Thursday, 28 December, 2000
Fun with ASP Programming
I'm still working on that custom Web application for a client (see December 14), and I'm continually impressed with how easily I can get things working with VB Script. I never thought I'd say it, but I'm actually beginning to like working with VB. Its oddities still annoy me from time to time, and I dislike having to run the program in order to find syntax errors (the scourge of interpreted applications), but I can get things done so quickly! I spent Saturday morning writing some rather involved HTML parsing and generation code, and a couple of hours today adding a couple of other needed features. These are things that I thought would be hard in any language, but I'm able to put them together in VB Script just as fast as I could have in Delphi. And it leaves C/C++ in the dust as far as ease of application development goes.
Writing ASP pages in VB Script is very reminiscent of my hacking days, when I wrote small programs to solve very narrowly-defined problems. Small programs give much more freedom for experimentation and they're more fun to write because I don't have to worry about the "big picture" of a huge application design. My final application will be a few thousand lines of VB Script spread over a couple dozen source modules—a far cry from a half million lines of very-OOP Delphi code spread over thousands of modules. Sure, it's still possible to write crap, but it's also very easy to write a complete, working, useful application. I never would have thought that I'd actually have fun writing VB Script. Amazing.