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rantingrick 07-02-2011 10:59 PM

The end to all language wars and the great unity API to come!
 
Hello fellow programmers, scripters, hackers, and debutantes.

I have cross posted this thread to three groups that i believe need to
unite under the flag of unity for the benefit of all. Because when we
unite we not only help ourselves, we promote freedom. In the next few
paragraphs i will expose the source of this problem and propose a
viable solution for how WE can solve the problem!

It saddens me when i see API's that don't include at least three
language choices. No *one* language is going to please the masses. I
understand *WHY* this happens however it should never, *EVER* happen
and i cannot lay blame solely on application developers because "we"
have failed to provide them NOT ONLY with a unifying API model, but
also our respective "plugin" interfaces to that unifying model.

Yes folks "WE" are to blame for this dilemma. Who is "we" exactly?
"We" is any language community who's language exhibits the traits of
an API scripting language. For me that group includes (at the minimum)
Python, Ruby, Basic, Perl, JavaScript, and whoever else wants to be
part of this group.

Everyone knows that no one language can solve all problems. And
likewise everyone knows that even when two languages are similar (in
few ways, or in many ways) people are always going to draw lines in
the sand and prefer to use one language over another. It is natural to
simply ones working environment. How many of you folks speak English
on Mondays and Mandarin on Tuesdays and Spanish on Wednesdays and
French on Thursdays and Bulgarian on Fridays and Pig Latin on
Saturdays and Orc on Sundays? Anyone? Why i am not surprised!

But we do this very same asinine thing on a daily basis whist jumping
through the productivity limiting hoops. The stench of which rises up
from every community of language developers in the world. We have not
only created a mutual cess pool of laziness and selfishness , we are
wallowing and rooting around in it completely oblivious of our
collectively bombastic stupidity.

So i ask yous, why should we continue to propagate hateful feelings,
or have some among us feel left out because their favorite language is
not included as an alternative in the API they are using at the time?
Why should i need to switch back and forth between multiple languages,
multiple syntaxes, multiple editors, multiple help files, multiple API
help files, and suffer multiple headaches just because the status quo
is to be selfish and not care about the greater "Programming
Community".

"Community". Hmm, now that is a word that can be applied in many
dimensions. The "Python Community" is a community that inherits from
the "Programming Community"... as is the "Ruby Community" and the
"JavaScript Community" and so on and so forth. We are naturally good
at taking care of our immediate community but for the community once
removed we are failing miserably! And this community is the most
important community of all! When we damage the programming community
we damage ourselves and everyone else!

[Thought Exercise] Just imagine for a second if automobiles where
engineered the way programming languages are currently engineered. But
wait! Before we jump into insightful analyolgies we must first
understand why the automobile is such a versatile feat of engineering.
The automobile -- no matter how large or small, not matter if truck or
car or motorcycle or moped-- is designed to interface with a system...
the "highway" system. The user of an automobile is never restricted
from driving his favorite car. He is always happy because he is free.
Free to choose and free to be.... HOWEVER NOT THE CASE WITH APIs!

For API's we have just tossed freedom to the wind fro the sake of
selfishness. We would have multiple language developers creating
languages without any regard for a language independent system to plug
said language into. But i am here to tell you that we can be different
with our language style and still promote the freedom to choose. The
tool is NOT Ruby or Python or whatever. The tool is software which
manifests itself as "ones" and "zeros". Layers of abstraction that all
compile to the same base units... 1's and 0's. Languages are
abstractions of ones and zeros. Languages are NOT tools. Therefore we
all have a vested interest in a unifying API.

Well some would say... " it is up to the developer of an application
what language they choose"... and this is true. But i say they can
choose to allow the users to choose thereby maintaining not only a
happier user base, but a more productive one as well.

When are we going to see the light and start unifying our collective
differences into a singular plug and play API and allowing the user of
"our" abstraction language, "our" for loop, or "our" version of
stdout.write the ultimate of all choices... the choice of FREEDOM.

for danish inspirations see:

http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Uno

Thank You

rantingrick 07-03-2011 12:58 AM

Re: The end to all language wars and the great unity API to come!
 

Take Pidgin[1] as an example. Pidgin is a universal chat client. It's
a glue between the many chat clients that exist... It's a monkey patch
for chat multiplicity but you get the idea. However the Unity API
cannot be a monkey patch. It must be a mutual undertaking from the
beginning. Don't you people understand? Multiplicity is undermining
our future evolution.

[Anecdote]
Once when i was a very young lad (long before computers were
mainstream) i became terribly troubled by the fact that every
generation must spend roughly a quarter of it's lifetime just catching
up to the knowledge of the last generation. This fact does not seem
very troublesome at first glance, but lets create a microcosm...
<Tangential Meanderings>...what if you suffered from amnesia every
morning and you had to spend 1/4 of the day catching up to where you
were the day before? This would kill your productivity! But that is
not the point i am making here folks! <\back on track> The fact that
we constantly re-invent the wheel is a product of a very important
missing feature of most humans of which is devastating to our
evolution as intelligent agents.

[The Punchline]
Anyway, my solution to this collective "re-education" was the upload.
We could simply plug up, upload all former knowledge, and off we'd
go!

[The Knockout]
However when i shared my solution with someone [unnamed] he laughed
and said: "But that would take the challenge out of life. Nothing
remaining to learn if you can just download it"... aghast with horror
i just shook my head. This person had no imagination!

[The Moral]
Stop being sheep and start the revolution people! Stop being slaves to
multiplicity and be the master of the singularity. Our future (or lack
thereof) is in YOUR hands!

[1] http://www.pidgin.im/

rantingrick 07-03-2011 02:24 AM

Re: The end to all language wars and the great unity API to come!
 
On Jul 2, 8:49*pm, Chris Angelico <ros...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Sun, Jul 3, 2011 at 11:43 AM, rantingrick <rantingr...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > I mean what is the point of having two languages with the exact same
> > syntax?

>
> > Ruby: print 'blah'
> > Python: print 'blah'

>
> > Ruby: for x in blah: blah_blah_blah
> > Python: for x in blah: blah_blah_blah

>
> > WHAT?

>
> What's the point of having fifty languages in which "x+y" is an
> expression whose value is the sum of x and y? Let's ditch 'em all and
> just use one language, since _obviously_ the languages have the exact
> same syntax.


It seem ludicrous at first glance but it is true! We have to much re-
inventing going on!

> Common syntax is an aid to learning. It means you can transfer
> knowledge from one language to another. It doesn't make either
> useless.


Why do you constantly propagate multiplicity? Why do you feel that we
need 100 or so languages when about three would cover everything? Sure
people are free to create whatever Frankenstein language they want in
the confines of their hobby time, but we need standards and we need
them NOW.

We want the world and we want it now!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkp8f...ailpage#t=472s


Steven D'Aprano 07-03-2011 03:21 AM

Re: The end to all language wars and the great unity API to come!
 
rantingrick wrote:

> Hello fellow programmers, scripters, hackers, and debutantes.



Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.



--
Steven



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