Learning ASP and VBScript

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So I started a web job recently that I was told involved Perl and PHP.
That’s cool, I’m up on both of those and it would be extra fun because there might be database work involved.


Well, it turns out that it isn’t so.
In fact, it’s a server that only has ASP and VBScript.
They may have JScript too.
But i figure that writing stuff in ages-old BASIC that I leanred in the late 1970’s is safer than learning a new language and implementing an app with it in the space of a couple of weeks.

Man, what a letdown.
I had forgotten just how brain-damaged BASIC really is.
I was HOPING that VBScript, being a huge subset of Microsoft’s cornerstone, Visual Basic, would have maybe, hopefully evolved nicely.

But no, I discover that it has idiotic things like different keywords for functions that return a value versus ones that don’t.
I mean, come on!
It’s not like the funcion declares its return type or anything.
And how ass-backwards is it that you return a value by assigning it to the name of the function?
Geez! Grow up a couple of decades, why don’t you?
They had BASICs with “return” statements back in the 1980’s.

Sorry, it’s just so sad to work with such a big pile of stinking poo.
Not that Perl is a panacea by any stretch of the imagination.
Nor PHP, which is really just a castrated Perl.
If you’ve been reading you know that I loooove
Ruby,
that darling of scripting languages.

development, work.

About rae

I'm a long-time Mac and iOS developer. I'm also a big fan of Ruby on Rails and relational databases. I tend to work remotely, in my basement with occasional trips to the office. I'm also a big videophile, both TV and film, and can't wait for a good, inexpensive home 4k solution.

3 comments on “Learning ASP and VBScript

  1. Jeff K

    From the Wikipedia page on VB:

    A famous formulation by Edsger Dijkstra was, “It is practically impossible to teach good programming to students that have had a prior exposure to BASIC: as potential programmers they are mentally mutilated beyond hope of regeneration”

  2. David "Phthphthphth" Barker

    Thank you, Prefects of the Congregation of the Faith.

    Cylons are way better than Macs, but you don’t hear us crowing. Except for now.

  3. rae Post author

    In its defence, VB supports objects. I am looking into it, and hope it may allay my qualms to some degree.

    I’ve learned a lot of different BASICs in the past (and yes, you are supposed to spell it in all-uppercase; it stands for “Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code”), starting with Commodore BASIC on the Pet, then AppleSoft BASIC and also Apple’s “Integer BASIC” (faster I think). It was a big revelation when I found a BASIC that ***DIDN’T REQUIRE LINE NUMBERS***. Heh. Up until that point, all the BASICs had required that every line have a line number, which you entered as part of your code. Indeed, you had to be careful choosing your line numbers so that you would have “room” to insert any new lines you needed to fix bugs, etc. Special “renumbering” tools were a godsend when they showed up, I’ll tell ya.

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