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Re: Picking the Tools -- Marrying processing models to data models

> Linda Northrop gave a nice (tough a bit marketing-oriented) keynote at
> ICSE in Toronto last week on product line development. One of the core
> statements was that
> OO hasn't delivered as much as it promised in the reuse area, which is
> not to say
> that it hasn't delivered in other areas such as dealing with complexity
> and raising design into the problem domain.

Again I don't know that OO was so instrumental in this.  True enough, in
simulation systems, one parent of OO, initial design was recognized far
more than in its first-generation procedural peers, but I'd say that
Wirth, Djikstra and the rest of the Structured Programming folks'
work on modular and functional decomposition did as much to establish
software design as engineering.  Again, this predates the advent of
"modern" OO with Smalltalk and C++.

> It just so happens though, that software engineers and programmers
> prefer evolution to revolution, so OO won't go away anytime soon. XML is
> not post-OO, because OO isn't over for a long time.

I do want to clarify, since my position has been caricatured in this
thread as being "now we have XML, so we don't need OO".  Not only have I
said repeatedly that OO is important, but that XML itself does not obviate
OO.  My point was that the *popularity* of XML is encouraging developers
to open their eyes to modeling tools beyond the native reach of OO.  I
don't think this distinction is at all subtle.

I want OO to take its place as a tool: an important tool, but one that can
be selected when it's of most use, and passed over when this is not so.  I
honestly can't see why this would be considered such a radical concept.

> Advanced separation of concerns is a much better bet for replacing OO
> (see IBM's hyperj and aspect-oriented programming), and has great
> potential for improving reuse. How XML fits in there remains to be seen.

Interesting.  When I've expressed my OO-skepticism in the past, I've heard
people tell me that I "need to" explore AOP, but I've never found the time
to bite.  It seems I must find the time in order to intelligently develop
my practice.


Uche Ogbuji                               Principal Consultant
uche.ogbuji@fourthought.com               +1 303 583 9900 x 101
Fourthought, Inc.                         http://Fourthought.com
4735 East Walnut St, Ste. C, Boulder, CO 80301-2537, USA
Software-engineering, knowledge-management, XML, CORBA, Linux, Python