I see many people here complaining about this language without even trying to understand it, most people here never ever used this, so how can they complain? I've been using Rev for about 5 or 6 years now, I run a single person consulting business here and I've delivered web applications, desktop applications for mac, windows and linux for many US Universities and foreign universities among other serious clients. I've done it all in Rev without ever reverting to an external (this is what we call C modules), I am able to do all my network, RDBMS, logic and gui needs in Rev alone and deliver native applications to the big three OSes out there (mac, win and linux), now with RevServer (our PHP like engine), I am also able to reuse the same business code in a webapp.
Revolution represents a hug advantage for me because I can really code faster in it, I am not pulling magic numbers from a hat here, I am saying from personal hands on experience for at least 5 years. Before Rev I've coded in C, DELPHI, VB, REBOL, RealBASIC and Scheme (could never deliver a scheme app). My code is as fast any other but was developed faster and cheaper for me, so it means that I can develop more software for less, which is great for someone in the consulting business. Let me summarize what I think are the great Rev strenghts:
The english like syntax is great, at first I found it too verbose but it grew on me. It is a great feature for those that are just comming into programming, for the seasoned coder, I think it is an acquired taste. We all can code with dot notations, OOP stuff, we are confortable with cryptic syntax such as i++; with all our tokens and semicolons but I regard those like stocolm syndrome, we've used hostile syntax for so long that now we think that if it is human readable and clear then it is bad for some esoteric reason that we can't really explain. This whole discussion about what code is bigger is actually irrelevant, the discussion should be what code is easier to write and maintain. Rev code is actually pleasant. I'd take something like "put char -1 of word 2 of line 5 of field "name" into mySweetVariable" over any split and dot notation or regex thing.
In Rev we avoid the write-compile-debug loop. With environments such as VB and Delphi, your standard workflow would be to code a little, build your application launch it attached to a debugger and check for bugs. This is tedious and time consuming. In Rev, like those graphic programs such as photoshop, we have a pointer tool that can be in interact mode or edit mode, if it is in interact mode you can click around your application just like a user using it, the edit mode you use to select controls to change properties or script, so with a flick of the mouse, not compilation needed, I can try my app from inside the environment. This is huge! It is like a lisp REPL or some other interactive mode in other languages but graphical, try as you build and yes, we have a debugger that works with those tools, we often just build standalones by the end of development process after all is tested. I can't stress how faster this make you code, you can experiment much more in interactive environments such as Rev than you would do if you're coding in C.
Another very important feature is the ability to deploy on Linux, Mac, Windows from the same code with no modification, it just builds standalones for all those systems. Imagine you're a VB developer or a C developer, you code mostly on windows for example, then a prospective client quotes for a simple macintosh desktop application, with VB you're simply lost, with C there's a whole lot of new APIs to learn if you don't use a cross platform GUI toolkit. With Rev, you just code normally and in the end checks the "build for Mac OS". (before the pedantry, you should have a mac and mac os knowledge before trying to deliver professional apps for that platform, but you get the idea.). Now with RevServer we can write webapps (we could before but was harder) and with RevWeb plugin we'll be able to deliver in browser application with a plugin not unlike flash.
If you fell I am advertising for the RunRev company and it's language, then rest assure that I am. There's no shame in defending the language you like and that gets money in your bank account. I use this language, I know it's features and shortcommings and I use it every day. I would not try to write a operating system or a brand new linux sound system or a 3D game in it but for the tasks that it is good, then, it is really good. The first time I approached Rev, I though, that is no real language, but then, I decided to cast aside my pre conceptions and try it out, that was five or six years ago and I am still smiling.