restrictiveness depends on the view point

Posted Sun, Jan 9 2005 12:30 by bill

Rocky talks about higher level languages and frameworks restricting choice.  That really is a view from inside, one that says you can't go outside.  But from my view point, higher level languages ADD to the choices you have... their whole basis is they provide another way, ideally a simpler way to achieve the goal.

So it's really a question of where you view things from.  For example, let's say you look out a window in a building.  Usually that view is somewhat restricted, and the view is actually better if you step outside, at least for ground level buildings.  But once you start getting to higher levels the view from inside, although restricted still, is often better as it gives you an advantaged view point.  There will be those who prefer to climb the mountain rather than take the elevator to the top floor, and although sometimes the view from the mountain may be spectacular, I still think much of the euphoric sense one gets from the mountain summit is from the sense of achieving, of climbing that mountain, be it hours or days to do it.

Higher level languages are not the mountains. Their goal is to take you to the top level view point as quickly as possible.  It's not the climb that is important there, it's the view.  And "great" higher level languages give you the observation deck, quickly giving you amazing panoramic views, helping free you from the navigational issues of trying to climb the mountain and allowing you to, from your vantage point, choose the right path to take.  In fact, I'd argue that it's the high level languages that have brought with them those concepts of frameworks as each tries to provide developers with even better views.

Are higher level languages really restrictive or do they actually provide more choice ?