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RE: Strong Typing, Dynamic Languages, What to do?

I have exactly the same problem. :-)

Hoping-somebody-else-has-soothing-words-ly y'rs,


> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Brent Fulgham [SMTP:brent.fulgham@xpsystems.com]
> Sent:	Wednesday, March 20, 2002 12:11 PM
> To:	PLT-Scheme
> Subject:	Strong Typing, Dynamic Languages, What to do?
> I find myself in an uncomfortable state of language equivocation.  I seem
> to be forever vascillating between the strongly-typed and
> "dynamic/untyped" programming languages.
> The proponents of so-called "strongly-typed" languages in the
> Hindley-Milner school make the seemingly compelling argument that such
> type-checks provide superior program quality and reliability by catching
> syntax and logic errors before execution time.
> On the other hand, such strong typing would seem to prevent the
> construction of polymorphic routines that allow a wide variety of types to
> be accepted as arguments.  It also seems to prevent you from arbitrarily
> expanding the types of data that a particular program might be exposed to
> without rebuilding the entire world.  You do not always have the luxury of
> revising an object (or type) heirarchy, especially if you don't have the
> source code for all the different units, etc.
> However, my experience with some "typeless" languages (notably Visual
> Basic and Python) lead me to believe that this dynamicism often shifts
> bugs forward in time, so that you do not encounter them until users are
> exercising a program in ways not previously anticipated by the SQA team --
> or when the program runs in an environment that differs in some fashion
> from the original test bed.
> I'm hoping the readers on this list can offer soothing words that will
> help me end this internal struggle and allow me to make rational language
> selection choices.
> Thanks,
> -Brent