Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Sacred Cows of Software Development

Reading through the Joel reddit today, there were two great articles who's poignancy was extra strong by their being juxtaposed next to one another.

First, at The Micro Business Experiment, a great post about how the author got a ton of negative response at a conference where he dared develop a web application that used a flat file for strorage instead of a database. Horror of horrors! "THE PROBLEM IS THAT YOU DIDN'T USE A DATABASE AND BECAUSE YOU DIDN'T YOU MADE SOMETHING TERRIBLE!"

With that post fresh in mind, I came across a second post, this time on Hacknot — "Invasion Of The Dynamic Language Weenies". In that post, the author takes a serious look at a trend of using dynamic languages, which is quickly becoming as much of a sacred cow as "Thou shalt use a database". He also pokes fun at the blind supporters of Thy Holiest Dynamic Language: Ruby.

While I'm still squarely riding the Dynamic Language train, the two articles together have forced me to reflect on how much of the assumptions I bring to software development are based on dogma rather than cold hard obvserved fact. I'd suggest all developers give thought to the same.

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