C is Manly, Python is for “n00bs”: How False Stereotypes Turn Into Technical “Truths”

2 years ago




Interesting points about the social forces behind some of our technical debates. "Language x > Language y" is really a way for us to form in-groups and defend our own choices. It's often circumstaces like what we learned in school, or what we had to learn on the job, that determine what languages we learn. Defending the choices, we feel compelled to try to make objective arguments, or to put pejorative labels ('academic', 'for girls', etc.) on the people using the languages we don't know.

Re: Coolness



The line about PL research loving Haskell despite it being not industry-ready. The authors here are being bitten by the same kind of socially-constructed bias that they discuss in other forms in their article. I think! Anyway, 'industrial readiness' is such a subjective label, extrapolated unfairly from the uncontroversial fact that Haskell is used disproportionally by academics. Haskell is industry-underrepresented, not industry-unready, and a lot of Haskellers encounter exactly that kind of conflation between fact and extrapolation when they're confronted by people who claim Haskell is too far removed from reality to be practical. This isn't the same degree of persecution that women in tech face, by a long-shot, but it's a miniature version of that, and a minor missed discussion opportunity in the article. No feathers ruffled in the Idris case, where the main contributers actively discourage people from using Idris in industry b/c it's still changing so fast :)

Re: Rigor