly and, indeed, many developers develop
products for it. This is as obvious as sun light.

> 2. No proper scripting environment to do nightly
> build & test cycles (cron'd to run at midnight).

Task manager supports scheduled tasks. That was in
Windows 98, or IE 4 for Win95, IIRC.

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.

> (IDE's are nice if you're gonna sit at your desk and click
> on the buttons, but on a 20 person project, I want to be
> able to get everyone to save their work to a server, and
> have *everything* recompiled from scratch, so that if
> anyone made a change that broke someone else component, we'd
> find out the next morning, not six weeks later when we are
> trying to integrate our code together). The lack of a system
> provided make utility is depressing.

It's not like it is impossible to make on Windows. 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
in a hole, because there are far more multi-developer
projects on Windows than any other OS. I mean, just about
every Fortune 500 company has armies of VB, VC++, Java
or other developers working on Windows as their dev platform.
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.

> 3. The inability to easily let everyone use *the* *same* *machine*
> to compile, all at the same time (via an ssh shell, or an xterm
> if the developer likes GUI IDE's).

Hrm, I've worked for 4 companies now that have build machines or
build farms using Terminal Services or a combination of other
utilities. 2 of them had automated build and integration
environments for eXtreme Programming that would monitor VSS or
CVS for changes and automatically build and integrate changes.
All Windows.

> This way it is possible to make
> sure that no developer is using a compiler which could possibly
> be patched to a different version than the others (autoupdate?).
> 4. The lack of a single decent editor ... 'nuff said.

Um... Visual Studio 6? Visual Studio .NET for .NET. Much more
consistency than the thousand or so editors on *nix.
I've heard the horror stories of vi, emacs, IDEs, etc all trying
to cooperate. I know many companies using VS to integrate and
collaborate and it works very well, especially with integrated
VSS support.

Seems like you really don't know what you're talking about.


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