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The Weird and The Wonderful


The Weird and The Wonderful forum is a place to post Coding Horrors, Worst Practices, and the occasional flash of brilliance.

We all come across code that simply boggles the mind. Lazy kludges, embarrassing mistakes, horrid workarounds and developers just not quite getting it. And then somedays we come across - or write - the truly sublime.

Post your Best, your worst, and your most interesting. But please - no programming questions . This forum is purely for amusement and discussions on code snippets. All actual programming questions will be removed.

GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
R. Erasmus11-Jun-13 4:28
memberR. Erasmus11-Jun-13 4:28 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
jesarg7-Jun-13 7:14
memberjesarg7-Jun-13 7:14 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
Chris Maunder7-Jun-13 15:57
adminChris Maunder7-Jun-13 15:57 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
AspDotNetDev7-Jun-13 16:18
protectorAspDotNetDev7-Jun-13 16:18 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
V.9-Jun-13 23:22
professionalV.9-Jun-13 23:22 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
harold aptroot10-Jun-13 4:19
memberharold aptroot10-Jun-13 4:19 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
YvesDaoust10-Jun-13 21:47
memberYvesDaoust10-Jun-13 21:47 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
Fran Porretto11-Jun-13 2:00
memberFran Porretto11-Jun-13 2:00 

Third-party technology is just great...when it's right at all.

Let's leave aside considerations such as bugs in the package. IBM's old mantra that "you never get the last thousand bugs out" will be true until the Sun goes nova, and we all know it. But the probability of such bugs in a third-party package is much less than that of bugs in one's own, newly designed solutions, so it's a false trail in discussions like this one.

The ugly secret about third-party tech is that packaged solutions are never free of constraints. To use a third-party library, you have to be reasonably certain that the constraints it will impose on your application are bearable. Sometimes, you have to err on the side of caution and decline to take the risk.

My business is hard-real-time, so I'm very sensitive to that. If a third-party package can't guarantee me performance within my time constraints, then I can't use it. Not "won't." Can't.

Other sorts of development have other needs. I recently turned away from a popular XML parser because it imposed a callback requirement on a legacy application whose architecture was inimical to that approach. In another recent case, I spurned a set of .NET facilities because they'd clash with my need to keep the addresses of certain dynamic memory constructs stable. No doubt there are other cases of this sort that I just can't recall this morning.

The application is the ultimate determinant. Does the third-party library you're considering fit within the application's constraint envelope? Does it make "philosophical" demands on the application's architecture? Might there be forward-looking consequences to using it that should be considered in the present? Will your wife find out? Everything matters. As some very bright people have said:

"You can never do only one thing." -- Marc Stiegler.

"TANSTAAFL!" -- Robert A. Heinlein.

(This message is programming you in ways you cannot detect. Be afraid.)

GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
vonb11-Jun-13 2:40
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
Dominic Amann11-Jun-13 3:52
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
jim lahey11-Jun-13 7:00
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
StatementTerminator11-Jun-13 5:08
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
BrainiacV11-Jun-13 5:40
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
StatementTerminator11-Jun-13 6:00
memberStatementTerminator11-Jun-13 6:00 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
jnlt11-Jun-13 7:10
memberjnlt11-Jun-13 7:10 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
CarlosAlbertoEstrada11-Jun-13 7:11
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GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
StatementTerminator11-Jun-13 7:43
memberStatementTerminator11-Jun-13 7:43 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
RafagaX11-Jun-13 8:31
memberRafagaX11-Jun-13 8:31 
GeneralRe: Productivity Wars Pin
jschell11-Jun-13 9:19
memberjschell11-Jun-13 9:19 
GeneralDeveloper whose first language is not English Pin
Chris Quinn7-Jun-13 4:17
memberChris Quinn7-Jun-13 4:17 
GeneralRe: Developer whose first language is not English Pin
jim lahey7-Jun-13 5:57
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GeneralRe: Developer whose first language is not English Pin
OriginalGriff7-Jun-13 6:02
protectorOriginalGriff7-Jun-13 6:02 
GeneralRe: Developer whose first language is not English Pin
ENOTTY7-Jun-13 6:08
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GeneralRe: Developer whose first language is not English Pin
Amitosh Swain11-Jun-13 17:34
memberAmitosh Swain11-Jun-13 17:34 
JokeRe: Developer whose first language is not English Pin
VUnreal2-Jul-13 10:39
memberVUnreal2-Jul-13 10:39 

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