Friday, April 01, 2005

Why language designers' mother tongue is not English

Experts, journalists and laymen interested in Language Oriented Programming wonder why there is that few LOP researchers natively speaking in English. Look at faces of these great men - Сергей Дмитриев (Russian), prof. Ulrich Eisenecker (German), Krzysztof Czarnecki (Polish), Todd Veldhuizen (I don't really know, Swedish by the name), me (Czech) and many others. None of them uses English as his first language. Why is it so?

The answer is as simple as the English grammar. You don't have to be really gifted to figure out what is behind. Here is the explanation.

Obviously, everybody thinks in the language he/she speaks in, so no wonder that a scientist thinks in his/her native language. By comparing the English grammar with any other European language it can be easily seen that English cannot compete in complexity. Therein lies the rub! Evidently, more complex grammar scientists must learn during their childhood, more advantages they can profit from during their research. Just look at the simple English grammar and compare it with complex, irregular one of Sergey's native language or even with the fourth toughest language in Europe or look at Charles and its Hungarian with all its forms, case suffixes, moods, etc.

Basically, if someone wants to put himself up by his bootstrap in the field of LOP, he must learn Hungarian, Czech or Russian first. Pity is that there are no Chinese researchers so far. God help us!