What killed Smalltalk could kill Python

Grant Edwards invalid at invalid.invalid
Thu Jan 22 00:10:25 CET 2015


On 2015-01-21, Chris Angelico <rosuav at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Jan 22, 2015 at 6:18 AM, Grant Edwards <invalid at invalid.invalid> wrote:
>> On 2015-01-21, Steven D'Aprano <steve+comp.lang.python at pearwood.info> wrote:
>>> In 2009, Robert Martin gave a talk at RailsConf titled "What Killed
>>> Smalltalk Could Kill Ruby".
>>
>> But does he answer the more important question "and can we use it to
>> kill PHP?".
>
> PHP won't die so long as there are people willing to apologize for
> its every flaw and defend it on the basis that huge sites X, Y, and Z
> all use it. But we don't need it to die. All we need is for Python to
> live, and we can ignore PHP and write Unicode-aware web sites with
> simple, trustworthy entry points, and not worry about the rest.

I happily ignored PHP until a couple years back when we decided to use
PHP for the web site on a small embedded Linux system.  The reasoning
was that we didn't have any significant internal web site development
skills, and using PHP on Linux would make it easy to contract out the
web site design using an off-the-shelf light-weight framework.

[At the time, a couple of us could stumble around with HTML enough to
generate web pages that looked fresh out of 1995, but that was about
it. The web pages in our older devices looked rather "retro" and had
pretty limited functionality.]

At a certain point we couldn't afford the contractors any longer and
somebody had to take over maintenance and development of the web
stuff.  The JavaScript and jQuery part of it isn't bad.  Both have had
some thought put into them: they have their quirks but there's a
certain internal consistency and elegence.

PHP, on the other hand makes me want to scream.  It's all just a
random mess -- it's nothing _but_ quirks.  As one of the contractors
once said: PHP is like a combination of all the worst features of
bash, perl, and C.

I briefly considered trying to switch to Python, but the Python
footprint is just too big...

-- 
Grant Edwards               grant.b.edwards        Yow! RELATIVES!!
                                  at               
                              gmail.com            



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