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Heron-Centric: Ruminations of a Language Designer
Heron just got Slashdotted
by Christopher Diggins
December 9, 2004
I finally got an article posted to on Heron. This is a very nice boost in visibility for the language.


I finally got a post on Heron accepted at, which has generated a fair amount of traffic. This is good, because generating interest and even simple awareness of a new unproven programming language is very hard!

There is quite a bit of negative feedback, which even though it is unpleasant doesn't really deter me much. Half of the negative comments seem to be based on the fact that many programmers don't appreciate static typing.

Not all comments are negative though, as a poster named Crimsane said:

The gaps between C/C++/[c#|java] are pretty hefty, perhaps this will be a good language to know when you want something inbetween.

Part of the problem is that there are very few programmers with a broad enough background to appreciate Heron. Without some appreciation of techniques like Design by Contract, Aspect Oriented Programming, Template Metaprogramming, etc., I think it is very hard to appreciate what Heron is all about.

I think the other problem is that people evaluate Heron in five minutes or less. This is kind of infuriating, but I think probably unavoidable. It would take someone with a real flair for hyperbole, and marketing gimmickry to make Heron look great on first glance.

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About the Blogger

Christopher Diggins is a software developer and freelance writer. Christopher loves programming, but is eternally frustrated by the shortcomings of modern programming languages. As would any reasonable person in his shoes, he decided to quit his day job to write his own ( ). Christopher is the co-author of the C++ Cookbook from O'Reilly. Christopher can be reached through his home page at

This weblog entry is Copyright © 2004 Christopher Diggins. All rights reserved.

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