It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Software Programmers Are All Doomed…

page: 1
0

log in

join
share:

posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 04:54 PM
link   
According to a programmer / project manager friend of mine, the software industry has doomed itself, and is taking all software programmers with it.

She says that software development tools are all extremely faddish, each generation of new programming languages is slower, more complex and constraining than the last generation, and that the really talented pool of programmers have moved on to other fields of endeavors.

The few talented engineers that stick with it are inevitably going to be disappointed when the next generation of software development methodologies comes out, or the next, or the next… They will leave the field also. The smart ones are leaving the field now – the die-hards are going to be smashed on the rocks.

The result for consumers: software is going to become incredibly expensive and brittle. That goes for all applications and all tools. People are going to be smacked with horrendous obsolescence, the likes of which we have never seen, and it is going to cause widespread suffering as people try to adapt to new and evermore inferior software.

She specifically cites the “.NET” framework, from Microsoft as one of the worst reworks of old ideas she has ever seen. (She says it is just an incredibly obfuscated and mind-numbing rehash of existing technologies.) She also says Microsoft Vista will likely be the last half-good operating system Microsoft ever creates, and it is quickly downhill from here.

The motive: Drive out competition, drive up prices, increase dependence on the software dictators at the top, at the expense of all end users. To do that, they have to sacrifice software programmers and professionals.

#

I don’t know enough to say if she is right, or if this is just your typical rant against change.

Any software programmers out there who can back up or refute her statements?




posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 06:38 PM
link   
I guess a good analogy would be a radio operator from 50 years ago would know the thing inside and out, in theory and practice. And today they just push buttons, and hope it works.

That's where programming has been going. I don't know why, it never makes sense to me. It's pretty frustrating when you could do something in a fraction of the time and for a fraction of the cost and have it run faster, but the industry standard enforces the dumb way.

Corporations can afford to be incredibly inefficient and seems to like it that way.



[edit on 19-1-2008 by eezoov3at]



posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 07:00 PM
link   
Well speaking as a dot net developer I'd have to say she's completely off the mark.

Saying

“.NET” framework, from Microsoft as one of the worst reworks of old ideas she has ever seen. (She says it is just an incredibly obfuscated and mind-numbing rehash of existing technologies.)

Just goes to show that she has doesn't understand the purpose of dot net. I can't understand why she's saying that it's obfuscated, you can reflect in to any of the dot net assemblies and see exactly what is happening. And to say that it's a rehash of existing technologies just again shows she doesn't understand the point of it. Of course it's reusing technologies, it's a framework, that is evolution/progress, building on existing technology.

There will always be a market for hard core coders, if you want to write an incredibly fast program then you can find a assembly programmer out there that can write something significantly faster than a dot net program. Although, a well written dot net application will run faster than the average C++ application. But that's not the point, frameworks like dot net are designed to allow coders to produce stable, coherent programs, quickly. It also allows you to interface with a lot of Microsoft products seamlessly allowing you to write easy distributable easily updatable programs that can be quickly deployed. Saying that, it's not just restricted to Microsoft and windows, MONO is the Linux dot net framework.

If you ask me dot net is one of the best things to happen to software development for a long time especially in regards to Microsoft technology.

Your friend says

"each generation of new programming languages is slower, more complex and constraining than the last generation"

Well i say try and write something in assembler then try and to write something in dot net. You'll soon see how complelty wrong the above sentace is.


Obviously people are always going to have differing opinions but to say that all software developers are doomed just makes no sense.

Each to their own i suppose. But software developers aren't going any where


People earn a very good wage developing dot net applications, and that's going to be the way it is for a long time. Microsoft isn't going any where an neither is dot net.

You say

"I don’t know enough to say if she is right, or if this is just your typical rant against change."

Well I'd say it's a rant against change


[edit on 19-1-2008 by Burgess]



posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 07:59 PM
link   

Originally posted by Burgess
Well speaking as a dot net developer I'd have to say she's completely off the mark.

Good info Burgess.

You have to know my friend -- she's always upset by something -- about half the time she's on mark and the other half she's not. In this case, I suspect NOT. (No offense please, if you stumble onto this MR...
)

#

I did a web search on Monster for dot-net developers and found a ton of positions available, some going for $100 per hour. So I see a demand.

On the other hand, why is someone willing to pay that much for an application programmer? Could it be because they have purposely made the programming system extremely difficult?

Good points, all. Thanks.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 12:54 PM
link   
I will give my friend the last word, clipped from her e-mail message. This is with her permission (or more accurately, at her "specific and emphatic direction", such as it is.)

She is not happy with this thread, as you can see below.



You’re not listening to me. I’m not saying that this is some ordinary technology trend, like tubes to transistors, where you are getting improvement as the technology changes. This is nothing but planned obsolescence of the most dangerous kind. This is really a perilous thing that programmers need to fight against, not just for themselves, but also for consumers.

We have all inherited a monolithic software infrastructure. Our economy now depends on its flawless operation. But the movers and shakers of the software industry, in love with their own ideas, are willfully jeopardizing this infrastructure... just because they can make some easy money.

Something else (Buck)...as for your superficial search of the job market, the reason .NET programmers are paid so much right now is that industry components are trying to kill the Open Source movement. Once that has been beaten to death, see if programmers are paid anywhere near what they are getting now...It is a bubble. It is a monopoly of spirit, where you can’t get anything done without being a “party member”.

It is already too late to change this. We have churned out a whole new generation of... naive programmers that don’t know the status quo. All these new programmers will be in different (and probably lower paid) professions by age forty, as current software paradigms are replaced by something even slower and ickier and more damaging to productivity. All that good experience and good knowledge is going to end up in the trash bin...at the whim of Microsoft, Oracle, and other big software vendors.

People who think this is a joke, or of little consequence, don’t understand fascism. This is pure software fascism. Programmers (as well as...consumers) will be feeling the effect of this soon, and for years after. And I will say this in advance of those dark days -- I told you so!!!!

Okay MR -- there it is. I'm done being your go-between. You can join ATS yourself, if you want to comment further, and I hope you do just that.


Edit: I will make this easy. Just click here to access the ATS join-up page....

[edit on 20-1-2008 by Buck Division]



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 01:08 PM
link   
two words, open source.

as far as the software becoming more complex, as computers become more complex we can run the newer software.

one of the oldest computer problems is "Legacy Devices". The whole John Titor story is based on legacy devices. A legacy device is basically a very old and out-dated piece of hardware and the software associated with it.

For example, I went to a customers location recently, they ran a greenhouse. The software they had ran on an outdated OS and an outdated machine. It worked fine for them for 10+ years.

there is much better and newer software and hardware out there today. of course the code is more complex. lets just say the code is very very wasteful also. lets say the code wastes 2000million clock cycles per second.

In this example, the computer in place was running 300 million cycles per second. you cant even buy a processor today that runs that slow (2.3ghz, 300mhz for the old processor and 2000mhz for the 'wasted cycles' in the example).

in laymans terms there isnt anything you could do to make a new computer run slower than a ten year old pc short of sabatoge.

as far as the poin in the OP about .net framework, yes, it is garbage. as far as software itself becoming extinct, not in the next dozen generations or more.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 01:16 PM
link   
While I haven't done much with DOT Net (not a microsoft fan) I can see where your friend is not entirely wrong as once upon a time web programmers and help desk support personnel were being paid a handsome sum

but that appears to be a thing of the past I for one have gotten away from computer support and well computers in general,

this is a trend like all other trends once upon a time a machinist got paid quite a lot of money and while you can make a decent living being a machinist it is not what it used to be so it appears that like all other professions programmers and computer related jobs in general are not immune to becoming obsolete.. not obsolete in that there is no need just less of a need or there will be a third world country that can do it cheaper like say uh India.

As far as Dotnet goes I don't think it is all it is cracked up to be either but I'll leave that argument to someone else...

Oh yeah and kudos to the entire open source community both end users and programmers I personally like Linux quite a lot I use Ubuntu Server myself on my home server and have set up several servers for people who quite honestly have no use for the cost in hardware and licensing for a Microsoft based solution...install it configure it let it run for as long as you need yep open source is the way to go in the future...

Respectfully
GEO



[edit on 1/20/2008 by geocom]

[edit on 1/20/2008 by geocom]



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 02:04 PM
link   
I see software programmers doomed in the sense its not the evolving development software causing doom, rather the saturated resource to implement software to clients.

I was in the computer field and went to school for a degree. I learned VB6 and liked doing things in object oriented programming. I could not find a job in computers because of hb-1 visa people who were being brought in to fill the widening gap for tech jobs. Some how the field got itself to believe there was a shortage of qualified tech and programmers in the US and importing fresh degree'd hb-1 sources would solve the need.

I don't know who came up with this bright stupid idea but it crushed the market for at home resources by deceptively convincing the tech employment sector they need to find brains from abroad to fill the empty tech pool of knowledge with US based employers.

This was a new angle to make money promoting scare tactics the world was coming to an end if the tech community could not find capable technicians, programmers and engineers.

I programmed in VB6 and decided I could make my own little widgets, give them away as a teaser to further develop a computer gizmo and sell the code and rights to develop further and market. So far I have developed about 10 or so little programs, given them out free and as of now, have not developed anything further because I'm in no hurry. I even coded a new web browser based on the IE frame with added modules. It was a hit when I did my lecture on what I learned from school. As for .net, I see it as MS way to complicate the programming to fit in securely with there browser. VB6 hands have to now learn .net to program.. I dunno.

I think if one takes the time to learn programming, forget about working for some one else to make money of your skill. Sell yourself and keep 100% of the profit.

Edit: to ad - your friend is right in a way. Look back on the days of dos and how much code was put in place and how little memory was used. than look at it with VB6 and now .dotnet. Seems the PC needs at least 2 gigs of ram to run things from the days of 32 mb ram coding.

[edit on 20-1-2008 by WorldShadow]



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 02:11 PM
link   
I've been programming business applications for over 15 years and tend to change jobs every couple of years or so because I prefer to do large redevelopment projects and then go on to the next one.

What I've seen is that technology is constantly changing and improving, yet so many of the developers I have worked with are stuck at one level of technology and either can't or won't educate themselves any further.

In my opinion, these are the people whose skills will eventually be outdated and they will no longer be marketable. I personally have no problem finding jobs because I make the effort to keep my skillset updated and I'm always open to relocating to wherever the job is.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 03:24 PM
link   
I've been writing code since I was 14 and that means I've been doing that for decades now. I took software classes in graduate school, even though I was pursuing a degree in natural sciences. I've worked in industry and research on a wide variety of projects.

And with that kind of experience my comment is: the OP is way off mark on many levels.
New languages more complex and slower then before? Give me a break already.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 03:29 PM
link   
Case in point though, I don't know much about programming, but why does a typical modern word processor need 512MB of RAM when one ten years ago required a fraction of that? And they do the same thing. Extra bloat somewhere...?



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 04:01 PM
link   
Bloat is the name of the game as it drives the sales of ever faster machines required to keep ahead of the expanded needs for all that fancy desktop etc.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 06:27 PM
link   
What I here from the people I work with who've been job hunting recently is that in most places experienced programmers aren't allowed to write code or even review it any more. You are forced into Management and requirements gathering.

The Indian's are telling me that America corporations are buying up cheap land in the outskirts of the city and setting up huge IT complexes with 500,000 employee's. They each have basically there own cities there where own the housing, the real estate, the retail and the jobs. The jobs are real mindless, like I said where anyone with experience is moved into management.This is the future of programming as far as I can see.

There are still great advances going on in programming. The Haskell language, for instance, is so beautiful, that I feel like I'm discovering god's mysteries when I use it. But still, most applications today are slower than word perfect 5.1.

I've been programming since I was 12 and I've been using linux for 14 years and I say she's right.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 06:42 PM
link   
That's actually a common sentiment about companies such a Microshaft.
The fact is, software isn't the only piece of technology that has reached a certain level of obsolescence. Silicon has long reached it's limits and companies like Inhell have produced machine with multiple cores that overheat and burn out, often after the warranty has expired. Conspiracy? No, more like racketeering. These people are making a bundle off of shoddy products. Just look at car companies. The car isn't anymore efficient than it was 10 years ago, in some cases it's worse, construction of automobiles has become very crappy, which is why they fall apart in five years...And yet the price remains the same? Racketeering not conspiracy.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 06:55 PM
link   
Well I must say that I can both agree and disagree with her statements. I agree that a lot of "amateur" developers out there are learning these new technologies without having any clue of how the internal structures, classes, methods, words, dwords, adders, subtractors, mealy and moore machines work on the lower end side. "They" may be doomed. However I have a degree in comp sci and have been taught from the "ground up" on hardware and software architecture. Yes I have even coded in 1's and 0's. I have hardwired adders and subtracters out of individual and/or/nor gates to do math with no software at all. I have also learned assembly with microprocessors. I have learned from the ground up how to program, and when at that level you truly know and understand why things like .net are nifty and make programming faster. .NET is simply a collection of classes that are commonly used. Nothing more, nothing less. I do agree that .NET is a bit bloated, but that is the cost you pay for having to not code every single class, that is used by almost every program written, over and over. Say I want to start a new thread to the processor. Well, I could write a custom class of possibly a hundred lines or more, or, in .NET, I can simply call one line:

Thread t = new Thread(new ThreadStart(ThreadProc));

Done. Thread created and I didn't have to do the mundane task of programming the whole class for a thread. It is this reason that I can meet programming deadlines writing programs that do not span months and months. Its called "Rapid Application Development".

What about the overhead of the system? Computer hardware has far surpassed the software curve. There are 64-bit processors out in the field now that most programs can even utilize fully. Hardware at the current point has more than enough power to handle bigger programming libraries, even .NET.

The Open Source software movement is still very alive and well. I do not know where you are getting your info from, but there is still a wide movement and most of them are in it to the end. Most of our stuff is based on C and C++, (which is where I like to stay).

It is this kind of thinking that stops advancement in its tracks. Do you really think we could have created Nuclear Power stations without the advancement of technology in that area? Did they simply say "OMG this whole process is to advanced and is bloated" and stop in their tracks? I think not.

And a note on the Indian software houses. I would say that 90% of my assignments are repairing and cleaning up indian software programmers "amateur" and completely bloated and unmaintainable programs. They turn out some terrible code, that works, but is not modular, not upgradeable, and is half the time written in a functional based method, rather than object oriented.



The sky is not falling.



posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 07:00 PM
link   
hmmmmmmmmm. sounds like manufacturing jobs in america today.
leaving america for larger profits... thank you america.


[edit on 20-1-2008 by last time here]



posted on Jan, 21 2008 @ 04:17 PM
link   
I kind of have to agree with the op on this to a point. Most of the languages lately range from bad to horrible in terms of reliability and speed. The big part where they're totally wrong is with vista. vista is total crap, plain and simple.

When you start profiling programs, pretty much, any well written program in olderlanguages tend to knock the stuffing out of ones made in some of the more modern languages. c vs c++ is an easy one. OOP style programming has so much overhead for essentially nothing that its laughable. don't even get me started on that festering pile that they call .net either. Then again, I come from a field where speed is very important, with stability a close second.

the problem is, more of the new languages are made to protect a programmer from himself, rather than adding much in the way of a useful toolbox. When you start adding layers of abstraction further away from straight ML, then you keep adding all manner of extra code that isn't really needed.

I can't blame the programmers totally though, I blame the schools. Yeah, these older guys learned on systems with 4-8 megs or less of memory, and small hard drives, if there were any at all. You used to fight and cram for every byte of storage you could, and still maintain a good speed. now, when you have multiple gigs of memory at your fingertips, its easy to get sloppy and wasteful.

open source is one answer but it isn't the only one. better education is one thing, actually making real programmers instead of module assemblers is another.



posted on Jan, 21 2008 @ 04:41 PM
link   
I disagree with your programmer friend. If anything, programmers are doomed because of outsourcing, not new languages and syntax. All the new languages coming out are ensuring more jobs! Of course, those that are so married to their ways will be flushed out for not learning the new stuff, but that's always been the case with any sort of technology.


Originally posted by Buck Division
software development tools are all extremely faddish, each generation of new programming languages is slower, more complex and constraining than the last generation


I disagree. programing languages evolve with technology... so I guess if you are trying to run software from 2008, on a computer from 1998.. then yes, in comparison - it's slower and more complex... but not necessarily. It may just appear that way at face value. In actuality, languages are doing more and more.

A good example is Flash. Originally, it was made to just do animations, but people started programming advanced applications with it... so each new version had new features with it, to accommodate the types of projects people were using it for. The latest version is actually the most efficient yet.



and that the really talented pool of programmers have moved on to other fields of endeavors.


like what? I mean, if you are a programmer... you are a programmer, unless you change career fields. I don't see a need to do that though. If anything, get more into the creative aspect of the business to avoid being outsourced. You can outsource all the technical jobs in the world, but as for brainstorming and dealing with clients, they will always prefer someone face to face that they can understand.



The few talented engineers that stick with it are inevitably going to be disappointed when the next generation of software development methodologies comes out, or the next, or the next… They will leave the field also. The smart ones are leaving the field now – the die-hards are going to be smashed on the rocks.


pure comedy. why? I am the opposite. I am excited with all the new languages and technologies coming out. It's a GREAT time to be a programmer. Sure beats messing with ADA, COBOL, FORTRAN or heck, raw assembly code.



The result for consumers: software is going to become incredibly expensive and brittle. That goes for all applications and all tools. People are going to be smacked with horrendous obsolescence, the likes of which we have never seen, and it is going to cause widespread suffering as people try to adapt to new and evermore inferior software.


wrong again. if anything, the world is moving more towards an open-source, freeware community, not more proprietary stuff. Open source is the way to go, it has more dedicated developers, faster development, and more stable source (nothing to hide!) - security flaws are easily observed and fixed by the entire community, instead of a small group of programmers.



She specifically cites the “.NET” framework, from Microsoft as one of the worst reworks of old ideas she has ever seen. (She says it is just an incredibly obfuscated and mind-numbing rehash of existing technologies.) She also says Microsoft Vista will likely be the last half-good operating system Microsoft ever creates, and it is quickly downhill from here.


hah, so she thinks that .NET is a representation of all programming languages? far from it. I have beta tested plenty of MS products and software, and can tell you - they are FAR from being the standard. They are just like any other nebulous corporation that rushes to put stuff out on the market before it's ready. Yes, .NET sucks. So what? I fail to see how that has anything to do with programmers being doomed.



The motive: Drive out competition, drive up prices, increase dependence on the software dictators at the top, at the expense of all end users. To do that, they have to sacrifice software programmers and professionals.


again, open source has emerged as a leading option because of this approach. People realize they are being forced into using proprietary software, and open source is one way of avoiding the entire issue.

80% of all the software I use is open source. I even make lots of my own software.



Any software programmers out there who can back up or refute her statements?


she sounds more like a bitter programmer that has lost her passion... That's exactly why I stopped developing for .NET and other MS products over 5 years ago. This is totally just a rant against change. Programming in .NET is absolutely the most boring, mindless and uninspiring thing I had ever done, in regards to programming. If I had stuck with MS for even a year longer, I'd probably be a construction worker or something by now.

Now, if she had taken the outsourcing angle, I would be in total agreement.

nonetheless, great thread.

[edit on 21-1-2008 by scientist]



posted on Jan, 21 2008 @ 07:45 PM
link   
reply to post by xmaddness
 


I have to agree with xmaddness, pretty much 100%. I've written a lot of code in a number of assembly languages, C, C++, Fortran, Pascal, Java, C# (.Net), SQL, HTML/Javascript, Flash/Actionscript, and as much as I hate to admit it, VB.Net.

I've worked with open source projects, closed source products, and been involved with both small projects and a number of very large projects as well.

The only real problem I see is that more and more programmers are not learning the low level details. While they can still code, especially with increasingly hand-holding tools and languages, they don't develop a sense of what's really happening underneath, which can lead to poor performance.

Another arguable problem is that Web applications/distributed applications are by necessity, loosely coupled, usually consisting of or supporting integration with many possible languages and HTML.

The problem for semi-decent programmers of yore is that to make the leap to this model from a much more structured/tightly coupled model where everything in a typical system was in one, maybe two languages max, making it easier to understand can be a real challenge.

I've seen it time and again that people who move into management, project management, or non-coding "architecture", just can't keep up. At the same time, people who are coming out of school learn the high level models but not the low level details. I'm guessing that at much as she would not like to admit it, your friend is in the former category. People in the latter can get deeper as they go, but in a way, programming has almost become too easy and many people believe they are programmers but will often not learn the low level details. For some applications, this is ok, especially LOB apps. Ask them to build a high-scale, high-performance system, and you'll probably have trouble.

I don't think open source is going away, and I think closed source/semi-closed source projects will continue to live as well. Two different development models, both functional.

Again, I agree. The sky is not falling. Seems like someone should let go of the quest to be a modern programmer and make the full transition to management. Of course, I could be wrong


[edit on 21-1-2008 by lifestudent]



posted on Jan, 21 2008 @ 07:55 PM
link   
The only time programmers will be out of work, is when the machines themselves write the code.

Until that point, yes programmers are going to have to learn new stuff, but thats what the good ones do, at the same time not re-inventing the wheel (unless the beta was square).

There will be a number of new "visual" software allowing average users to create applications easily, like the yahoo pipes, quartz composer stuff. As long as there are computers there will be lots of coders.



new topics

top topics



 
0

log in

join