Saturday, February 28, 2009

Multi-language madness

Picture 2.pngRecent weeks have been dominated with work rather than hobbies.

In the current climate I'm pleased to be fully employed. I'm working on a very ajaxy web application and jumping between PHP, Javascript and python which is driving me slightly around the bend.

When doing modern web development you realise just how vital a tool FireFox with Firebug is, but this week saw the release of a beta of Safari 4. Safari's built-in tools are getting really good and partially because of the speed I've moved over to it for my primary testing, debugging and general web use.

If, like me, you had the Growl notifier for installed you'll find that Mail crashes right away after you install Safari 4. You need to remove the growl plugin from ~/Library/Mail/Bundles/.

For the last few years I've been working in Python and using the Django web framework. The project I've just taken over is built with an excellent PHP framework called CodeIgniter.

Like any MVC style framework there are two immediately good things: there's a place for everything and everything has it's place, and you do get some good stuff for free. It certainly helps someone coming to an existing code base to quickly be able to guess where in the tree parts of the code are.

I like CodeIgniter, but Django is a hard act to follow and I find myself comparing how few lines of code would be needed to do each part in Django/python. PHP just feels like a mess of a language and library compared to python.

The tools I'm using mostly at present are:

I'm off to visit my end customer in Malaysia tomorrow, it will be interesting to see how the "multimedia super corridor" is faring these days.

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