The Silent Llama of Doom Thoughts from a quiet Llama.

Choosing Clojurescript

I have, quite unintentionally, become a web programmer. I never wanted to be. I've always preferred doing systems programming - especially system stuff that does not involve GUIs. However there are some distinct advantages to building systems available via a browser - things like deployment, upgrades and availability - and since I work in a small development team I guess it was inevitable.

So I learnt javascript. Not particularly well, mind you. I'm one of those hapless souls who knows jquery more than he knows javascript. The thing with javascript is that, for the most part, it's perfectly fine. Need to show or hide a part of your webpage? No problem. Click handler on a button? Javascript is easy and jquery is easier. Full complex component with state, validation, ajax, timeouts, access control and who knows what: not so easy anymore.

Javascript, as a language, doesn't cater for 'big' projects. Well - that's not entirely true - a lot of work has been done to modernize javascript and frameworks like Angular and Ember have come along to fill in the gaps. Things like commonjs help for structuring things. All in all Javascript isn't nearly as bad as it was. The thing is I, personally, don't like the language enough to want to become an expert in it. It's really just a personal preference. I don't mind it. I just want something else.

So - why Clojurescript in particular? Why not Scala.js? Or Elm? Or even Coffeescript?

Well - for some reason I've never clicked with Scala …



The question I find myself struggling to answer is this: why another blog? If I look in the mirror I don't see someone that has something tangible to offer, just this guy y'know?

I want to write about programming. It's what I do day to day. Something that takes up such a part of my life is a rich source of material for something like a blog. The thing is I don't know if I have anything to offer. I've been working in this field for years and the more I learn the less confident I am that I know anything at all.

The thing is my daily experiences have led me to the conclusion that programming is simultaneously easy and practically impossible. I'm at the point in my career where I can write a program that can access a database, store information and pull it out again without any problems. In that respect it's easy. What to put in a database, how you store that information - those are much more difficult questions with answers that aren't always obvious.

So the thing is - what do I, as someone who can't claim to really have any deep insights about his job other than to say he doesn't understand enough of it, have to offer? I guess, if nothing else, at least I can be an example. If anyone else out there struggles with this stuff then it could be heartening to know they're not alone.

Apart from programming this blog is …