Hacker News new | comments | show | ask | jobs | submit login

Whatever the next disruption is in software engineering, please dear God let it be immune-by-design to this type of distraction.

While your sentiment is positive, wouldn't this mean either designing things in a rigid, unambiguous manner (think C's semicolons) or changing human nature? Ambiguous choices plus human nature equals debates. An argument about semicolons does seem silly and your proposed outcome sounds nice, but how could we get there?

You say "rigid, unambiguous manner" as if it was something bad, not agile, boring or uncool. I disagree with this way to present things. A good computer language should have a solid unambiguous syntax (think lisp), upon which we can build agile tools and avoid the daily useless messes we get from JavaScript.

Edit: rm js rant

My point wasn't that arguments are avoidable altogether. It was simply that one would hope the arguments would evolve in complexity or at the very least change in specifics. Since that doesn't seem to be happening, and the same old tired topics keep coming up, I think it's important that designers of future software engineering tools consider how immune their systems are to the grab bag of arguments we've been hearing since the 1970s about syntax and semantics.

We already have something akin to that - Python (PEP 8 specifically). People still find things to argue about though, presumably because they enjoy it. On the upside, it happens less often!

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact