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If Programming Languages Were Religions 844

bshell writes "With Christmas around the corner I know we are all thinking about religion, or at least maybe wondering why this one religion dominates the rest for these few weeks. A fellow named Rodrigo Braz Monteiro (amz) posted this list comparing each programming language to a religion. Guaranteed to make you chuckle and generate a good long thread here on slashdot. Great way to pass the time as work winds down this week and we relate to our own programming faiths during this very special time of year. Merry PHPmas." Fortunately Pastafarianism is referenced.
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If Programming Languages Were Religions

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  • by genner ( 694963 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:49AM (#26144339)
    PHP is the one true way.
  • wow (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stoolpigeon ( 454276 ) * <bittercode@gmail> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:49AM (#26144341) Homepage Journal

    amazing how offense free that is. that had to take a bit of effort.

    • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:54AM (#26144393)

      Except for the part about only accusing Islam of murderous tendencies?
      It's sad that only biases which disagree with our own internal ones are noticed.

      • Re:wow (Score:4, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:58AM (#26144425)
        I personally found offensive that he compared C++ to Islam. C++ is much more peaceful.
      • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:02AM (#26144479)

        Like how you ignored the part about Fundamentalist Christians burning people at the stake.

      • Re:wow (Score:4, Insightful)

        by rthille ( 8526 ) <<web-slashdot> <at> <rangat.org>> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:12AM (#26144579) Homepage Journal

        He didn't accuse Islam of murderous tendencies, he asked that if you were a muslim that you not kill him.

        Like it or not, Muslims are more likely to kill in response to perceived offenses against their religion, and his post makes light of that fact. If you're a moderate muslim and you find that offensive, then you need to do two things: get over it, since free speech is a right in the U.S.A. and therefore you're likely to find offensive speech living here, or on the internet; secondly, you should be decrying the violence promulgated by extremist muslims in the name of Islam. Part of the problem with moderate religionists is that they give cover for the extremists under the umbrella of "respect for religion". If they want their religion to continue getting respect, they need to police their own.

        • Re:wow (Score:4, Insightful)

          by digitig ( 1056110 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:49AM (#26145069)

          If they want their religion to continue getting respect, they need to police their own.

          Er, how? The moderates usually have no authority over the extremists, so how should they police them? In what sense are the extremists the moderates' "own"? Your logic is like saying that I am responsible for the murder and torture of Baby P [timesonline.co.uk] because as a British subject I am responsible for policing my own. Just how might I have done that?

          • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

            by tbannist ( 230135 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:08AM (#26145307)

            It's a difficult question to answer, but it's one that the moderates are going to have to figure out. Any group that can't police their own extremists will, sooner or later, find themselves dragged into a war with everyone else. That's the nature of fanatical extremism, they want a war. And if they try hard enough, eventually they're going to get one.

            As for Baby P, I assume the people responsible are headed to trial for their crimes? Thus Britain is policing it's own even though the example you chose isn't even roughly the same situation.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by the_womble ( 580291 )


              By that logic the attacks on Iraqi Christians by Islamic fundamentalists are justified, because they are at war with the (supposedly) Christian US.

              Also, countries with conflicts with ethnic minorities are justified in treating all members of a minority as enemies because some have taken arms against the state?

              The good bit is that we can now hold all Americans responsible for George Bush's actions.....

          • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

            by ObsessiveMathsFreak ( 773371 ) <obsessivemathsfreak@@@eircom...net> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:54AM (#26146037) Homepage Journal

            The moderates usually have no authority over the extremists, so how should they police them?

            Leave the group.

            If the organization or group you are in is being lead in a direction you are opposed to and you have no say in that course, then you should leave. To stay is to explicitly condone the actions of the leadership. The best contemporary example of this in the context of religious groups is in fact the "Mormon" Church of Latter Day Saints, which has seen many followers leave [news10.net] because of the way in which it conducted itself during the Proposition 8 vote.

            Here was a church leadership which injected its organization voluminously and inappropriately into a contemporary political issue. They turned an institution of private religious belief into public political party. Their church is now feeling the backlash from this, and attempting to take off their political cap as quickly as they put it on is simply not possible.

            By staying in their church, Mormons explicitly endorse their churches actions and stances. Ostensibly on the issue of gay marriage, but more importantly on the long term decision that the LDS church can and will inject itself and its considerable demographic and monetary clout directly and voluminously into any political debate that takes its fancy. Many european states, learning from experience, outrightly ban such behavior, but in the US, obviously things are different.

            You can stay and support the actions of your church leaders, or you can leave. There are other sects, and other interpretations. The same goes for Muslims, particularly those in western countries, who frequent mosques with radical imams. Protestants break off and form new churches all the time [nytimes.com]. Even catholics can pick other pulpits if they take exception to their current priest. Staying to avoid social difficulty, or pretending that your presence is not being used to support your church leader's views and actions, are not valid excuses. Staying to "change from within" is only valid if you are actively doing so, otherwise it too is an excuse.

            People can and should leave a church if that church's actions or beliefs go against their own principles. To stay is to abandon those principles.

        • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

          by HungryHobo ( 1314109 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:11AM (#26145353)

          Ya but he mentioned nothing of the chance of rape at the hands of fundamentalist christians.
          Since catholic priests love the rape, or so the media coverage would tell us.
          How much video footage of muslims sitting at home reading the paper are you shown? there's a billion of them out there but all you ever see is are the rabble rousers and nutcases.
          Imagine if all they ever saw of america on their TV shows was Westboro Baptist Church protests,KKK protests and rednecks talking about how they'd love to shoot all dem damn muslums and George Bush. They might decide that Americans were all violent fundamentalist nutcases. And they'd be exactly as right as you are.

        • Re:wow (Score:5, Insightful)

          by sjames ( 1099 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:31AM (#26145653) Homepage Journal

          Like it or not, Muslims are more likely to kill in response to perceived offenses against their religion, and his post makes light of that fact.

          It's not really intrinsic to Islam. It just happens that the surrounding culture of the area most strongly associated with Islam is more likely to kill over any sort of slight. Muslims who grew up in other surrounding cultures are MUCH more moderate as a whole. My personal experience is that Muslims who grew up in western culture are much LESS likely to attempt to impose their religious beliefs on others than fundamentalist Christians are.

          AS for 'policing their own', what in the world is an American Muslim family supposed to do about the Taliban? Bombard them with greeting cards from the 'lighten up collection'?

    • Re:wow (Score:5, Funny)

      by aaron alderman ( 1136207 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:27AM (#26144765) Homepage
      1. Insult the religious.
      2. Insult programmers.
      3. ????
      4. Prophet!
    • Re:wow (Score:5, Funny)

      by jkiller ( 1030766 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:45AM (#26145033)
      This is all wrong. COBOL is like Judaism... it controls most of the world's money.
    • Re:wow (Score:4, Insightful)

      by troon ( 724114 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:00AM (#26145183)
      Seconded. I'm a Christian, a bit closer to Java than PHP, and am used to getting a bit of a slapping from ignorami spouting bigoted claptrap only lightly based on truth (yeah, and I know that's what most of you lot think of us...). This article made me smile: very clever, knowledgable of the nuances of the different faiths, and no unfounded digs at any of the (major) ones.
    • Re:wow (Score:5, Funny)

      by jonaskoelker ( 922170 ) <jonaskoelker@ya[ ].com ['hoo' in gap]> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:18AM (#26145445)

      Visual Basic would be Satanism - Except that you don't REALLY need to sell your soul to be a Satanist...

      Speaking as the dark lord of hell, I'm offended by the insinuation that I want to possess the souls of VB "programmers"!

    • Re:wow (Score:5, Informative)

      by Otter ( 3800 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:46AM (#26145905) Journal
      The second sentence is untrue (uh, yes, you can convert to Judaism), at which point I gave up.
  • What do you mean "If"?! As a young man, I was saved by the one true C.
  • by earthforce_1 ( 454968 ) <earthforce_1@ya[ ].com ['hoo' in gap]> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:53AM (#26144375) Journal

    Then Linus must have joined Salman Rushdie in hiding after this rant:
    http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.comp.version-control.git/57643/focus=57918 [gmane.org]

  • by MouseR ( 3264 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:57AM (#26144411) Homepage

    Objective-C isn't in the list. And that makes me happy.

  • LOLCode (Score:5, Funny)

    by Andr T. ( 1006215 ) <andretaff@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:59AM (#26144447)

    LOLCODE would be Pastafarianism - An esoteric, Internet-born belief that nobody really takes seriously, despite all the efforts to develop and spread it.

    WHAT??? What do you mean no one takes Pastafarianism seriously?? Die, infidel!

  • by TheDarkMaster ( 1292526 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @09:59AM (#26144449)
    I am a fundamentalist crhistian (java) AND a satanist (visual basic)? LOL!

    I am the incarnated paradox :)
  • by Kupfernigk ( 1190345 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:02AM (#26144481)
    I think TFA suffers from the author not knowing an awful lot about the different religions.


    • Java is more like Episcopalianism - it's based ultimately on C (Judaism) but rejects some of the more traditional ideas and allows for a wide range of interpretations.
    • Erlang is like Zen - initially hard to understand but based around some apparently simple but deep concepts. And yes, I have studied Zen, you insensitive clod!
    • C# is Mormonism - a kind of parallel reality to the mainstream Episcopalianism that is Java, and it costs more to join.
    • C++ is fundamentalist Christianity - at first sight it looks fine but you have to believe increasingly strange things the more you get sucked into it, and it can just blow up in your face without warning.
    • And COBOL is Islam - it has been around a long time, it is still widely believed in, it can be a bit narrow but for many of its believers it works extremely well.
  • by jollyreaper ( 513215 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:07AM (#26144527)

    Then we could excommunicate people for breaking coding conventions and burn them at the stake for buffer overflows. Of course, this would also mean we'd need altars to Gates and Torvalds in the server room, would have to burn the right incenses and make appropriate obeisances to ward off crashes. Of course, when the crashes happen anyway, we could then have the debate over whether the religion was false or if we simply weren't observing it strictly enough and decide to throw a virgin off the roof and see if things improve. (cue jokes about the likeliest department to find virgins in.) You know, it would be kind of cool to have a giant computing pyramid atop which is the altar we tear out the beating hearts of living sacrifices.

    • by paulsnx2 ( 453081 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:36AM (#26144897)

      The 10 commandments of coding conventions

      1) Thou shalt not place the Left Curly Brace on a line of its own; this shows disrespect to thy Fathers and thy Mothers who only had 80 columns and 24 lines in days of old
      2) Thou shalt not use the GoTo, for such disrespects the Prophet of Programming Dijkstra,
      3) Thou shalt comment thy code, and provide great detail about the workings of thy mind when thou does first write thy method. And thou shalt revisit and revise thy comments only in the earliest hours of the morning prior to thy code review.
      4) Honor thy Sun and thy Java that your days may be long upon the Virtual Machine where thy code livith.
      5) Thou shalt Compile before checking in.
      6) Thou shalt Run thy code at least once before shipping.
      7) Thou shalt Test at least one Browser against thy Server's code, and thy backup Server's code, and thy Neighbor's Server's code.
      8) Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's operating system unless thy neighbor runs Linux; If ye cast your eye upon thy neighbor's Windows Server, and covet it in thy heart, thy staff shall take thee into thy parking lot and stone thee with mice until the demon of stupidity leaveth thee
      9) Thou shalt not make libraries of other gods such as C# or Perl. These are an abomination before thy God.
      10) Once thou hast compiled thy code, generated thy Java Doc, Reviewed thy code with the elders of thy people, Deployed thy code upon thy server, and tested thy code upon the Browser of thy God (Firefox 3.0), and thy customer doth stumble upon thy bug, thou shalt blame thy customer with thy mouth, and curse his existence, for thou hath commented, placed thy braces properly, indented with four spaces (and not eight as do the godless), hath capped thy constants, hath lowercased thy methods, and hath passed all thy JUnit tests..... It is the truth of God that if yee hath done all these things, thy customer must be at fault.

  • by spottedkangaroo ( 451692 ) * on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:10AM (#26144563) Homepage

    I was really into the article until I got to that comment. I really like python, but I find it's anything but restrictive. It seems like there's exactly one way to do things in python and if you deviate at all the other python coders will get insanely angry with you.

    I find it more restrictive than java. Elegant, but extremely restrictive. It makes me feel boxed in. I prefer languages where you can do things in various different ways depending on your mood and temperament.

    Again, I like python very much, but it's not "unrestrictive." That's just silly.

    • by quarterbuck ( 1268694 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:18AM (#26144663)
      It is unrestrictive not in the simple keywords and functions sense, but in the sense of object oriented design.
      In Java it is next to impossible to write a "Hello World" program without tripping over object oriented design. In python don't really need to create a ObjectFactory to create little widget objects if you don't feel like it etc.
      This leaves the user unrestricted when it comes to program design (though python slightly does nudge you in the rightish direction with the way the language is developing).
  • BASIC (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SoundGuyNoise ( 864550 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:14AM (#26144595) Homepage
    BASIC is like any Sunday School. It give you a base to start out with. Might not be on the ball with the full tenets of a religion, simplified for a new audience, but it points in the direction for deeper philosophical research.
  • Perl (Score:3, Funny)

    by Maclir ( 33773 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:18AM (#26144657) Journal

    Perl would be Voodoo - An incomprehensible series of arcane incantations that involve the blood of goats and permanently corrupt your soul.

    Actually, the incantations involve the blood of camels.

  • by lxs ( 131946 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @10:44AM (#26145017)
    After working with it for 48 hours I woke up in the middle of the night, convinced that computer was programming me.
  • One small quibble... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rickb928 ( 945187 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:14AM (#26145407) Homepage Journal

    "COBOL would be Ancient Paganism - There was once a time when it ruled over a vast region and was important, but nowadays it's almost dead, for the good of us all. Although many were scarred by the rituals demanded by its deities, there are some who insist on keeping it alive even today."

    COBOL is more likely Freemasonry - While claiming to be born before C and Java(and we ask, 'this is a hard teaching!'), it espouses concepts much more ancient, and as yet not disproven in utility. It works unseen, underpinning most of society, gains little public respect (indeed scorn and distrust), and occasionally becomes noticable, usually in crisis not entirely of its own making. Adherents are dying off, but fear not; COBOL still fills a need, and while many Post-Modern competitors rise and fall, COBOL lives on, doing whatever it does, quietly, efficiently, daring all pretenders to replace it. Many have indeed succumbed. Be wary of annoying this breed. They have access to all your bases.

  • by JoeMerchant ( 803320 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:23AM (#26145495)
    Taoism: Shit happens.
    Confucianism: Confucius say, "Shit happens."
    Buddhism: If shit happens, it isn't really shit.
    Zen Buddhism: Shit is, and is not.
    Zen Buddhism #2: What is the sound of shit happening?
    Hinduism: This shit has happened before.
    Islam: If shit happens, it is the will of Allah.
    Islam #2: If shit happens, kill the person responsible.
    Islam #3: If shit happens, blame Israel.
    Catholicism: If shit happens, you deserve it.
    Protestantism: Let shit happen to someone else.
    Presbyterian: This shit was bound to happen.
    Episcopalian: It's not so bad if shit happens, as long as you serve the right wine with it.
    Methodist: It's not so bad if shit happens, as long as you serve grape juice with it.
    Congregationalist: Shit that happens to one person is just as good as shit that happens to another.
    Unitarian: Shit that happens to one person is just as bad as shit that happens to another.
    Lutheran: If shit happens, don't talk about it.
    Fundamentalism: If shit happens, you will go to hell, unless you are born again. (Amen!)
    Fundamentalism #2: If shit happens to a televangelist, it's okay.
    Fundamentalism #3: Shit must be born again.
    Judaism: Why does this shit always happen to us?
    Calvinism: Shit happens because you don't work.
    Seventh Day Adventism: No shit shall happen on Saturday.
    Creationism: God made all shit.
    Secular Humanism: Shit evolves.
    Christian Science: When shit happens, don't call a doctor - pray!
    Christian Science #2: Shit happening is all in your mind.
    Unitarianism: Come let us reason together about this shit.
    Quakers: Let us not fight over this shit.
    Utopianism: This shit does not stink.
    Capitalism: That's MY shit.
    Communism: It's everybody's shit.
    Feminism: Men are shit.
    Chauvinism: We may be shit, but you can't live without us...
    Commercialism: Let's package this shit.
    Impressionism: From a distance, shit looks like a garden.
    Idolism: Let's bronze this shit.
    Existentialism: Shit doesn't happen; shit IS.
    Existentialism #2: What is shit, anyway?
    Stoicism: This shit is good for me.
    Hedonism: There is nothing like a good shit happening!
    Mormonism: God sent us this shit.
    Mormonism #2: This shit is going to happen again.
    Wiccan: An it harm none, let shit happen.
    Scientology: If shit happens, see "Dianetics", p.157.
    Jehovah's Witnesses: Knock Knock Shit happens.
    Jehovah's Witnesses #2: May we have a moment of your time to show you some of our shit?
    Jehovah's Witnesses #3: Shit has been prophesied and is imminent; only the righteous shall survive its happening.
    Moonies: Only really happy shit happens.
    Hare Krishna: Shit happens, rama rama.
    Rastafarianism: Let's smoke this shit!
    Zoroastrianism: Shit happens half on the time.
    Church of SubGenius: BoB shits.
    Practical: Deal with shit one day at a time.
    Agnostic: Shit might have happened; then again, maybe not.
    Agnostic #2: Did someone shit?
    Agnostic #3: What is this shit?
    Satanism: SNEPPAH TIHS.
    Atheism: What shit?
    Atheism #2: I can't believe this shit!
    Nihilism: No shit.
  • by Jason Levine ( 196982 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @11:41AM (#26145807) Homepage

    The article's author says about Judaism:

    The catch is, you can't convert into it - you're either into it from the start, or you will think that it's insanity.

    This isn't true, however. You can convert into Judaism, we just purposefully make it difficult to do so. The custom is that you need to turn the person away 3 times. Only after they come back after the third turn-away can they begin the process to convert. This helps ensure that people don't take conversion to Judaism lightly. The conversion itself is mainly classes to get up to speed on the religious laws and then a dunk in a mikvah (a kind of ritual pool). Males have an extra obstacle - circumcision. And don't think that hospital-administered one will get you out of it. In the case of an already circumcised male convert, a drop of blood is still taken (as a sort of token religious circumcision). The end result is that converts are actually more likely to be religious than natural-born Jews and aren't likely to convert away from Judaism on a whim.

  • by Requiem18th ( 742389 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @01:01PM (#26147261)

    It's blasphemous!

  • Atheism... (Score:4, Funny)

    by PPH ( 736903 ) on Wednesday December 17, 2008 @01:18PM (#26147605)
    ..is Whitespace [wikipedia.org].

God made the integers; all else is the work of Man. -- Kronecker