Greenspun’s tenth rule of programming states: Any sufficiently complicated C or Fortran program contains an ad hoc, informally-specified, bug-ridden, slow implementation of half of Common Lisp. Although I can’t say definitively what Philip Greenspun intended when he said it, but it’s always spoken to me since I first heard it whenever it was many years ago: if your program (or software system) is going to get to a sufficient size, it’s inevitable that you or someone who is using it will want to automate or extend that program in some language other than that in which it was implemented. Most folks will choose to roll their own, winding up with some sort of half-baked even if Turing-complete kludge, that works kinda sorta. However, it would be far better to start out with something that is a first-class programming language or system and use that to extend the system – or better yet implement substantial portions of that application in that language, blurring the distinction between implementation and extension language.
Archive for October, 2015
Our customers (over 2,000 organizations around the world…and growing every day) overwhelmingly use ArcGIS as their enterprise GIS platform. And they consistently tell us that one of the most powerful enhancements to ArcGIS for Server® was the introduction of ArcPy®. Based on Python, ArcPy helps our customers with both rapid prototyping and large enterprise applications. It makes it super easy for ArcGIS developers to implement map automation and expose ArcGIS functions as dynamic web services to licensed applications. ArcGIS users get on-demand access to updated maps and geospatial data.
Our customers also tell us that what they love most about TerraGo is we give them the ability to share their most important ArcGIS maps and data with the much (MUCH) larger non-GIS user community. And this makes their work more relevant, more valuable and more available to more people in the organization. With TerraGo GeoPDF, non-GIS users can access rich ArcGIS data and use lightweight GIS tools (this means they can do cool things you normally can only do in ArcGIS like turning layers on/off, taking measurements, searching and updating feature attributes, “redline-ing” maps, inserting hyperlinks and much more). And they can do all that with the free Adobe Reader and free TerraGo Toolbar. No specialized software needed. No license required. No training necessary. And they can take it all offline. No network. No problem.