On Thu, 16 May 2002, Michael Kimsal wrote:
> Miguel Cruz wrote:
>> all the power of DOS batchfiles. Every single thing you want to do - even
>> basic filesystem operations like working with directories and file
>> permissions!!! - requires purchasing expensive and buggy .COM components
>> from nasty little companies with horrible documentation and nonexistent
>> customer service. I consider it an incredibly developer-hostile
>> environment (unless you're in the business of developing developer tools,
>> which seems to be the lynchpin of the ASP ponzi scheme).
> As much as I'm not a fan of ASP (2 or 2.5, not worked with 3 much),
> I'd have to say that you could definitely at least read a directory's
> contents without having to purchase external libraries.  Please don't
> go overboard.

It's been a while, but I remember that it was impossible to create a
functional directory browser with off-the-shelf ASP functionality. The
file component was categorically unwilling to follow mounted shares until
we got some extra add-in. This was after a month of debate in newsgroup
microsoft.public.this.that.the-other-thing, and plenty of experimentation
during which I discovered, reported, and was contacted by MS engineers
about more bugs than I've ever encountered in PHP.

> Wouldn't it be cool if you didn't have to be a C programmer to write PHP
> extensions that you could distribute to others (whether for profit or
> not)?  I certainly think so, but it's currently not possible right now.  
> All those "nasty little companies" you mention are making some money
> because they can program VB, wrap up stuff as DLLs, and sell them.  
> They see a need in the ASP community and address it, while being able to
> make some money too.  What a novel concept!

I don't think it's a bad thing that they see a niche and try to fill it. I 
think it's a bad thing from the web developer's perspective that there are 
so many unfilled niches.

Furthermore, in contrast to the PHP/Open Source world I find the
profiteering got annoying after a while. It was a drag just having to fill
out a P.O. every week to buy another ridiculous little thing that may or
may not be production-quality and had a no-refund policy.

And the fact is, most of those little companies provide wretched
documentation and support, and there is no real onlne user community in
the Windows world to exchange information with. Well, there are lots of
users, but the ratio of crap-to-usefulness in the fora is so high that
finding information is painful at best.

> It's all perspective.  I'm not saying everyone who does PHP is a loser,
> but I have met more than a few losers who happen to work in PHP.  Same
> with every other language.

No doubt. But a development environment that's the centerpiece of every
late-night-TV-commercial "Are you tired of your Burger Hut job? We'll
teach you to be a computer programmer earning $70k/year in only 3
weeks!!!" tech school is bound to have a higher percentage of losers than

>> As for .NET, I thought I just read that Microsoft was pulling everything 
>> in for a rethink because of all the negative reactions it was getting.
> Where the heck did you read that?  Do you know what .NET is?

Slashdot. And no, to be honest.

> There's a lot of interesting concepts in the .NET codebase out there now
> (ASP.NET webforms, for example) as well as other platforms (Java springs
> to mind).  Just because it's "not PHP" shouldn't mean you ignore it or
> worse yet, publicly denigrate it.

Public denigration of what I don't understand is how I strike out at a
callous world that's denied me my just deserts: fame, millions, and a
torrid love affair with Nancy Reagan. Either address the fundamental
injustice here or cut me some slack.


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