Weblog:   More CORBA vs SOAP
Subject:   Why CORBA failed
Date:   2003-03-13 21:22:00
From:   arvedhs
Uche, the article you reference is a good one. An interesting read.

Fundamentally, the reason CORBA is not more often used is because ten percent or less of programmers can wrap their brains around it. The same goes for web services now that that got complex. The same is true for J2EE.

How many programmers, percentage-wise, do you think visit this website, or, or Slashdot, on a routine basis? We both know the answer. Not many. Ask yourself, how many of the programmers that you have worked with during your career have thorough technical libraries, have invested in career enhancement, or follow decent magazines? If the answer in _your_ case is "lots", then you ain't been in typical software companies. I get lots of blank looks when I drop casual refs to DDJ or CUJ, only a few developers I know are interested in buying (and _reading_) professional books, and so forth.

It's not a problem with CORBA at all. This may sound cynical and arrogant, but what it comes down to is there ain't too many Michi Hennings or Greg Vinoskis, nor Adam Bosworths, nor Don Box's, nor Roy Fieldings, nor Uche Ogbuji's. Most programmers don't know preorder traversal from inorder, they don't know security well enough to even know the typical exploits (like overflow), they've never heard of Scheme or Haskell or Eiffel, and they can't coherently explain the nuances of functions, closures, and how one passes information - or keeps it around.

So you expect this population to master CORBA? Hell, they can't master J2EE, SOAP or XSLT either, in my experience.

That article is an alpha-geek level article, to use Tim's coinage. Well, guess what? Most programmers aren't even geeks, period - they are just punching the clock. And that's why complicated technologies fail, and that's why the whole comparison game (like J2EE vs .NET) is essentially useless.

Again, sorry to sound off cynical.