Re: [wmii] 10kloc project, wmii maintainer change

From: Geoffrey Alan Washburn <>
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2006 13:03:47 -0400

Anselm R. Garbe wrote:
> Why is there no hope for writing a compiler in less than ten
> thousand lines? Maybe because modern compilers need to provide so
> much optimization features, that the complex software they
> have to compile don't performs poorly?

    No it's because modern processors require complex optimizations to
obtain optimal performance. So maybe you should be complaining to
computer architects. Furthermore, have you ever written a interpreter
or compiler? Do you really know what kind of complexity goes into one?
Have you written an operating system kernel?

> Like code optimization in compilers, abstractions solve the
> symptom of complexity, but not the complexity itself.
> Abstractions follow the divide et empera paradigm, which is not
> bad, if the interfaces are kept simple and generic, like the
> pipe-filter paradigm. But too often abstractions leads to more
> complexity, than necessary. See the Web Service desease for
> example. Do I need an XML parser in the future to call atoi()?

    I'm not advocating Web Services as a paragon of abstraction, but
clearly you seem to have not been educated on the concept of irreducible
or Kolmogorov complexity. Some things are just complex. Period.

> I doubt that I can do fewer data abstraction with C than withany other language. What can't I do with C, but with another language?

    And this is exactly because you are ignorant. A common problem with
open source software developers. Try educating yourself; very little
software should be written in C.

> And I doubt that the SLOC metric is really
> language-dependend, there is not much difference in 10 thousand
> lines of bare Java code compared to 10 thousand lines of bare C
> code (maybe the C code provides more functionality, because not
> every global var is accessed with a useless getter and setter
> method...).
    Again, this shows an considerable lack of understanding about
different models of computation. Some problems are significantly easier
when provided with the correct paradigm. Furthermore, different models
of computation allow for much better simpler/compilers. My guess is
that you've never actually tried programming in anything except for
poorly designed effectful-imperative languages.
> I don't think so. Do you really believe you can understand
> software systems consisting of more than 10kloc? We consider
> adding a 'Hall of Ueberprogrammers'...

    So you're telling me that gcc, ghc, Linux, *BSD, etc. are complete

    Anyway, your response was pretty much what I expected, so I'm not
going to bother debating further. Most open source developers are
completely clueless when it comes to choosing the right tools for the job.

[Geoff Washburn||]
Received on Wed Jul 19 2006 - 19:03:54 UTC

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