Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Programming Language and Development Environments

Many developers find one programming language and one development environment they like and stick with it. Some switch once in a while. Others, like me, use a lot of different ones daily. Everyone has different reasons for this, many just like to dabble. Discussing programming languages can be like discussing politics, but I'm going to do it anyway.

I learned Commodore BASIC as my first programming language in 4th grade. It was awesome once my school got a cassette tape so I could save my programs! Years later I learned C/C++ and assembly, and from there I can't recall the order but Pascal must've been next. Java, C#, Fortran, Prologue at some point, Perl, Python, PHP, Javascript, Lua, Bash, Swift, etc etc. Now on a daily basis I use Visual Studio, Xcode and NetBeans, (I prefer IntelliJ) and various other things that aren't really worth mentioning like Eclipse, Delphi, C++ Builder, JDeveloper and Xamarin Studio.

Delphi and C++Builder used to be my favorite, but their market is so small compared to anything else out there I'm sorry to say they are hardly worth mentioning. Visual Studio is by far the best IDE available. Xamarin is actually pretty good and getting better. So is Xcode. Although I wish the debugger were better because I really can't stand gdb.

I really like a strongly typed programming language. When I'm sitting holding an object and I don't know what it is, I guess it doesn't matter but sometimes it really does and I don't like it. I find this problematic with Swift. But swift has been growing on me. Programming languages are pretty much the same. I like Delphi, but C++ is my favorite go to language, C# and Java are both very good. They both have huge amounts of support code out there so you can do just about anything. Microsoft's recent announcement to bring .NET to every platform is really cool. Nobody should write real software with Perl, Python, PHP or Bash (even thought I've seen it done). Javascript is a necessary evil.

So there you have it. My quick thoughts on programming languages and development environments.

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