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Showing posts from January, 2008

About the right tools for the job

Some time ago I was involved in a running debate about whether we should be using Ruby on Rails rather than the Java stack (junkyard?) that we were using. At the time, I did not really participate in the discussion except to note that everything seemed to be at least 5 times too difficult. I had this strong intuition that there were so many moving parts that that was the problem. The application itself was not really that hard. My assertions really ticked some of my colleagues off; for which I apologize; sort of.

I guess that I come from a tradition of high-level programming languages, by high level, I would say that I would consider LISP to be a medium level language, and Prolog is slightly better. I would say that it is a pretty common theme of my career that I end up having to defend the position of using high-level tools. I have gotten a number of arguments, ranging from "it will not be efficient enough" to "how do you expect to find enough XX programmers?". I u…