W3Schools Anti-Compilism



  • Anti-Compilism = discriminating against compiled code. A term I have made up to fit the W3Schools' attitude towards executable code in some areas. See i.e. here:

    http://www.w3schools.com/ngws/ngws_standards.asp
    http://www.w3schools.com/appml/web_applications.asp
    http://www.w3schools.com/appml/web_services.asp

    The second link contains some interesting proposals: "Applications will not be executables" and "Applications will be web services", along with "Services will be defined in XML" and "Services should not be purpose built". I shuddered... XSLT is unmaintainable, undebuggable and unwieldy enough. And what does "services should not be purpose built" mean? What alternative there is? I understand that the tendency right now is to first develop an elephantine framework for everything there is under the sun and then write a few dozens of lines of code in some JIT-ted or script language to utilize 1% of capabilities of this framework. But I doubt that this approach will eventually kill off every other way of making things work. I am surprised that W3Schools support .NET, because cross-platform capabilities of this framework are a myth. And this looks like blatant advertising (either that, or an extremely fascist atitude towards software pluralism):

    "Our best suggestion is to use a
    standard Internet server like Internet Information Services (IIS), with a standard
    request-handler like Active Server Pages (ASP), and a standard database
    connector like Active Data Objects (ADO)"

    I only hope that they don't express the official views of W3C, because otherwise I would rather grow carrots than do anything web-related.



  • W3Schools is not W3C related in anything but the technologies they describe, methinks. They're handy as a quick reference, but have their own share of WTFs.

    The DailyWTF WTF is that there's now some JavaScript auto-complete nonsense in the tag input box that won't let me type W3Schools properly unless I do it very quickly. It expands the W to 'Web' if you're not fast enough about it.

    Anyway. Very enterprisey.



  • That's some light in the dark. Anyway, they don't seem to realize that using XML for EVERYTHING may be conceptually tempting, but it's not very practical. Using XML to add some semantics to data is OK, using it to manifest a search or a service is great, but using it to define a document transformation (as in XSLT) is a bit too much. I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    I also don't see how the "not purpose-built" services should look like. Should they be composed of a bunch of XML (what else) files containing some Do-What-I-Mean, interpreted by a vast server-side framework that foresees every kind of program you may ever come up with an idea to write?



  • @Tweenk said:

    That's some light in the dark. Anyway, they don't seem to realize that using XML for EVERYTHING may be conceptually tempting, but it's not very practical. Using XML to add some semantics to data is OK, using it to manifest a search or a service is great, but using it to define a document transformation (as in XSLT) is a bit too much. I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.


    XML as a programming language would be a lot like Lisp, only with tags instead of parentheses. :)

    Really, in some ways, XSLT is very much like that programming language already. It's functional in nature, which really upsets some people who are more used to an imperative programming style. Assign variables? Tsk tsk tsk. You have much to learn, young hobbit. :)

    My very first programming job (in high school) involved XSLT. (I had a really nice first-programming-job, really. :D) It is a little bit out there, and while it's certainly not the answer to everything, it's really relatively nice at what it's intended to do: transform one form of XML into another.



  • @Tweenk said:

    "Services should not be purpose built"

    Evidently it doesn't matter what a web service does, as long as it's a web service!

    Like most of the Flash and Java stuff you see on web sites... there so the developer can say "look, I can do Flash/Java!", all the while unwittingly exposing his inability to determine whether there's a tangible benefit to his blog having fancy flash buttons (instead of plain but quick navigation links) or a Java-powered color-shifting clock that eats up 80% of his readers' CPU cycles while the page is displayed!

    (yes, I'm joking. A little.)
     



  • @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    Like o:XML?



  • @clevershark said:

    @Tweenk said:

    "Services should not be purpose built"

    Evidently it doesn't matter what a web service does, as long as it's a web service!

    Like most of the Flash and Java stuff you see on web sites... there so the developer can say "look, I can do Flash/Java!", all the while unwittingly exposing his inability to determine whether there's a tangible benefit to his blog having fancy flash buttons (instead of plain but quick navigation links) or a Java-powered color-shifting clock that eats up 80% of his readers' CPU cycles while the page is displayed!

    (yes, I'm joking. A little.)
     


    Java-powered clock? Pfffft. Try SVG-powered.

    (It used to have a smooth-sweep second hand. But that ate up 80% of the CPU while the page was displayed. :)



  • @premchai21 said:

    @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    Like o:XML?

    Forget that translation nonsense. I want XMLisp. 'nuff said.

    -- edit: Ooh, lookie, XMLisp.



  • @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    ColdFusion. :3



  • @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    You mean, like VoiceXML?

    VoiceXML manages to efficiently combine the worst of declarative and imperative programming with all the succinctness that XML lends to any data.  (But at least it's a widely adopted standard in its area.)



  • [QUOTE]Executables, C++ (and Java too) must die[/QUOTE]

    Sweet - I can't wait to see the world's first ever scripted operating system.

     



  • @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    Try [url=http://waterlanguage.org/]Water[/url].



  • @Tweenk said:

    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    No one has pointed out X++ yet?

    http://xplusplus.sourceforge.net/index.htm

    It's awesome. Some C++ types totally swallowed the XML Kool-aid and decided we needed a C++ like language that:

    * can be parsed by any XML parser

    * can be written in an XML editor 

    * can be passed around the wire like any XML document.

    So they set about designing a beast of a language to solve the 3 least alarming problems facing humanity. Then one day they shocked the world by announcing that X++ was too cumbersome to program, so they decided to create shortx. A C++ like alternative to X++ which retains none of the benefits of X++.  But can be translated into an XML document that does.

    Don't get me wrong, I hate XSLT as much as anyone, but to spend countless hours and 6+ years on writing an entirely new language just to avoid writing a C++ to XML script is as WTFy as it gets.

     

     

     

     



  • @Michael Buschbeck said:

    @Tweenk said:
    I can't wait until someone attempts to create a programming language using XML syntax.

    You mean, like VoiceXML?

    VoiceXML manages to efficiently combine the worst of declarative and imperative programming with all the succinctness that XML lends to any data. (But at least it's a widely adopted standard in its area.)

    ohmigod that... is a fair assessment of my first internship, yes. but you left out some bits about, say, actual utility (or the lack thereof). =)



  • Ah, yes, I remember XSLT.  I had a week to write a web page that converted XML into a webpage displaying some fund prices for an insurance company.  I spent that whole week struggling, and by Friday afternoon I realised that it was probably impossible to do what I wanted to do with the version of XML parser that was installed on the web server, so I re-wrote the site in plain ASP code and easily finished it by home time the same day.  I have been working with XSLT for years now, and I still think it sucks and cannot see the value of it.  What's the point of a language that you have to write recursive templates just to do what a for loop can do in any other language... and did you know that in xslt you can't change the value of a variable??

    So,... that's what I think of XSLT... now I've just read up about AppML and W3Schools seems to have a pretty big ego about this one... so I did a google search for good AppML sites to see if one could actually build a site with it and couldn't see any sites written in AppML, but came across this forum instead.  Where are these sites?  Do they exist... also why is it written in ASP?  If you're going to write open source stuff, please use PHP, so that you can stick it on your free server.

    Oh, ... one more thing... I live in good old South Africa, where connecting to the internet costs me about R20 / hour (about $3) and I download at 5kb / sec if I'm lucky, so chances are highly unlikely that I'll want to run my software over an internet connection.  What's wrong with these first world countries that never think of Africa?

    I love complaining :)

    Ajax sounds quite useful... I think I'll use a lot of that in future.

    My predictions for the future:
    - Microsoft is going to do whatever it can to get as much out of everyone as possible, trying to make us believe that we'll die if we don't have the latest version of windows.
    - Africa will be the first to get absolutely fed up and move to linux, and play games on second hand PlayStations thrown away by the Japanese.
    - All future software will be written in cobol
    - The mainframe will become cool again
    - We won't need flying cars, because we have aeroplanes
    - Car manufacturers will sell cars that expire and have to be renewed every year
    - We'll either own a massive company and everything else, or have to rent from and work for those that do
    - Life support systems will run on windows and people will die because windows was just too expensive to renew

    Seriously, I'm actually here at work on a saturday, waiting for the mainframe people to fix a bug in Objectstar (ever heard of this language) that's pretty much brought the biggest company in South Africa to a halt.



  • (Ah, thread necromancy) 

    @soberauer said:


    - We won't need flying cars, because we have aeroplanes

    We don't want flying cars. Ever. The kind of moronic behaviour that we get with regular cars is already quite bad enough. Idiots with cars manage to kill more people every year than Bush. The one thing that we do not want is to let them have more powerful explosions to destroy things with. Just imagine the devastation caused by a three-dimensional pile-up over an urban area.
     



  • "Services should not be purpose built" - so nothing is allowed to be built for a specific purpose?

    Yeah - love to see that sort of code!

    GetCurrentDate() - Too specific!... argh!
     



  • W3Schools wants to do away with anything local, and open things up to be more insecure and allow the internet to become a play into internal applications, Apparently W3Schools has little to no sense of "security of localized applications", as well as W3Schools wants to do away with other clients other than web browsers, Apparently they have tunnelvision and thinks the internet == HTTP only. As well as they don't seem to take into account compiled languages have the benefit of being optimized over scripted languages.

    W3Schools have been tunnelvisiioned to Web 2.0+, they seem to know nothing more at this point.


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