1 Aug 2008

Where the heck is my flying car?

If you're a programming language aficionado, life is hard. You learn powerful languages like Ruby, Python, Haskell, etc, but many times you have to use C++ for "real" work, like it or not. From one point of view, it's depressing.

But if you step back and look through a long enough timeframe, there's been significant progress. When I was in high school, the default language was C++. By the time I graduated from college, the default moved to Java, which was a big improvement. Java is even the native API for Android. And iPhone and Mac OS X use Objective C, which is a dynamically typed language!

The thesis seems to be that the mainstream is not doomed to second-rate languages. It evolves, though perhaps not as fast as some of us would like. And since the high end of programming languages hasn't moved much in the past couple of decades, if not longer, if this trend continues, one day the average programmer will be using a very powerful language.

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