Python should try to displace Java

Kim Petersen kp at
Tue Aug 12 16:39:55 CEST 2003

Brandon J. Van Every wrote:
> Doug Tolton wrote:
>>On Mon, 11 Aug 2003 18:43:08 -0700, "Brandon J. Van Every"
>>>- in 5 years, nobody will be doing significant amounts of new
>>>application development in C++.  The writing is on the wall: garbage
>>>collection is essential.  Any C++ code will be support and legacy
>>That's a ridiculous blanket statement.  People will be doing C++
>>development for a long time beyond that.  There are people still
>>writing Cobol for crying out loud.
> Do you honestly believe that people are doing a significant amount of new
> application development in Cobol, as opposed to maintenance work?

You can bet your life on it. When you have a *very* large portfolio of 
Cobol programs (and a lot of companies have) - then you know that you 
cannot change to another programming language - without setting back the 
development years - you might try and run a seperate developing line (we 
do here) to catch up with the Cobol line (in several years).
>>>- Microsoft is already implementing said strategy across all levels
>>>of the company today.  Microsoft developers don't do much C++
>>>development anymore. Various upcoming products are being written
>>>entirely in C#.
>><sigh> just what we need.  More buggy slow products from MS that have
>>Memory Leaks the size of the Mississippi.  C# is not a good
>>development platform yet.  Heck they are practically still in the
>>standard MS beta period.  Everyone knows not to use a MS product on
>>version 1.0
> Ignore the trend at your peril.  A MS product is one thing.  A MS initiative
> across the entire company is quite another.  The last time they did that,
> Internet Explorer put Netscape in the doghouse.  Never, ever, ignore or
> diminish what Microsoft decides to do as an entire company.

There is a large difference between a product (IE) and a programming 
language. All this reminds me of the hype first C++ and then Java got - 
none of those are today all pervasive. (if your line of thought is 
correct - then we *all* would be programming either VC++ or VB).

>>>- Python will never displace C# on Windows.  It's Microsoft's home
>>>turf and you can't fight directly with The Beast.  You will see UNIX
>>>boxes running Python, not Windows boxes.
>>That's a bold statement, considering the abysmal adoption rate of C#.
> Within Microsoft, the adoption of C# is universal.  That tends to have a
> powerful effect on ISV Windows development over time.

As far as i've read up on .NET/C# - the language doesn't matter - whats 
to stop ppl continuing the programming language they've always used?
(eg. Cobol (which exists in several versions in .NET).

>>C# isn't the dominant windows programming language currently, rather
>>its Visual Basic.  Java has far more applications written for Windows
>>than C# does.  MS really shot themselves in the foot when they went to
>>dotnet, essentially the adopted the Java platform 8 years after Java.
>>Now they are playing catchup with an inferior product.  I doubt
>>they'll ever catch up to Java overall.
> The problem with your thinking here is there's very clear evidence that
> Microsoft can and does catch up to and surpass technologies that they have
> fumblingly cloned.  In fact, that's the basic Microsoft corporate
> philosophy.  Version 1.0 sucks, 2.0 is ok... 5.0 actually is a really good
> product and then the competition can't catch up anymore.  Example: DirectX.
> When it started it was complete garbage.  Nowadays it is technically
> superior to OpenGL in most areas.  Why they don't finally implement doubles
> and put OpenGL out of its misery, I'm not sure.

sorry - won't comment on above - its so damned platformcentric that it 
entirely misses whatever point you may have been trying to put over.
> Why can MS catch up?  Because Open Source people assume their technological
> superiority and rest on their laurels.  They think they don't have to market
> because they are technically superior.  Also, their ranks are populated with
> strong engineers who don't *like* marketing, as a matter of basic
> personality.  They never get it in their heads that they have to
> counter-market to some degree in order to hold the line.  If you don't do
> any marketing, Microsoft completely out-markets you and then you die,
> technical merit or not.

Assume for a moment that Linux takes off on the desktop (as indications 
could be read) - where is your argument?

>>>- Sun is about to die.  It has done nothing for anyone lately and
>>>has no further tricks up its sleeve.
>>People have been saying this for years.  I'll believe it when I see it.
> Read a paper.

Which ones ? Sun-pro, Sun-Neutral or Sun-contra's?

As another example - Unix has been pronounced dead since the late-80's - 
as far as i can see, it seems to live better than ever (in Linux/BSD 
etc.) - and that was in all the papers as well...

All the papers have also been stating that MS is dominant on the server 
platform (all during the 90's) - slowly the picture is revealed, that 
they _never_ had any dominance in this marked - and that they are at the 
moment even failing to hold on to the marked they have....

> You got it!  And development stops when a langauge loses all meaningful
> mindshare.  What is the battle of mindshare?  A marketing battle.  It is not
> a technological battle, except in the grossest terms of complete
> incompetence.  Time and again, the marketplace has proven that kludgy but
> well marketed products carry the day.  They only fail when they absolutely
> can't do the job.

Again Fortran is very much alive - Cobol, Lisp and loads others are also 
very much alive - and when is the last time you've seen marketing for those?

>>If that hapens it will be because something *significantly* better came
> along.
> No, it is not an engineering meritocracy.  Look at a company like DEC.
> Wonderful technology company.  Couldn't market its way out of a paper bag.
> That's a warning for this c.l.p crowd.  Don't sit around congratulating
> yourselves on how superior your techology is.  Recognize the strategic
> competition and market against it

You seem to have failed in the understanding of the OpenSource movement 
... Read up on the *why's* of its success - and you will find that it 
has naught to do with marketing.

>>those with the best technology and the best economic system prevail
>>against inefficient and inferior models.
> You have *got* to be kidding me.  Intel??!?  Windows??!?

intel => economics made it win
windows => intel economics made it win (in the 90's)

Med Venlig Hilsen / Regards

Kim Petersen - Kyborg A/S (Udvikling)
IT - Innovationshuset
Havneparken 2
7100 Vejle
Tlf. +4576408183 || Fax. +4576408188

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