Mailing List Archive: 49091 messages
  • Home
  • Script library
  • AltME Archive
  • Mailing list
  • Articles Index
  • Site search


From: ralph:abooks at: 3-Apr-2001 9:12

>To achieve the sort of flawless operation that your site has would require >not just the stability of Rebol but also of some well thought out code. > >If you reflect on the operation of your site over the last nine months, do >have you any thoughts about what makes a stable (or non-stable) Rebol cgi >script? Or indeed any other reflections. > >Thanks, >Brett.
A very good question, Brett, and one that caused me really to think. I use REBOL for lots of stuff. While I've been programming in various languages for over 20 years professionally, I am still more of a writer and publisher than a programmer. We are a small company expanding explosively with far too few people (and I'm the only programmer). I don't have a lot of time to spend "polishing" code. If I need a script, I usually need it by yesterday. So, far too often, my code is nonelegant, even (yes, I admit it) sloppy. But it gets the job done. Now I've never thought about REBOL in this context before, but that kind of usage is a true torture test of any language. My two major tools in the hundreds of websites I maintain and write web applications for are REBOL and PHP. I am equally sloppy (to put it nicer, rushed ) in both languages. On consideration of the results, I find REBOL is more reliable. Let me sum this up by way of an analogy. Back in 1968, I was in the infantry in Vietnam. We carried M-16 rifles, which was then a new tactical weapon and a lot of us troops were complaining it jammed all too often. In fact, several guys in my unit were using captured AK-47s, the Communist assault rifle stamped out of old rice cake tins up in China (or so it looked). But the durn thing was reliable. So this representitive from Colt Arms (a civilian) came out to my outfit in the jungle one day. He gave us this great song and dance about how reliable the M-16 was, yada yada yada. To top it off, he throws an M-16 into a pool of muddy water. Now I'm sure this demo worked flawlessly at all the other places he'd been, but when he pulled the rifle out and attempted to fire it, the sucker essentially embedded its first round in the firing chamber and he couldn't clear the weapon. A bad, bad thing to have happen if you are in the middle of a firefight. Well, American troops being American troops, some smart ass (wasn't me, but could've been) tossed a captured AK-47 into the same muddy pool. Plucked it out, and rock and rolled through a whole magazine of ammo without a glitch. Needless to say, confidence in Colt's baby was not intensified. That's how I perceive the difference between PHP and REBOL (and ASP and ColdFusion, et al). In the middle of a firefight (like I GOTTA get an application up and running TODAY) I reach for REBOL. If I have the leisure to sight the weapon in, assume an approved firing position, and plenty of time to snap off lines of code well, yes, there are targets PHP is better suited for, but this is seldom true in combat or making a small company profitable on a shoestring budget. Usually, I have no time but a desperate need, so (like our rifles in Vietnam that never left our sides day or night) REBOL is the one I sleep with. And like the rifle, it saves my butt from time to time. That's the difference. Of course, it always helps a lot if you know which end dispenses the bullets or code. --Ralph Roberts author REBOL FOR DUMMIES buy it at this email (c)2001 Creativity, Inc. 'cause I WILL use the analogy in a book one of these days<g>