October 19, 2005

Conference Reports

lj-mood: awake

I spent the last week or so at the Ruby Conference and OOPSLA Conference in San Diego. The Ruby conference had a more grass-roots feel and only one lecture track. Overall it was quite interesting, especially the Rails stuff and the ad-hoc domain specific language stuff. It was also good to see that work was progressing on a byte code compiler for the language, although it's not rocket science and should have been done long ago. I dunno why nobody has bothered yet. (A speaker at OOPSLA pointed out that it's the slowest dynamic language, with a naive implementation, yet people still find it valuable.)

OOPSLA was much more academic. I came away with the vague feeling that it people were a little stuck on the OO stuff and should move on, but there were also a few talks to that effect, so maybe people already know this. The workshop I attended on domain specific modeling was a good experience, although a solid day of academic stuff can be wearying. Sussman's talk and Dave Thomas' talk were both good, too. I think Java Frameworks and over-enginering of tools and libraries has sucked some of the joy out of coding, hopefully we find our way back soon. I think I should skim SICP again sometime soon.

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