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I've Had Enough

I've had enough of C#. I've had enough of using parentheses for every
'if' statement. I've had enough of having to mix assignment of return
value of methods with flow control, making writing code that's both
readable and consistent, impossible.

C# is hindered by its predecessors and the Microsoft marketing
department. If Anders had his way, this language would be a one where
readable code isn't a near impossibility for non-trivial code; but no,
Microsoft marketing and C++/Java got in his way. The evidence is
blatently apparent in the language.

Microsoft, the company where money comes before technology, has struck
again. The repercussions affect us all.
Nov 16 '05
101 4018
"Dave" <no************ ****@wi.rr.com> wrote in
news:uO******** ******@TK2MSFTN GP11.phx.gbl:
<snip>
Odd. I'd prefer people with .NET experience. You see, It's better
to know how .NET works, than to know how win32 works, as .NET does a
lot for you and sometimes differently than in win32 (i.e.: there is no
messageing architecture to post messages between threads, threads don't
have their own messagepump etc.

I have to disagree. I find it important to understand not only the tool
that is in your hand, but where it came from and the design choices that
were made in building it (i.e. the limitations and why they exist).


if you require that information, OR the documentation is not up to
par OR the API is not up to par.
It may be that you can do 95% or more of your work without needing to
know what lies below the surface, but the small percentage that is left
can be the difference between relying on voodoo programming and being
able to design a good solution or fix a difficult problem. You can be a
good .net programmer without a win32 background, but it's a lot tougher
then for someone with a good win32 background.
I fail to see that. I mean: does it help you if you understand how
Win32's messaging works? It's an asynchronous architecture. .NET is not
(unless you use asynchronous routines). It's about concepts: what's a
thread, what's MTA, what's STA, how do threads communicate, what's the
difference between a thread and a process in windows terms (because on
Unix it's different). What's thread local storage etc. etc. If you
understand these concepts, you can pick up the .NET documentation and
check for implementations of these concepts. After that, use the
implementations on .NET. I don't see why it is important to understand how
it works below the surface. Ok, it's nice to know from a geeky point of
view, but for the rest I don't think it's important.

I think the reasoning behind your point is that in win32 you were
forced to understand the concepts first, because it is a big giant api and
no namespaces/classes which group the functionality (ok, dll's perhaps,
but you start with the platform SDK, 1 big api doc). In .NET it is easy to
run into a Thread class, oh what can it do? Oh that's nice, let's try...
*poof*. However if people understand the concepts, I don't think you need
to understand what win32 does below the surface.
Programmers certainly need experience in .net, but if that's all they
have there will be some problems that are just plain mysterious (and
perhaps unsolvable) to them. Part of that is because the .net platform
is still immature and you can't go very far before it p/invokes back to
a win32 API or COM object. I think you'll find that a number of the
limitations/restrictions of the .net platform and the BCL are directly
derived (even when it's not obvious) from the platform.


true, however the knowledge of these limitations is also learned
from using .NET: 'it can't do this'. Why it can't do this is not
important, because you can't change it anyway :)

For one area I agree with you: COM+ / ServicedCompone nt.

FB

--
Get LLBLGen Pro, the new O/R mapper for .NET: http://www.llblgen.com
My .NET Blog: http://weblogs.asp.net/fbouma
Microsoft C# MVP
Nov 16 '05 #101
> >
I have to disagree. I find it important to understand not only the tool
that is in your hand, but where it came from and the design choices that
were made in building it (i.e. the limitations and why they exist).
if you require that information, OR the documentation is not up to
par OR the API is not up to par.


The documentation is good enough for most cases but there are many times
when it isn't. This was especially true in the early days of .net - it's
gotten a lot better.
I fail to see that. I mean: does it help you if you understand how
Win32's messaging works? It's an asynchronous architecture. .NET is not
(unless you use asynchronous routines). It's about concepts: what's a
thread, what's MTA, what's STA, how do threads communicate, what's the
difference between a thread and a process in windows terms (because on
Unix it's different). What's thread local storage etc. etc. If you
understand these concepts, you can pick up the .NET documentation and
check for implementations of these concepts. After that, use the
implementations on .NET. I don't see why it is important to understand how
it works below the surface. Ok, it's nice to know from a geeky point of
view, but for the rest I don't think it's important.

Some of its pure geek curiousity, but often it makes a practical difference.
For one, there's a lot of win32-isms in the System.Forms classes. There is
some behavior that can only be explained by knowing that behind the scenes a
bit of functionality was implemented by posting a message to a hidden
window.
I think the reasoning behind your point is that in win32 you were
forced to understand the concepts first, because it is a big giant api and
no namespaces/classes which group the functionality (ok, dll's perhaps,
but you start with the platform SDK, 1 big api doc).
Agreed. But I don't think .NET is all that different. I regard .NET as an
operating system, and to write non-trivial, effective code you have to
understand a lot. Sure, you can write a .NET HelloWorld in a flash, but I
can do that just as fast in MFC. You can't get far before you hit a wall
that you can't get beyond until you understand lots of other concepts.
In .NET it is easy to
run into a Thread class, oh what can it do? Oh that's nice, let's try...
*poof*. However if people understand the concepts, I don't think you need
to understand what win32 does below the surface.

Threads are interesting. You can get a lot done without knowing much about
win32, but even here you cannot get far or do a lot without needing to
understand what lies below the surface. Here's one example....why are .net
mutexes visible across processes on the same machine but .net events are
not? Another is that a thread must be in a runnable state before certain
operations will take affect (a ThreadAbort wont actually be delivered until
the thread is running).

Another aspect of threading that is directly related to win32 is the entire
topic of exception handling. This is built directly on top of the SEH
mechanism of win32, and if you want to understand why things happen as they
do you must understand win32 SEH. From what I've read of the exception
portion of the ECMA spec, it was written around some win32 assumptions.

In the original ROTOR sources, because the exception handling was built on
top of a UNIX model the actual delivery of some exception semantics is
subtly different.
Programmers certainly need experience in .net, but if that's all they
have there will be some problems that are just plain mysterious (and
perhaps unsolvable) to them. Part of that is because the .net platform
is still immature and you can't go very far before it p/invokes back to
a win32 API or COM object. I think you'll find that a number of the
limitations/restrictions of the .net platform and the BCL are directly
derived (even when it's not obvious) from the platform.


true, however the knowledge of these limitations is also learned
from using .NET: 'it can't do this'. Why it can't do this is not
important, because you can't change it anyway :)


Hmmm. I agree in part. Quite often what I've found is that a rule is stated
as "Always do this" or "Never do that" but given sufficient understanding of
where those rules come from they should really be stated as "Almost always
do this" or "Almost never do that". It is knowing when it is allowable to
deviate, or when your circumstances are sufficiently different that you can
"do that" that makes all the difference. This can only come from a deep
understanding of the platform.

For one area I agree with you: COM+ / ServicedCompone nt.


I have the happy pleasure of never working with those :-) So I've skipped
over many of the COM problems (apartment models are just nuts).

Nov 16 '05 #102

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