samskivert: Seven Languages in Seven Weeks

11 June 2011

Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve been so disappointed by a book. The premise is excellent: an illustrative comparison of seven programming languages that make substantively different design choices. The execution is abysmal. The author clearly has zero prior experience with any of the languages except Ruby, and has no particular aptitude for understanding programming languages. His “insights” into the differences between the languages are about as sophisticated as “this language has a static type system; I don’t like static type systems.” Here’s another gem: “Functional languages are at a higher-level of abstraction than object-oriented languages.” As if that weren’t enough, he is frequently just plain wrong in the things he says about the languages. Avoid at all costs.

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