Bonum Certa Men Certa

[Video] The High Cost of High-Level Tools and High-Level Programming Languages

posted by Roy Schestowitz on May 14, 2024

Video download link | md5sum 8d740fdfb53c8ba275f05646cf0aaceb
High-Level Tools, Not Computer Science
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Preview for High-Level Tools, Not Computer Science

HAVING done a great deal of coding, both low- and high-level stuff, I think I can comment on various languages and frameworks. I've worked with plenty. Nowadays when I need a simple program I write something in Bash because Java and C take longer (also more lines in total) and are cumbersome to deploy across machines, unless they're all the same (no need to compile different sets of binaries or add modules).

With the general news cycles becoming drearier (everything is slowing down because they don't employ reporters!), and the matter becoming more severe each month, a neophile (lover of news) can allocate more time to programming, aside from taking breaks/naps/workout recess. I myself have taken advantage to write more articles per day, whereas others improve existing programs. There's a whole bunch of us working on the site.

"Looking at some RPi [Raspberry Pi] stuff," an associate told me last week, "it seems like they are somehow getting spread too thinly or otherwise ----ing up. One of my scripts stopped working, it is in part due to some crap from the now Microsoft python3 module handling and in part from the crap that RPi is inflicting. Microsoft is making python too complex to run any more, at least if one intends to maintain the system. If you just set it up and never do any updates whether for security or not then it might stay working."

The dreadful situation at Raspberry Pi Foundation was covered here before. They've had somewhat of a Microsoft infestation and they keep promoting Microsoft's proprietary spyware, probably as part of some secret marketing deal. I myself still use a Raspberry Pi device (we also sold one a couple of months ago), but there's no Microsoft in it. I use it for a whole bunch of tasks and it doesn't take much energy (the monitor does).

The Raspberry Pi situation was discussed internally and I explained that I like Bash because there's no "GET READY FOR BASH [version]!! Rewrite your code!!"

I still use many Bash scripts that I wrote when I was a student. That includes my backup scripts that are about 20 years old. They still work!

Then there's Microsoft...

Microsoft loves to "extend" things.

Microsoft loves to break "old" things.

Microsoft profits when people buy new stuff or the "latest version".

"Python has started doing that within version 3," the associate said. "Then there was the 2->3 change which broke everything. PHP was worse though. However, this crap seems to have started when Microsoft turned its attention to Python3."

I said that every PHP "upgrade" kept me up at night, especially because on shared hosting the customer often gets no choice regarding "upgrades". If there's some new version of it installed, then some your "programs" (piles of PHP) will suddenly break. They won't work anymore. So you can rewrite the code (that is not yours) or try to use an older version of PHP - albeit that's just a temporary, short-term strategy. As I explain in the video, we had this issue with WordPress.

The associate recalled: "I was on Debian at work at that time. Several PHP problems in a row broke code. Then there was the matter of having half- or quarter- completed modules. And among those, even an idiot like myself spotted open security holes. So at one point I cut my losses and refactored the whole project in Perl5. There were just so many started-but-not-ready PHP modules that it seemed the norm. My theory was that PHP was adopted for two reasons. One was the *huge* smear campaign run by Microsoft online and via whispers. Another was that many developers 'compromised' by allowing management to force them onto NT (e.g. XP) such that it was a profound PITA to get anything installed and the monolithic nature of PHP meant the administrative fight to get a package installed only had to occur once. Whereas with Perl, it happened every time you needed to add another module to the project. The loss of productivity that Microsoft has cost the world is probably mid to high triple digit trillions, even not counting malware."

More than 20 years ago I learned to work with CPAN, as I had adopted some Perl programs that would be useful for years to come. Having said that, the web of modules would complicate installation and, unlike Bash, the syntax was less comprehensible.

Windows and Microsoft-style teaching remain a barrier to simple programming. Microsoft has made things unnecessarily complex unless one does everything the "Microsoft way". Forget about "WAMP" or "LAMP" with Windows. That would not work well and not be easy to set up, either. "Unless you were on a GNU/Linux or *BSD system," the associate said, "in which case adding Perl modules was trivial."

"But as mentioned, many devs were maneuvered into 'accepting' NT instead of a functional operating system. When I considered whether to use Debian or NT on the desktop at work, the boss and one worker used NT. The boss I could foretell was only going to be around for a few months more. I spoke with the worker using NT, but though he sung the praises of NT he could not hide the fact that he did *all* his work via PuTTY on the Solaris and Linux boxes."

"Truth was that NT could do *far* less than GNU/Linux (i.e. Debian) at the time including e-mail and web browsers, but most of all anything related to either software development or web development. The rest of the almost two dozen were already settled in Debian from the start. So the choice was a no-brainer. Use of W95, W98, and NT at home made sure that I knew the real deal and that Windows was an unviable system for any work-related activities."

22 years ago I wanted to compile a game that I had developed (on GNU/Linux, for GNU/Linux) for Windows XP because many people used Windows in those days. It took hours to compile it and the resultant binary was very inefficient, with a performance about 5 times worse on comparable if not identical hardware. That was in C and compiling it for Windows meant (at least back then) grabbing some Windows machine at the lab, then running Visual Studio.

That experience alone taught me never to bother with Windows, not even to compile anything for it. I made an installer for the game, but as new versions of Windows came out it was no longer "compatible".

So there are two lessons here; first, don't bother with Windows (waste of time) and second, where/if possible, keep programs/games very small/compact, written using universal frameworks that don't change much. My games (heavily but not strictly) used OpenGL, which meant some function calls would become obsolete, at one point deprecated entirely.

Black and White Colobus Monkey at wildlife reserve

From what I can gather (we covered it last week), programming is barely taught anymore; some colleges teach high-level stuff like JavaScript and this results in bad practices, bloat, and latency (e.g. requiring you to fetch megabytes of JavaScript just to render a very simple page). The high cost of such practices manifests itself also in the security sense. Grabbing programs and modules from many arbitrary domains (some of which may be compromised/offline) is deeply atrocious as a paradigm. Some sites or "webapps" do this with fonts, too.

Worse yet, the Mono pushers wanted us to rely on the company that back-doors virtually everything for the NSA. Instead of code monkeys we'd have a bunch of Microsoft drones and "consumers".

Thankfully Mono failed.

Other Recent Techrights' Posts

IRC Proceedings: Saturday, July 13, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, July 13, 2024
Julian Assange’s Brother Gabriel Shipton Explains the Logistics of 'Smuggling' Julian Out of the United Kingdom
a lot of new information and prison stories
[Video] Why Wikileaks Publishing War-Related Documents Was Both Important and Justified
It's important to remember the principle which says privacy is for the powerless, whereas the powerful (like those with the power to kill) deserve not privacy but transparency
[Meme] Attacking the "G" in GNOME (Since 2009) Was a Mistake
Spending 50,000 pounds to sue women of racial minority
Difficult Times in GNOME Foundation
GNOME Foundation is in "crisis management" or "face-saving" or "damage control" mode
 
Gemini Links 14/07/2024: The Stress of 24/7 Notifications and FOSS tools for Sipeed Tang Nano 1K
Links for the day
Windows Already Down to 10% in Lao (It was 96% a Decade and a Half Ago), Vista 11 Adoption Has Stalled
And GNU/Linux is topping a 1-year high in Loa
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Links 13/07/2024: Patent Trolls in UK Court of Appeal, Eric Schmidt Continues so Show Womanising at Google
Links for the day
Links 13/07/2024: Not Quite Dead Yet After All and Unfederated E-mail
Links for the day
Holly Million, GNOME Foundation departure after Albanian whistleblower revelations
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
[Meme] Like They Got Rid of Molly (and Now Holly)
Pay over 100,000 dollars a year for someone without any background in tech (to "lead" a tech project)
Microsoft Windows Falls to Almost 10% in Palestine (It Was Measured at 100% Just 15 Years Ago)
quite a big drop
Guardianship of the Licence is Not Enough (the Case of Systemd and Microsoft)
Whether the GPL gets enforced or not, if people adopt lousy software, that will have negative consequences
Speaking Out and Spreading the Message of GNU
Free Software Foundation (FSF) got 112 new members since 2.5 weeks ago
3.5 Years in Gemini
It's important to speak about and spread the word (about software freedom, BSD, GNU/Linux, patents etc.) in a medium that's strategic and growing
[Meme] Whoever in GNOME Decided to Attack the G (GNU), It Was a Foolish Miscalculation
How could they expect any outcome other than GNOME's own collapse?
Windows Down to Unprecedented Low in Czech Republic, Android Rises to New Record
From 98% in July 2009 (15 years ago) Windows is down to all-time low of 38% and well below Android
GNOME Foundation Lost Nearly a Million Dollars in 2 Years, IBM and GAFAM Won't Bail It Out Anymore
Seems like a suicide mission
Google News Has Become a Big Pile of Garbage
The issue predates chatbots, but these SEO tricks were accelerated somewhat by slop
OpenAI and ChatGPT Could Very Well Collapse and Shut Down Later This Year (Huge Losses, Sagging Usage Levels, and Massive Debt)
we illuminate the suppressed observations that Microsoft-sponsored publishers and cheaply-made slop (LLM spew disguised as "news") try to distract from
Links 13/07/2024: TikTok Interferences, YouTube Throttled in Russia
Links for the day
Kathy Lette on Julian Assange Staying at Her Attic, Why His Release Matters So Much, and Jen Robinson Staying Over Yesterday
They talk a lot about politics, but the segment mentions publishers, including Rushdie
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Friday, July 12, 2024
IRC logs for Friday, July 12, 2024
Microsoft Windows Down to a New Low in Canada (Only a Third)
Very steep decline a decade ago
Links 12/07/2024: EU/China Tensions and Ukraine War Updates
Links for the day
EPO Staff Reps: "Until now, Mr Campinos is still leaving the appellants in the dark about the exact content of the opinion of the Appeals Committee on the EPO salary adjustment procedure."
Campinos chooses to lawyer up rather than listen up
EPO Staff Representatives Say It Has Gotten Very Hard to Get Promoted (Forget About Getting Rewarded for Hard Work)
This has long been a problem
[Meme] That Time EPO Workers Were Panicking Because the Elevators Kept Getting Stuck
Many people forgot that
Occupational Health, Safety and Ergonomics Committee (LOHSEC) at the European Patent Office (EPO)
nobody in EPO management ever gets punished for crimes, no matter how severe
[Video] Julian Assange's Brother Gabriel Shipton on How the Convoy to the Airport Was Arranged, Being at the Beach With Julian Assange After Release (He's Doing Well), and How Taylor Swift Has 'Helped' Julian
At the airport he was greeted by many press crews, but they were not there for him. They were there because of Taylor Swift.
[Meme] Financial Disinformation From Chatbots Controlled by the Manipulator (Rigger)
ChatGPT, the media is starting to say you're all hype...
Microsoft is Actually Quite Worthless, Its Valuation is Based on Lies and Consistently Defrauding Shareholders
Microsoft's future is not what Wall Street "tells" us
Links 12/07/2024: Nations That Already Ban TikTok and Russia's 'Shadow War' Online
Links for the day
Gemini Links 12/07/2024: Changing and the WIPO Lunacy
Links for the day
Let's Encrypt Continues to Collapse in Geminispace and That's Good News for Free Speech (Among Other Things)
due to the way modern Web browsers work, many sites have no option but to use Let's Encrypt or pay for some other CA to issue some worthless-but-glorified bytes
Microsoft Falls Below 20% in Montenegro - Plunging to All-Time Low
sharp drop
[Meme] The Free Speech Absolutist From Apartheid South Africa
What will it take for all sensible people to quit X/Twitter?
The Final Demise of Social Control Media May be Upon Us (It Ought to be Collectively Abandoned for Society's Sake)
If it keeps going down, prospects of a turnaround or rebound are slim
Linux is Displacing Microsoft and Replacing Windows in Germany (Android Surge and New Highs for ChromeOS+GNU/Linux in Germany)
Germany is upgrading to GNU/Linux, not to latest Windows
The Latest NDAA Amendment Can (or Should) Allow the United States to Remove Microsoft Even Faster From Its Infrastructure (Which Routinely Gets Cracked Completely by Russia and China, Thanks to Microsoft)
It's time to move!
Reorganising for Better Efficiency and More Publication (Original Material)
XBox "journalism" these days is mostly slop (chatbot spew disguised as news), so studying this matter isn't easy
Software Freedom is Still the FSF
At the moment the best advocacy group for Software Freedom is the FSF
Links 12/07/2024: XBox in Trouble, Crackdowns in UAE
Links for the day
Gemini Links 12/07/2024: Make Tea Not War, Considering Guix
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Thursday, July 11, 2024
IRC logs for Thursday, July 11, 2024