Re: Tonight's Death Match: "Objective Heresy" vs. "Church of Objectology."

Paul Benninghoff (
Fri, 13 Feb 1998 17:13:47 -0800 (PST)

(wups, sent this reply to just doug initially)

Doug Lea writes:
> Two things I (quite seriously) do not understand:
> 1. How it can be that people do or do not like objects.

My theory, Doug: two words -- "hype backlash".

the hype causes things like your (dilbertian) boss coming in one day,
after reading some article from the popular press, and announcing that
everything's being converted to C++... or you go for a job interview
and they don't care what you've done, only if you know Java,... or...

my conjecture, alot of people have been forced to convert (sometimes
painfully) to, or force their systems into, object technology for
less-than-legitimate, hype-driven reasons. Thus the backlash.

My initial reaction to all the object hype was amazement at how the
not-at-all-profound repackaging of alot of ideas that had been around
for a while had suddenly become our savior, the golden bullet, a
panacea, etc. I was a big proponent of functional and declarative
languages at the time (But I did not fail to see the writing on the
wall... I bit the bullet and learned C++,... and what a bullet! --
yeah, the "C++ experience" is surely a source of the distaste as

Of course I was really just bitter that my formerly-overhyped horse
(AI) was heading south while a horse that I had no stake in was
in ascendance ;) Another reason for not liking objects -- people
annoyed that they backed the wrong horse!

Now, of course, I've seen the light... ha... actually, I accept
objects as being pretty nice, especially in a distributed setting.
Still, it surprises me like not-at-all that so much research
focuses on the need to break encapsulation (or otherwise get around
the problems of encapsulation) to get decent performance. Commitment to
objects is a given, so we better do research to figure out how to fix

As for what Von Neumann might have thunk,.. maybe we should "Ask
Marilyn"? ;)