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New It's dead
Accept it. At least for the majority of programmers in this world.

I will not be writing the front end, so my preferences don't count.

The CTO looks to the resumes he gets, and sees 100 VB for every 1 Delphi.
And that is all that counts. Availability trumps all other concerns in project management.

Even if the VB person takes 4 times as long to do the work, if it means we can find 2 of them right away, rather than search for a single Delphi person, it is worth it.

The interactive portion of the system is currently MF CICS 3270 screens. And it is awful. No matter how piss-poor the VB resulting interface it, it can't be worse than this!

Sorry. In more ways than one.
New Those words may come back to haunt you... ;-)
"No matter how piss-poor the VB resulting interface it, it can't be worse than this!"
Regards,

-scott anderson

"Welcome to Rivendell, Mr. Anderson..."
New Re: It's dead
Since it's screeny (CICS) why not convert it to curses or the like? Or even some direct webform idiom like Acrobat Forms?
-drl
New Ahhh...ahhhh....ahhh.....aychoochtml
New We discussed both
HTML forms SUCK for data entry. You can kludge a lot with Javasacript, but it is never enough. Scrolling grids with embedded logic is just too damn painful. We considered web extensions, such as flash and XUL, but in both cases they are bleeding tech with limited people who know them, and we will not have time for exploration.

We spent about 3 minutes actually thinking we could stop-gap it with a curses (or like toolkit) interface. And then we rethought, since we want to expand this with limited graphical stuff such as scanned images, and again, scrolling grids is a pain in the ass using vanilla character terminals.

So:
#1 - It will need to have a Windows front end that fullfillment employees
can use. These people sometimes speak very little English, have low
literacy, and no computer "skills".
#2 - It needs to perform at least as well as the current CICS system
#3 - It will have to have a SQL back end
#4 - It will have to be modular enough to swap out interfaces, currently
need to talk to MF via FTP JCL, future talk to other systems
#5 - It will need a back processing / batch reporting environment, which
I choose to be Perl / SQL / Linux
New Acrobat forms = javascript
..with a big API for validating data etc.

It's something that should get a try in a real context.
-drl
New That would indicate (to the savvy manager, at least)...
That the ratio of quality developers to noise is about 1:100.



(Now, we all know what the chances of this guy being a savvy manager is, don't we?

.
.
.

It'd be about 100:1.)
jb4
shrub\ufffdbish (Am., from shrub + rubbish, after the derisive name for America's 43 president; 2003) n. 1. a form of nonsensical political doubletalk wherein the speaker attempts to defend the indefensible by lying, obfuscation, or otherwise misstating the facts; GIBBERISH. 2. any of a collection of utterances from America's putative 43rd president. cf. BULLSHIT

New Different levels of noise
We have several people currently who are Cold Fusion programmers. CF is an awful environment, but they can make it since and dance. But I've seen what they do to data, which means they would not be permitted to EVER insert or modify data without going through rules based wrappers that I write.

So they are 100% idiots when it comes to trusting them with data, while they are also 100% capable of creating a user interface that is usable.

Now, we will NOT be using CF (or any other web based environment) for this project. But the attitude toward what types of programmers are capable of what types of tasks stays the same.

User interfaces written by so-so programmers are almost all hardcode. Field names, placement, error checking, etc. Written by good programmers they are table driven, with a mangement interface created to modify the metadata. I consider a hardcode solution acceptable for this system.

Right now, it is SO hardcoded on the MF, in COBOL, that new users are added to the program and it is recompiled before they have access. Really!!!! The people who wrote this system are dumber than a bag of hammers, and it has worked fine for the last 10 years. It just does not give the most recent required report, which means time to do it again. Too many bags on the side already.
New The glimpses you provide into corporate decision making
give me the creeps.

The CTO looks to the resumes he gets, and sees 100 VB for every 1 Delphi.
And that is all that counts. Availability trumps all other concerns in project management.

Even if the VB person takes 4 times as long to do the work, if it means we can find 2 of them right away, rather than search for a single Delphi person, it is worth it.


Is it? I know that's the conventional wisdom but in my experience, the conventional wisdom is typically wrong.

Do you routinely pay twice as much for everything and always grab the thing right by the cash register because its easy to find?

I'd say that makes your CTO a piss poor consumer.

Plenty of companies succeed and excel by staying off the well worn path and shopping carefully for their talent and technologies.

You want to make it work on windows (and linux) with a UI? Get thee to cincom and download VW. Hire a couple Smalltalkers. They're around although largely underground doing Java and hating it. Precision Systems in CA can find you all the people you need.



That was lovely cheese.

     --Wallace, The Wrong Trousers
New Re: The glimpses you provide into corporate decision making
He's just being honest about how it works in the big world. But you know that.
-drl
New I don't think it has to work that way
and I do believe I could do a better job than his CTO.

Yes I know it works that way now. But I don't think its the best way to work.




That was lovely cheese.

     --Wallace, The Wrong Trousers
New Huh?
Programmer, analyst, CTO, what the hell, they are all the same, right?
New Its a lot easier to teach a programmer business than
teach a business guy how to program.

Don'tcha think?

I've run dev shops and been responsible for P/L *and* architecture at a variety of companies. I'm usually the fucking BRIDGE between the suits and T-shirts.

Is he the chief TECHNOLOGY officer or the CYA officer?

I'm not jumping on you personally, but I'm sick of the "conventional" stupidity.

You can do better.






That was lovely cheese.

     --Wallace, The Wrong Trousers
New "Conventional" is there for a reason
And it's not CYA. It's corporate survival. And not
survival of the employee, but survival of the company.
Or in the case, the division.

You may have experience with a variety of situations,
on both side of the aisle, but you are a gambler. You
have been consulting for a long time, jumping from job
to job, and you don't mind failure. You'll just pick
up and move on. You are good at it.

I mind failure. I mind people losing their jobs when
I screw up. I mind throwing away money on things that
are unknowns. I have a house and kids. I'm not going
anywhere. So I'm going to minimize the possibility
for failure, and I'm going to solve the problems given
to me in the most straightforward conservative fashion
possible.

Sorry if that doesn't fit in with your picture of how it
could be better because I won't take a chance on your
pet language.
New I object to your characterization
of me as reckless.

You may have experience with a variety of situations,
on both side of the aisle, but you are a gambler. You
have been consulting for a long time, jumping from job
to job, and you don't mind failure. You'll just pick
up and move on. You are good at it.


You ought to read my resume some time. I've been a full time employee whenever possible - chief technolgy architects at more than a couple companies (CTO right hand man - should have been CTO but I got there second) and I've never fucked an employer and moved on. In fact, some of my [link|http://translations.com/products/GMS_Suite.html|work] has outlasted the [link|http://www.etranslate.com/|company] that sponsored it. All my companies have failed due to poor management at the C level - one step beyond my control.

I mind failure. I mind people losing their jobs when
I screw up. I mind throwing away money on things that
are unknowns.


So do I. So much so that I've never failed. Because if I don't know something I bloody well go find out instead of just following the latest recommendation of CTO magazine and listening to my MS sales rep.

I have a house and kids.


I have that and I'll raise you a yacht. Doesn't mean I still don't have to move every 18 months because of hopeless management fucking up the company and worthless venture capitalists.

Sorry if that doesn't fit in with your picture of how it
could be better because I won't take a chance on your
pet language.


No, but you'll take a chance on an open source rip off of Bill's new wonder hack won't cha?



That was lovely cheese.

     --Wallace, The Wrong Trousers
New No, but you'll take a chance on an
> open source rip off of Bill's new wonder hack won't cha?

Um.

No.

Read my response on the bottom. If I was going to use .Net,
I'd would have liked to also explore Mono, but more for
education and play than any thought of really deploying
it.

But I dropped .Net from consideration after going through a
tutorial on it tonight. Not applicable to the project.

Sorry about the characterization. I've never seen your
resume, I only know what I've read in here over the years.

I've only had 3 primary jobs in the last 20 years, along with
consulting on the side. I've had a variety of offers but
I took the safe road. Maybe I lost out on the big bucks.
Or maybe I've saved myself from drowning in tailspinning
dot com failure.

Who said anything about CTO magazine or MS sales rep? The
CTO didn't say use .Net, he said make it work on Windows
using technology that we have a good chance of hiring
people to support it. Everything else is me.

New If I were you
and had available expertise in VB and were considering getting this done in VB, and considered that it might be a win to have the app run on more than just Windows, I'd at least spend a little time evaluating RealBasic.

[link|http://www.realbasic.com|http://www.realbasic.com]

Because good management AFAK is about preserving options. VB is MS only for sure. RB is cross platform and if you're determined to work with troglodytes (lets face it, people who specialize in basic these days* are hardly your industry elites), you might at least try to get the most bang for your buck.



*BTW, the first proof of concept Smalltalk VM was actually written in Basic (Basic was popular in the late 70's after all).



That was lovely cheese.

     --Wallace, The Wrong Trousers
New Done
Did a quick review of the site, accepted
it is applicable, forwarded off the to CTO.

He has looked into it in the past, it seems
my RPG-III / VB Programming brother turned
him on to it!

Is now in consideration for this project.

Thanks for reminding me about it.
New Sorry
Reality intrudes again and again.

> Do you routinely pay twice as much for
> everything and always grab the thing
> right by the cash register because its
> easy to find?

If I'm starving, and I'm about to pass out,
and I know I'll earn $1,000 tomorrow if
I eat in the next 10 minutes, I will
HAPPILY pay $200 for some fast food crap
RIGHT NOW, than start exploring / learning /
researching / deciding on a possible
path that would cost me $100 some time
in the HOPEFULLY near future. Sure, it
MAY be healthier, and allow me to live
longer, but if I don't get it soon enough
I'll pass out and die.

Customer wants reports. Reports CANNOT be
provided by current system. System must
be rewritten to allow for the reports while
maintaining the same abilities. Customer
wants reports NOW. Every day longer makes
for an unhappy customer. Enough days go
by and the customer might make a decision
to use another vendor.

I have no experience in Smalltalk, and I
do not know of anyone I work with who does.
I am not qualified to judge whether or
not there would be a huge price/performance
benefit, nor can I judge a person's ability in
the environment. There MUST be a huge win
to go to any non-standard environment.

I can make that claim for Perl vs other languages
I know, but that claim only holds true for a
select minority of programmers. How will I
know if the Smalltalkers are just mediocre and
bullshitting me?

I have about 5 people in my company that
have a variety of Windows experience that
I trust. I hired them as Perl / Unix people,
but they also have the Windows C++ and Basic
experience. They are not available to draw
on for a new project, but if all hell breaks
loose in the middle of one, I can negotiate some
time from some of them to help out.

Hell, give me a few days in deep learn mode and
I know even I can be productive/dangerous in VB.
It's been years since I took it off my resume, but
I know for THIS particular project, it won't be that
complex.

We are a print and fullfillment company. We do some
data warehousing. We are not a software shop.

> I'd say that makes your CTO a piss poor consumer.

> Plenty of companies succeed and excel by staying off
> the well worn path and shopping carefully for their
> talent and technologies.

No, I'd say he knows what he wants, can envision the
steps to get there, and knows how dangerous the woods
can be.
     Mono? - (broomberg) - (33)
         Why not Delphi in stead? (And Kylix in stead of Mono.) -NT - (CRConrad) - (19)
             It's dead - (broomberg) - (18)
                 Those words may come back to haunt you... ;-) - (admin)
                 Re: It's dead - (deSitter) - (3)
                     Ahhh...ahhhh....ahhh.....aychoochtml -NT - (FuManChu)
                     We discussed both - (broomberg) - (1)
                         Acrobat forms = javascript - (deSitter)
                 That would indicate (to the savvy manager, at least)... - (jb4) - (1)
                     Different levels of noise - (broomberg)
                 The glimpses you provide into corporate decision making - (tuberculosis) - (10)
                     Re: The glimpses you provide into corporate decision making - (deSitter) - (8)
                         I don't think it has to work that way - (tuberculosis) - (7)
                             Huh? - (broomberg) - (6)
                                 Its a lot easier to teach a programmer business than - (tuberculosis) - (5)
                                     "Conventional" is there for a reason - (broomberg) - (4)
                                         I object to your characterization - (tuberculosis) - (3)
                                             No, but you'll take a chance on an - (broomberg) - (2)
                                                 If I were you - (tuberculosis) - (1)
                                                     Done - (broomberg)
                     Sorry - (broomberg)
         Mono will be more... - (folkert) - (6)
             To paraphrase: "Mono. a better .NET than .NET" - (jb4) - (5)
                 You like? Yeah, wow, great - just look how that helped OS/2! -NT - (CRConrad) - (4)
                     What?!? "A better OS2 than OS2"? - (jb4) - (3)
                         Windows 3.1 -> WinOS2 -NT - (deSitter) - (1)
                             OT: Remember MS Sql Server running on OS/2? - (mmoffitt)
                         No, you nitwit, the other way around! - (CRConrad)
         snoball for a front end? - (boxley)
         Re: Mono? - (altmann)
         I'm confused. - (Another Scott) - (3)
             Very observant - (broomberg) - (2)
                 Suggestion - (ben_tilly) - (1)
                     Hmm. - (broomberg)

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