newbie response

Rob Cozens rcozens at pon.net
Sun Jun 2 11:16:01 CDT 2002


>I've been following the Revolution lists because it is the closest 
>thing available to Hypercard but I've been exploring all the 
>alternatives because I've come to believe the dominate opinion that 
>Hypercard and things like it, are not real programming environments.

Hi Kee,

I think you'll find you can use your HyperTalk experience to leverage 
a shorter learning curve and produce better apps than starting over 
with a new programming paradigm.

If you let "the dominate opinion" take precedence over your own 
experience, 1. you're setting yourself up for frustration and 2. 
you're guaranteed to lag behind current technology.

If the platform allows you to realize your creative specifications in 
a manner that is acceptable to you (and your customers if your output 
is commercial), it is a real programming environment.

It's a tradition in the industry to downplay the competition by 
slamming it categorically.

1.  "COBOL is for business applications, FORTRAN is for scientific 
applications."  The MIS I created for Oakland Police Department was 
criticized in a consultant's report (written after I had left without 
ever consulting me) because it was programmed in FORTRAN instead of 
COBOL.  The consultant didn't bother to mention that OPD's 
Computer-Assisted Dispatch System, the front end to MIS and 
programmed by Boeing, was also written in FORTRAN.  Despite this 
grievous choice of programming languages, the system was used daily 
for over 15 years.

2.  When I worked in my first "mixed" environment, many of the people 
who used PCs looked down on Mac users saying "a Mac is not a real 
computer."  I believe there are still those who would try to make a 
case that Macs are not suitable platforms for business despite the 
number of successful business & governmental Mac installations.

3.  "Put a mouse on it, and a PC is just as good as a Mac."  Standard 
IBM sale approach...in the days when most PC software didn't know the 
mouse existed.

4.  "Xtalk platforms are not real programming environments 
because..."  Refer the next person who says that to you to me, and 
I'm foole enough to think I could ask a few questions and suggest a 
few points to ponder and leave that person questioning whether they 
should ever make that assertion again.

...Though I must admit the perception was originally instigated by 
Apple so as not to scare "ordinary people" from using HyperCard.
-- 

Rob Cozens
CCW, Serendipity Software Company
http://www.oenolog.com/who.htm

"And I, which was two fooles, do so grow three;
Who are a little wise, the best fooles bee."

from "The Triple Foole" by John Donne (1572-1631)



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