I recently got a job with a company that is a Scala shop - oh joy -
using Typesafe Akka and Play - oh joy oh joy.
I was so happy, and looking forward to using what I had learned in
Coursera Functional Programming in Scala.
Alas, I have had to pitch in on the front-end work, using
OMG - everything is based on side effects and mutable data
bloody nightmare, and object-oriented programming using prototypes
is insane. Boilerplate everywhere.
Programming this way is definitely not fun, as in, unpleasant,
frustrating, insane, stressful, etc. Everything is spaghetti. It
takes insanely long to do the most simple things, and code is
practically impossible to reverse engineer. It is so hard to reason
about things I feel like I am loosing my mind, and everything you do
is: hack a little, hack a little more, pray, pray, pray, keep
hacking. Is also seems highly dysfunctional, as in, as far away from
FP as you can get.
Now that I got that out of my system, I am wondering what the future
holds for front-end programming. I hope that Scala.js will tame some
of the insanity, but I somehow feel that the current paradigm of web
app implementation is deeply flawed in too many fundamental ways.
Certainly Scala.js will at least bring static type checking, but can
we find ways to minimize or eliminate side effects and mutable data?
Part of me wonders if James Gosling was on the right track with
NeWS, but that did not last long. And why did running Java byte code
in the web browser fail so badly that we ended up with what seems to
be the worst case of all software development environments possible?
Am I just suffering web app developer shock, or do other people have
concerns about how this model of programming that has evolved?
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