Re: Elegance and Other Design Ideals
Posted: Feb 28, 2004 7:10 PM
> > The paper is in my read list so I can't comment on it.
> > after skimming through the examples and the conclusions
> > seems that the authors have some bias toward C++, as
> > try use the C++ solution to the problem to every other
> > language.
> Fair language comparisons are very hard - that's why I
> don't do them - but clearly authors and the OOPSLA program
> committee didn't think the paper was sloppy.
Just to clarify I don't think the paper is sloppy. AFAICS it's pretty good. But I still think the authors are trying to code a C++ solution in languages other than C++, not trying to solve a problem.
> > IMHO it would be better to present a problem to
> > groups using different languages and see they
> > it.> ...
> > An interesting fact is that the tenth program was
> > by a newly hired college graduate with no experience in
> > Haskell, other than a previous ten-day self study of
> > Haskell Report.
> It is nice to see someone trying to get experimental data.
> It's very hard to consider all factors, though.
Yes. The authors acknowledge this, saying the experiment doesn't prove anything. But still is quite amusing :)
> > We could also use the sources for each ICFP available,
> > several different languages are used to solve the same
> > problem, each using a different design.
> That reminds me: From ICFP Programming Contest 2003 rules:
> "The contest offers direct, head-to-head comparison of
> language technology and programming skill. We have a range
> of prizes for the winners: cash awards, books, invitations
> to the conference for students, and, of course, unlimited
> bragging rights. The prizes will be awarded at ICFP 2003
> in Uppsala this August."
> The results are here:
I was part of a team trying to compete in ICFP 2003, so I knew about the winning entry. AFAIK C++ didn't give a competitive edge to the winner, the algorithm did (and it could be written in any language). Also if the author didn't have access to 16 dual processor machines he could never use this tactic, so I don't think it is a valid argument for C++ (or any language this year). Seeing the results of the other years we can see a pattern of winning entries. It's usually of smart hackers using FPLs, so either FPLs give them an edge or FPLs attracts smart people ;)
> -- Bjarne Stroustrup: http://www.research.att.com/~bs