Marco Cantu Ably Defends Delphi

Marco Cantu (hi, Marco!) notes my posts on Delphi and makes some very well-taken points, notably:

  • Delphi's "class helpers" are equivalent (or at least similar) to C# 3.0's "extension methods," so Delphi itself could be used as an example of my "trend away from structural explicitness";
  • There's nothing inherent in Delphi preventing it from evolving towards a language that embraces a more flexible structure;
  • What's with this emphasis on C-style syntax, when half of Larry's examples are about Ruby?

The "C-style syntax" thing comes from the simple observation that Java and C# are two languages that have come onto the scene and, more than other languages in the past decade, have clearly "achieved orbit": although it's hard to separate them from their libraries and environments and corporate promotion, I don't believe that millions of programmers were "duped" or "ignorantly stumbled" into learning those languages. I just make the observation that the market has voted several times for languages that use curly brackets and semicolons.

I've speculated that perhaps a language with a C-style syntax and LISP- and Smalltalk- influenced semantics might be The Next Big Thing. In that same post, I also said that another possibility is a "collapse" towards a more simple syntax (I did a fair amount of Lisp programming this Winter and Spring and found myself liking the parentheses). And, just to cover the bases, I also said that C++ showed that a hybrid syntax, even if complex, may be embraced as a "bridge" between two different eras.