Tim Bray on the tripod of objects, messages, and tables...
...for me, this essay brought into focus the fact that anyone who isn’t comfortable with object-oriented design, and with relational data modeling, and with wrangling XML messages; anyone not comfortable with all three, I say, just isn’t fully trained.
Well said, for developing today. But what about tomorrow? When he writes...
Lots of architects have learned, painfully, that you usually can’t magick relational rows away behind object/class abstractions. The right way to think about a database is as a set of normalized tables that are designed to be addressed with SQL strings.
...I can only suggest that we need to upgrade our languages to provide more magic.
Lisp, Smalltalk, and Python come to mind. These are the magic we have for now, but there's more to come if we stay the course. Our databases are still based on early 1980's implementation ideas. Let's keep the good concepts and upgrade the rest. Our messages are struggling with nascent infrastructure and representation issues.
Our languages (i.e. "objects"), our databases, and our messaging are all struggling to become more dynamic. As they do, they will also become more unified, or at least "unify-able".