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Everything old is new again. - Elf M. Sternberg
Everything old is new again.
This morning one of my co-workers, who's only ever worked in third-generation languages, was trying to track down a bug in a python-to-C interface. He IM'd me with a short block of code and asked, "Is this the constructor for an array instance in C?"

I laughed. It was, for some definition of "constructor." I found it so amusing that we used to act as if constructors were merely syntactical sugar layered on top of C-type initializers. Now, we look at C-type initializers and call them "primitive constructors." That's progress.

This reminds me of the comment someone made recently that "patterns of programming" are in fact evidence of weakness in a programming language. We should not merely document what we do, but learn how to make "what we do" a part of the language (or the language's standard library) such that it becomes invisible.

Current Mood: geeky geeky
Current Music: Nana Katase, Babe

2 comments or Leave a comment
voidrandom From: voidrandom Date: June 3rd, 2007 04:57 am (UTC) (Link)
lucky_otter From: lucky_otter Date: June 3rd, 2007 04:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
C *is* a 3GL. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third-generation_programming_language

Never seen those terms. Not much in use today. They don't seem very useful in describing the programming languages we now use.
2 comments or Leave a comment