People sure are excited about the Google App Engine. Especially people who have some other favorite language besides Python. A significant number of the issue tracker items are of the form “Please add support for $MY_LANGUAGE”, where $MY_LANGUAGE might be VB.NET, C#, PHP, Java, Groovy, Ruby, Perl, etc. ad nauseam. I’m not going to comment on the language-wars aspect. But if you want your language supported (this goes for any issue in the tracker in fact), the thing to do is not to go to one of those issue pages and add a comment that consists of “+1”.
I just wanted to post a quick note for anyone who is in my region and interested in functional programming that the Western Mass. Developers Group is hosting a presentation by Rich Hickey, creator of the Clojure language, on March 20th. This event was put in motion by Lou Franco, who is doing a “20 days of Clojure” series on his blog in the days running up to the event. Chas Emerick has arranged the meeting space.
BusinessWeek Online has an article today called “Java? It’s So Nineties” which purports to track the fall of Java from enterprise grace. I’ve posted my own brief notes on that theme and I don’t disagree with the general thrust of the article, but it is distractingly, embarrassingly overflowing with technical bloopers. A sampling: Java – once the hippest of hip software… Java certainly had its moments of irrational popularity during the applet mania of the ’90s.
The Apple Developer Connection recently posted what looks like a nice introduction to PyObjC. It’s even got QuickTime movies showing how to work with Interface Builder. Cool. The enthusiasm on the page is palpable: PyObjC’s maturity is unmatched - it’s been around longer than even Apple’s Java bridge (it originated on NeXTstep). Meanwhile, in case you missed it, the Cocoa-Java bindings are deprecated: Features added to Cocoa in Mac OS X versions later than 10.
I have to admit that I carry big shield of skepticism when I circulate exhibit halls. Luckily a fellow attendee tipped me off to OpenLaszlo, an extremely spiffy system for server-side, declarative generation of Flash content. What this means for somebody like me – someone who, despite a lot of background in visual design, would really prefer to work directly with code – is that very sweet Flash-based interfaces can be constructed via XML.