I was recently asked about taking over support for an existing application. I’ll leave out what it does – suffice it to say it is web based, has a simple 3-5 page UI for the public to buy something, and about a 15-20 page set of back end interfaces for trained customer service and admin people to use. So less than 30 screens overall mKay?
The application was said to be written in Java. I know Java – I don’t like it, but I know it. If its small, I could be persuaded to pick up the maintenance.
However, I got a source drop and I was totally appalled. First, it suffers from the usual Java framework-itus.
It seems we’ve lost track of something here. “Locality of Reference” In general, all the stuff that deals with the product selection page ought to be visible by looking into the file representing that page, then maybe drilling into components. The problem here is that, everytime I have to drill down, I have to switch languages. And context switches are bad for programmer productivity – mKay?
I’ve turned down the job. I don’t have time to learn all that junk for this little app. The client needs a new installation – for 25 pages that do mostly CRUD to mysql. If I do it, I’m thinking plain old PHP with an ORM. If I can find an ORM for PHP.
So far I’ve looked at Doctrine (not yet ready for production but it looks cool), Propel – and some others. The really off-putting bit is their slavish insistence on creating the xml mapping file – just like Hibernate. Of course, I have an existing database. The XML file they want is in the db. It just isn’t XML. Still, all the information is available for query – so why are they bothering me with this junk? Read the damn schema and make me some classes. I’ll eliminate the many to many mappings by hand. Sheesh. No wonder there’s a software crisis.
Hey framework people, stop making me write monkey code – figure out how to eliminate extra work – not make it. One meta model is enough.