Saturday, March 6, 2004

Star (language) Wars

This is a logbook entry from Minh Tran, a student in my Introduction to Quantitative Software Engineering Class. Logbook entries, for readers who have not been in my classes, are reflections on software engineering topics done on a weekly basis as part of the course requirements. I feel that maintaining a logbook is an important mechanism for learning over your professional career and want to get my students in the habit of maintianing one. Minh was responding to an entry I provided in class that suggested that one sure way of getting develolpers into a debate is to ask what their favorite programming language is. We discussed reasons why developers felt that way which included issues of support, relative performance, first language learned ... Minh expands this discussion to issues of Microsoft's support for languages and asks for some input from our readers. Later.

Minh Tran's logbook entry:

In class 9, Professor gave us an entry about "Star (languages) Wars" : C++, JAVA. Fortunately, I had an

opportunity to work on JAVA, HTML, ASP, SQL on Microsoft, and C++, MQ Series, Oracle on UNIX/LINUX for the last couple of years. Currently, I work on new projects that use Visual C++6, and Access for database. 80% of coding is done and being unit tested. The software release date is near. As I know of, Microsoft stopped supporting Visual C++ and has a new tool Visual.Net using XML & ADO.Net for data access. Few weeks ago, one of the projects' leaders mentioned about the new tool to me, he wanted to migrate standard C++ to .Net. I did not know what to tell him, because I have no knowledge about .Net, neither the team.

Should we stay with Visual C++, or use the new tool .Net or JAVA ?

Your inputs are greatly appreciated.