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Re: What databases have taught me

From: Bob Badour <bbadour_at_pei.sympatico.ca>
Date: Tue, 27 Jun 2006 22:27:48 GMT
Message-ID: <Ehiog.3085$pu3.74327@ursa-nb00s0.nbnet.nb.ca>


Bruno Desthuilliers wrote:

> erk a écrit :
>

>> Dan wrote:
>>
>>> Absolutely true!  Relational or object-oriented, it doesn't matter,
>>> it's the thought process and ability to apply critical analysis to
>>> problems that makes or breaks the project or solves the problem in the
>>> most elegant way possible.
>>
>> This seems to imply that the languages and other formalisms are all the
>> same, though, and I don't think that's true at all.

>
> It does not imply that RM and OO are "the same", but that the real
> problem is elsewhere.

You have yet to establish that my description of the source of the problem was in any way inaccurate:

"One might add that the 80% of complicated code Bruno saw resulted from having a surfeit of structures to choose from and a paucity of available manipulations in the first place."

Precise languages encourage precise thinking. Imprecise languages encourage imprecise thinking. For tasks where precision of thought is important, precise languages are superior to imprecise languages. Computer programming requires precise thought.

I suggest that you sometime read some of these EWD's I frequently reference. They reflect the beauty of a much more powerful and well-trained mind than mine or probably any contributing in either of these newsgroups. I suggest you start with EWD709 and EWD68:

http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/EWD/transcriptions/EWD07xx/EWD709.html http://www.cs.utexas.edu/users/EWD/transcriptions/EWD00xx/EWD68.html

>> Yes, you can write
>> horrid code using Lisp, Haskell, Java, assembler, XML, SQL tables,
>> relations, etc., and you can write good systems in them as well, but
>> that doesn't mean that some languages and constructs aren't better all
>> around than some others. To assert otherwise is to assert that
>> languages and systems have no impact on the way we think, and I think
>> that's silly.

>
> Flawed logic here. The fact that languages[/systems/tools/whatever] have
> an impact on the way we think does not imply that some languages[etc]
> are better "all around" than other.

Your logic is the flawed logic. He did not say 'this language is necessarily better than that language because...'. He merely pointed out that your argument failed to prove the impossibility of such a language. Your argument also fails to contradict the idea that a language can be worse all around too.

  It only implies that some
> languages[etc] *can* be better (ie: more appropriate) for certain
> persons for a certain class of tasks.

No, his argument implies that you have failed to prove the conjecture that no universally superior or inferior languages can exist within some universe of languages.

  So, since it's a person that is
> doing the job, the purely technical aspect may not be the most important
> factor in success or failure.

That in no way affects your failure to prove the impossibility of superior or inferior languages. In fact, the introduction of psychology only introduces another method by which a language can be universally good or universally bad.

> The truth is that anyone trying to sell you a silver bullet is liar.

Hear! Hear! That's the first sensible thing you have written here. Received on Tue Jun 27 2006 - 17:27:48 CDT

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