Making the move...

Chipp Walters chipp at
Tue Mar 28 05:33:19 EST 2006

Richard Gaskin wrote:

> PS: For a fun take on the flipside of frameworks, this post at Joel is a 
> hoot:
> <>

Ha! Great stuff, really!

Further down the page the author (IMO) does a great job of 
differentiating libraries vs frameworks. He states:

"I'd like to address the notion of using a framework vs. rolling your 
own framework.

I think it's a false dichotomy; I don't want to use any framework at all.

I know what several of you are thinking. I'd be out of my mind not to 
use some sort of framework. Am I honestly thinking of writing every 
single line of code that I'll need all on my own?

No, of course not.

What I'd really like to find are some appropriate *libraries* that I can 
use to provide several kinds of functionality for my project. Here's 
what I need:

* A library to use as a templating system for the presentation tier of 
my application. This API should be dirt simple.

* A library to use as a content repository (articles, essays, etc).

* A library providing a user-management API, for creating, editing, and 
deleting users, and assigning them different privileges.

* A library providing a threaded discussion forum API. This code should 
have *no* front-end gui. It should just provide an API of forum-related 
services that I'll need in building my webapp. I'll build my own JSP GUI 
on top of it.

* A library providing multi-user blogging capabilities.

Why is it so difficult to find simple libraries that provide these kinds 
of services?

The distinction between a library and a framework is subtle, but I think 
critical. A library is a collection of code that I don't have to write 
myself. It provides me with a set of objects and methods that I can use 
to build me application. If the library doesn't do quite what I want, I 
can make some small modifications or throw it away and use a different 

A framework, on the other hand, always attempts to redefine the entire 
applilcation architecture. And, if the framework ends up not meeting my 
needs, I need to throw away my entire application, because everything 
I've written is defined in terms of the framework's methodology.

A library is something *contained* within my code.

A framework is a *container* for my application."

Interesting distinction...


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