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Comment Why limit yourself (Score 1) 897

I'll never understand this sort of attitude. I would hazard a guess that this person has never programmed using Visual Studio and C#. If he's worked in it for a while and doesn't like it, that's one thing, but I bet he hasn't ever brought up VS. I've met a lot of people like this. FOrtunately for them, they worked for the govt. and it didn't really maater what they programmed in because they wouldn't produce much and the project would fail in two years, to be replaced by another.

I've programmed in many languages, only one did I absolutely hate, and that was Ada. But,, even though I hated the language, I saw an opportunity to do a set of binding to X Windows. I spent two months writing that, then sold through a compiler vendor. The language was dying, but most government programs were required to buy the compiler and the bindings. They would then stick the thing on the shelf to gather dust. I would get a check for about $5k a month for royalties on a piece of software that no one ever used. This went on for two years, before the market finally died.

I've programmed in many languages, C#, Java, C++, C, FORTRAN, Lisp, PL/I, COBOL, Ada, Smalltalk, assembly, and a smalltalk variant that I devised at one point. I've learned something from all of them. Well, with Ada, I think all I learned is how not to design a language. I think changing languages every now in then ultimately makes you a better programmer.

Personally, I like C# and the whole .Net environment. I like it a lot better than Java. I think the new language additions like linq and lambda expressions are awesome. It's almost artistic to put together a well crafted linq query or use lambda expressions to do multithreaded programming using the new language extensions. And now with .Net 4.0, the dynamic language runtime has been added. I haven't really used this much as of yet, but I think it's an interesting feature. Plus there is the whole MVC framework for web pages. I am learning this now and so far like it a lot.

Learning .Net may be a good thing to do just as a hedge. Not sure where Java is going. Sun has been a zombie for a while now, and who knows what Oracle will do. The language has been pretty stagnant for a while. There is no one really moving the language in new directions like Microsoft Research does with C#. That's a shame. Java brought lots of great new ideas into the main stream of programming, but now it's about 2 generations behind where C# is. If it continues like this, C# or some other new language will just eclipse it like Java and C# did to C++. THen the Java programmers wll be scrambling to learn something new.

Having said this, if someone came to me and offered me double what I make today to work in Java, I'd take it. When it comes donw to it, If I wasn't get paid, I wouldn't go in and sit in a cube every day and write code, i'd find something else to do, so why not make the most I can. I may not like working in Java as much as C#, but it won't kill me and the reality is, the project, the people and the environment are more important for a good job than whether you code in C# or Java.

Comment Re:Dumbest idea in, well, a long time, really dumb (Score 1) 270

Yes, I agree with you about the next meal thing, it was an exagerration to make a point. I have traveled throughout Africa and I live in Panama, which many consider to be a third world country. I don't think buying computers for all the children here in this part of Panama would help their education. A great many of the people here don't have electricity in their homes, let alone clean water.

I think spending this money on clean water systems would save lives and spending it on education for the third world would help their countries as a whole. Dumping millions of dollars on computers seems more like a way to dump money into the pockets of the companies making chips and computer parts.

I know if they did that here, most would end up broken or unused. A few would end up in the hands of kids that would use them and make use of them, all the others would end up being thrown out in the yard, or in the ocean where people dump all their other trash.

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I think there's a world market for about five computers. -- attr. Thomas J. Watson (Chairman of the Board, IBM), 1943