Wasabi: In-House Programming Language at Fog Creek

This is funny, although I’m not sure if it’s funny “ha-ha” or funny “interesting”. Or both. What happened is that Joel Spolsky posted an essay titled “Language Wars”, wherein he recommends Java, C#, and PHP (and a half-hearted nod to Python) as web app development languages, not because they’re necessarily good but because they’re popular. And he pooh-poohs Ruby on Rails not because it isn’t good but simply because it isn’t long-established. But then at the end of his piece he claims that in-house at Fog Creek, they develop their flagship FogBugz app using “Wasabi”, their own in-house programming language and compiler. The contradiction here — of recommending Java/C#/PHP because they’re so widely used, vs. admitting that they themselves use a language no one else uses — led David Heinemeier Hansson to wonder whether “Wasabi” was a joke. (It isn’t.)

Saturday, 2 September 2006