That's Why There Are Choices, People

I was having a quick tech discussion the other day on a non-tech message board I visit on a daily basis. I had mentioned how frustrating it is to have to spend hours developing for good ol' obsolete Internet Explorer 6.0, and why people are so damn lazy to upgrade. There are countless reasons why people don't upgrade, which I won't go into now to avoid a long, long rant on why I think these people should be stripped from their computing privileges. But I was talking about the recent developments in web browsers, in particular how Firefox 3.1 is going to be much faster, or how Internet Explorer 8.0 is promising to play better with web standards, I received this delightful comment from one of the few techies (and one of the few females) in that forum:

He can shove Firefox 3 where the sun doesn't shine, and if he suggests Internet Explorer 8 in person I will be forced to cram his balls up over his head whilst they are still attached to him.

Just lovely. And I hadn't even suggested that people upgrade!

The particular reasons she gave me as to why she made this statement are irrelevant to the discussion ("Firefox 3 doesn't support all my add-ons yet and Internet Explorer lost me a long, long time ago."), but something slightly ticked me off about this brash statement.

Every single person on this planet has an opinion to express, for whatever reason. People involved in computers aren't excluded. I'd say we absolutely love expressing our opinions about a myriad of things, leading to sometimes heated (and entertaining) discussions: Windows vs. Linux vs. Mac, Ruby vs. Python, vi vs. emacs... No matter what you say, there will always be someone to express the opposite.

I learned a long time ago to avoid these discussions altogether. Why? It's not because I'm a poor debater and fear I'm going to lose (which is most likely true). It's because no one in this world will ever be pleased. That's why there are choices in this world. To put it as simple as possible, someone wasn't content with something, so they made another thing. And they're happy with it.

So if I'm happy with Ruby and Rails, and you're extremely happy with Python and Django, then I respect your opinion, sir. Just don't come down on me and run down a zillion reasons why Ruby or Rails suck (which are probably variants of "Rails Can't Scale"). Be happy with what you have, I'll be happy with what I have, and we can co-exist nicely in this vast software development universe.

Written by

Dennis Martinez

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