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Where art thou, pariah?

The thread on Table driven programming brought up (in a kind of fur ball way), the following, but it was too diversionary for even me to put in that thread.

Does this mean RPG2 jobs are coming back?

I guess not.

For some reason, RPG programmers were considered the lowest scale in the 'profession', subsequently followed by COBOL programmers, who may have also been RPG programmers, they tended to live in the same kinds of buildings.

I wonder which is the pariah these days?
php coders?
VB?  (Still?)
Crystal Report writers?

Simon Lucy
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

HTML and javascripters. Perhaps with Flash authors.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

"HTML programmers"

Andrew Hurst
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Dos batch file writers.....TSR Developers...Microsoft BOB plugin development experts....Microsoft OS crash prevention engineer  (ducks)

Code Monkey
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

I am two out of three from the original post, and I feel unworthy compared to, say, C/C++, Java or Perl talent.


Tuesday, March 2, 2004

On a scale of who is the pariah in the computer geekdom.  I had always considered VB 'programmers' to be the lowest of the low.  I considered it scripting more than anything else, this coupled with the fact that most of the VB programmers that I have come across picked it up from 'teach yourself VB in 21 days/12 hours' etc. and this showed in their code quality.

After all, I took me a 3 years of university and many many more years of comercial experience before I could even consider myself half-way decent at coding. 

but.... (age does this to you)

When you have worked for a number of companies and seen what goes on, everybody has their skills and every language has its place.  I have seen people whip something up in VB that would have taken me  a month of sundays to do (in any of the languages that I know). (excuse the exageration)

HTML 'coders' - once again, I always considered them scripters, after all, it is a markup language, NOT a programming language.  But now, most HTML 'coders' must understand CSS, DHTML, Javascript, along with html optimisation, browser cross-compatability.

Everybody has their niche, and sometimes you just don't need an n-tier EJB/JSP/XML/XSLT/SQL/XHTML/<INSERT BUZZWORD COMPLIANT WORD HERE> kind of solution which takes years to develop, when all you are looking for is a simple batch script that echoes 'Hello World'.

In a nutshell, in the course of your career you are likely to come across many different languages - Java, PHP, ASP, HTML, Python, Perl, Assembler (yes, people still use this), C, C++, Javascript.  Having a toolbox of languages at your disposal makes you a better coder and stops you from falling into the mindset of:

'When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail'

Gee, I wish I knew a bit of VB now

my $US 0.014 (approx $AUD 0.02 :-)

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

I have a BSEE. When I moved from hardware development into software (first CAD, then embedded) in the mid 1980s, my EE "friends" uniformly looked down upon software as "easy", as "slumming", as "doing something that almost anyone could do". I moved into software because I tend toward A.D.D. and hardware design cycles seemed mind numbingly looooong.

I did find that design EEs generally seemed much more "professional" and staid than did software developers, who had a "pull it out of your ass" mentality. Back then I tried to distinguish myself in my work by being one of the rare SW types who could actually read and write specifications and interact at a reasonably professional level with others.

Since then, the "prestige" curves of each of these fields have crossed. Hardware development has been marginalized by offshoring of manufacturing, while software briefly became the "glamor" career field of the mid 1990s.

Today, it feels like building anything of value or quality has become "slumming". The only professional prestige is in ownership, sales, or using legal process to take something away from someone else.

Bored Bystander
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

The inclusion of VB in these types of lists always strikes me as resulting from a lack of familiarity with Windows programming.

Good VB programming requires expert knowledge of how Windows works, at the system level. It also requires expert C++ capabilities (in this sense, C++ is a support skill to VB capability.)

There are others - C++ engineers - who use VB as a support skill for their work, such as building edit tools or frontends when required.

Show me a good VB programmer, and I will show you someone who can do anything in Windows, including C++.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

"Show me a good VB programmer, and I will show you someone who can do anything in Windows, including C++. "

So if they can do anything in Windows, including C++, then wouldn't it more fair to refer to them as a good C++ programmer?

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Years ago I worked with an incredibly adversarial jerk who was an ex-machinist turned VB developer (first at the DIY hobby level, then somehow talked himself into a paying programming job.) The guy would get in ranting arguments with the rest of us in the office over the merits of VB. He would defensively exhort us that "you can do anything in VB" - Okayyy... operating systems, Dave? So, how about real time controls. Or embedded software. .. if you stated too many of these exceptions he would move toward you like he was going to get into a fistfight. The owner of this company *loved* this guy. Dave's claim to fame was driving home with an open six pack in the car seat next to him. Basically, think of the worst of blue collar working class hero ass kicking attitude combined with arrogance borne of cluelessness.

Last I heard Dave talked himself into a job with Deloitte and Touche. Really.

Not that VB is bad, or anything. I've worked around a lot of C/C++ developers who don't bath regularly...

Bored Bystander
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Pariah?  Well, I'm an ASP monkey with no ASP.NET experience.  According to the job ads, I'm the pariah :)

Which is a shame, because I could really go for getting out of my bizzare cubicle-in-an-office.

Mediocre ASP Monkey
Tuesday, March 2, 2004

> So if they can do anything in Windows, including C++, then wouldn't it more fair to refer to them as a good C++ programmer?

It really depends on the task.

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

> Not that VB is bad, or anything

Some of my best friends are VB programmers.

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

I'm an Html coder as well, 8 years ago I did "demos" in asm on X86, 12 years ago in C64

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

>> Not that VB is bad, or anything
>Some of my best friends are VB programmers.

VB is a nice place to visit but I wouldn't want to code there.

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

TSR as in terminate and stay resident?
Wednesday, March 3, 2004

21st century pariah are all those J2EE architects discussing "patterns", "layers", "frameworks" and "domains" and NEVER GETTING THINGS DONE. I'm sooo bored with this web app fad... full of "experts" who make applications WORSE than the 70s terminal form-filling ones.

Bring back my old PowerBuilder develeopers.

I need people to deliver software.

your address is never revealed
Thursday, March 4, 2004

"All your PowerBuilder developers are belong to us"

Thursday, March 4, 2004

Now, that was an insightfull comment. I've been dwelling in the J2EE world and I must say, it sucks the big one. It's complex and it doesn't achieve a thing.

Thursday, March 4, 2004

I would second J2EE wankers.

Friday, March 5, 2004

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