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Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

Posted on

What was the most over-hyped software movement?

Top comments (136)

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lukewestby profile image
Luke Westby

Blockchain!!!!

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dfockler profile image
Dan Fockler

It's like almost no one really understood that you don't need blockchain if you have a trusted network, which most companies do. So they are basically implementing distributed databases which they probably are already using in some form once we ditched mainframes.

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stefandorresteijn profile image
Stefan Dorresteijn

Yeah, Blockchain is only useful when decentralization is of utmost importance. It's great for that though.

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mortoray profile image
edA‑qa mort‑ora‑y

Yet, tech like blockchain has amazing potential to reduce corruption and improve governance for countries and municipalities. It's too bad the hype is overshadowing this amazing ability.

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scottishross profile image
Ross Henderson

I've always wondered why governments don't use it in an online voting system. You could register your IP address up with something that identifies you in the gov database and use it for online voting.

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damian profile image
damian

Relevent xkcd

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jmfayard profile image
Jean-Michel Fayard 🇫🇷🇩🇪🇬🇧🇪🇸🇨🇴 • Edited on

That rings true, but also there is the simple fact that online voting solves a non-existing problem.

Paper based voting is much simpler and works.

If it doesn't work in the US, do it like in the countries where it works, problem solved.

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maxart2501 profile image
Massimo Artizzu

I don't know if I'm interpreting "movement" correctly, but I remember when NoSQL was super-hyped, then we realized that good ol' relational databases were still the best for most of the tasks.

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cubiclebuddha profile image
Cubicle Buddha

8 years of MongoDB development here and I can confidently say that I will never recommend NoSQL for another professional project.

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thomasjunkos profile image
Thomas Junkツ

Nowadays, we are putting our JSON into relational databases :D
SCNR

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cubiclebuddha profile image
Cubicle Buddha • Edited on

Oh I'm with you. If I ever need to save unstructured data, I would just use JSONB inside of PostGres. Now I'm a type-safety kind of guy, so I'm not sure I ever would do that. But if I found a good use case, PostGres' JSONB is the tech I would use instead of MongoDb.

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thomasjunkos profile image
Thomas Junkツ

If you tell nobody, I am using postgres too 😉

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n8chz profile image
Lorraine Lee

How is the name of that product supposed to be pronounced? Why is there only one S if it is both Postgres and SQL? FWIW I call it Post-GRE-SQL because somehow it seems "graduate level."

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

Originally the product was called "Postgres" (as Post Ingres, a DB at the time), then they joined the word SQL to make it clear it was a relational DB.

I think "POST-GRES-QL" is the correct one, like if it was "Postgres query language"

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elasticrash profile image
Stefanos Kouroupis

After two years of using dynamodb I would gladly slap the team that came up with it. Especially the throttling mechanism

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

Is it bad?

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elasticrash profile image
Stefanos Kouroupis

Depends your traffic profile and pockets. If your traffic follows a nice and constant increase/decrease pattern it's fine. If you have huge sudden spikes like we do...the only option is to turn it to on demand charging ...which is slightly more expensive but you don't have all the problems that come with bursting capacity, throttling and scaling.

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern

I wasted a lot of time fretting about databases at that point.

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tvanantwerp profile image
Tom VanAntwerp

Blockchain: the world's least-efficient linked list!

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antonholmberg profile image
Anton Holmberg

These ones I would say:

  • IoT
  • Blockchain
  • Machine Learning

They all have the potential to be great but I fell like they are all really early in their development and a lot of people are just throwing it at problems where they really don't fit.

Also Scrum...

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kenbellows profile image
Ken Bellows

Blockchain, sure. Scrum... arguably, I guess, though I still use it. I disagree about IoT; afaik it's still huge, and more and more smart home devices are being produced every year and seem to be doing well (though I haven't done market research or anything).

But seriously, machine learning? The biggest, most successful field of AI research and development of the last like 50 years? I can't agree there. ML is powering every major search engine, it's used for photo and video analysis for all sorts of applications from social media to law enforcement and government intelligence, it's used for every sort of mass data analysis from advertising to stock markets to demographics research, and it's invaluable to the hard sciences where quickly identifying trends in huge datasets (think about trying to manually examine astronomical datasets, the output from Large Hadron Collider experiements, or even animal migration patterns with hundreds of thousands of data points).

I'm really not trying to be a jerk and go all "someone is wrong on the internet" or anything, I'm honestly very curious: what do you see as the failures of machine learning? Sure, there have been misfires and misapplications, just like any tech, but my god, it's been absolutely exploding as a field of both CS research and practical application for literally half a century

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antonholmberg profile image
Anton Holmberg

I might interpreting over-hyped in a different way than you are then. By over-hyped I don't really mean that something is bad. Machine Learning is awesome and has solved a lot of problems that were previously, dare i say, unsolvable.

What I mean with over-hyped is that it, in many ways, have started to be used as a buzzword. It is a thing that startups instantly put in their sales pitch even though they might use it in the smallest and least significant part of their actual service. Even worse is when ML is crammed in to a project that doesn't really warrant for it. Working for an agency I have even had clients saying "We want to solve this using machine learning" when there are solutions that would have done the work better.

This of course does not mean that machine learning is bad or has failed. It just means that it is hyped and sometimes misunderstood by a lot of people working in the industry.

What I am saying is not

"over-hyped = Bad"

but rather

"over-hyped = People sometimes use it only because there is hype around it".

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nektro profile image
Meghan (she/her)

Oh I totally agree with the first impretation though. I think Machine Learning is absolutely terrible. Even if we solve the issues around climate change, AI research will inevitable bring the end of humanity and needs to be stopped.

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kenbellows profile image
Ken Bellows

Do you mean because of strong AI and the rise of the machines, or privacy concerns, or something else? I probably agree with all of your concerns at least somewhat, but even if we avoid the research heading in those directions, ML is still fundamentally important. ML is a very field that covers everything from data compression algorithms to cyber security to, as I mentioned, interpretation of scientific datasets. We would honestly never have progressed past the tech of the 70s without ML

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angelarae63 profile image
Angela Whisnant

I thought scrum was an agile thing. Is it a software?

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antonholmberg profile image
Anton Holmberg

It's sort of a movement in, but not exclusive to, the software industry

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georgecoldham profile image
George

Also Scrum...

Scrum is one of them things that works amazingly... but only if done really well.

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kungtotte profile image
Thomas Landin

Which means it's a terrible idea for a team organisation process.

You can't base your organisation on everyone performing the process to perfection all the time, you have to account for the fact that humans are performing it.

The best process is one that always produces the desired result regardless of the proficiency with which you execute it.

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antonholmberg profile image
Anton Holmberg

But do you think such a process exists? I feel that as soon as you add the human factor you also need to have a more human approach to team organization.

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cubiclebuddha profile image
Cubicle Buddha

That's why it's best to focus on the Agile values instead of the processes.

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antonholmberg profile image
Anton Holmberg

Agree. I just feel that management tend to just throw it in to a project as the silver bullet and then wonder why all of these sprint planning meeting haven't gotten us to write more code.

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mandaputtra profile image
Manda Putra

Yeah scrum, the management at scale 😂

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yaser profile image
Yaser Al-Najjar

React

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anpos231 profile image
anpos231

True, React is great but not THAT great.

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firozansari profile image
Firoz Ansari

SPA!

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maxart2501 profile image
Massimo Artizzu

IMO SPAs make a lot of sense. It's the concept of dealing with the view on the client side, rather than on the server. The server should just send data, not the view itself.
(Yes, all of this is nuanced by server-side rendering and so on, but still.)

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thermatix profile image
Martin Becker

The reason I like this mentality is it means you can build a single API that then gets used across everything, any updates or changes an everything gets access to it and it also means easier to maintain as well.

Combine that with a tool like React-Native and you have an almost build once run everywhere product.

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jhuebel profile image
Jason Huebel

I actually agree strongly with this.

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thomasjunkos profile image
Thomas Junkツ

Is it trolling, if I say OOP?

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drewknab profile image
Drew Knab

Nah, OOP deserves it.

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codemouse92 profile image
Jason C. McDonald • Edited on

It's hard to pick just one! Candidates...

  • Neural networks,
  • Blockchain (@lukewestby called it first!),
  • Internet of Things,
  • AI/machine learning,
  • Scroll-wheel hijacking on Javascript websites...
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david_j_eddy profile image
David J Eddy

"...Scroll-wheel hijacking on Javascript websites..."

One of those things we should have asked 'just because we can, should we?'

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codemouse92 profile image
Jason C. McDonald • Edited on

Apropos to the last twenty years of web development, I might add.

And people mock me for creating content-oriented sites without all the bells and whistles. "You should make it modern-looking."

criticism >> /dev/null

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dfockler profile image
Dan Fockler

I'd say that Neural Networks and AI/ML have made a huge impact in the large companies that have the expertise to implement them correctly, i.e. Google, Facebook, Amazon. But for the general purpose programmers they haven't at all.

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elmuerte profile image
Michiel Hendriks • Edited on

Cloud.
It's just the time-share computing from the 60s.

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jdsteinhauser profile image
Jason Steinhauser

The eternal mainframe...

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mshel profile image
MikhailShel

I'd say microservices. You go anywhere and they'll tell you "we are splitting our monolith into microservices"... A lot of the times it ending up a bunch of smaller monoliths.

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katafrakt profile image
Paweł Świątkowski

Bunch of smaller monoliths is still far better (usually) than one huge monolith. At least you need to set some boundaries.

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mshel profile image
MikhailShel • Edited on

if its the same team building them as the original one it will end up been a bunch of huge monoliths(arrgh here we go again) that slow everything down and eventually team will come back to refactoring the original monolith. its very sad:)

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martinbean profile image
Martin Bean

That was going to be my suggestion too 😄

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val_baca profile image
Valentin Baca
  • Inheritance in OOP (Interfaces and Composition with Delegates are the better parts of OOP and yet we're still teaching the whole Dog extends Animal to newbies). The best OO code I've seen uses the least inheritance.

  • UML

  • XML

  • Thin Client vs Thick Client debate: mobile apps nuked this whole paradigm

  • Flash, ActionScript

  • AR/VR: believe me, I think it's cool but it's still just all hype for a fraction of a percent of the market (This is an area I hope I'm wrong in, but I wouldn't bet on AR/VR)

  • Domain Specific Languages: like, they're fine and useful, but 2010 hype was that they were going to Change the World

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rhymes profile image
rhymes

UML, that's a nightmare from the past :D
I remember Eclipse had a functionality that generated Java code from UML.

😅

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val_baca profile image
Valentin Baca

I recall the opposite, where coworkers would print out GIANT UML diagrams of our code for new hires and interns. Looking back it was probably just a weird flex.

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david_j_eddy profile image
David J Eddy

DSL's...uggg. I have yet to see a situation that would not be better served using an established language/markup.

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anpos231 profile image
anpos231

UML is actually very useful to visualize existing code.
But it must be done properly.

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cjbrooks12 profile image
Casey Brooks

MongoDB. Also, Coffeescript.

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drewknab profile image
Drew Knab

Coffeescript gets a pass for being the transpile gateway drug.

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n8chz profile image
Lorraine Lee

What should a coffeescripter (like me?) graduate to? Clojure?

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cjbrooks12 profile image
Casey Brooks

What should a coffeescripter (like me?) graduate to?

Typescript, probably. Like CoffeeScript, Typescript is pretty much just normal Javascript, with some extra goodies. Clojure is a completely new paradigm of programming (Lisp), and won't be as easy of a transition.

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aritdeveloper profile image
Arit Developer

I second Coffeescript 🤦🏽‍♀️

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itsasine profile image
ItsASine (Kayla)

I liked Coffeescript :(

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jhuebel profile image
Jason Huebel

Most people are saying "blockchain", but I would point specifically to "cryptocurrency". It is essentially a software movement. But bitcoin and its ilk has ZERO intrinsic value. And its monetary value is based on the whims of a market that buys and sells almost nothing except speculation on it's own currency. I realize there are a few "major retailers" that accept bitcoin now, but it's an afterthought in most cases.

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ahferroin7 profile image
Austin S. Hemmelgarn

Most 'real world' currency also has zero intrinsic value. Most major currencies throughout the world only have value because the governments responsible for them say they do and most of the world population for whom it matters either agrees or just blindly trusts them.

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lukewestby profile image
Luke Westby

Sovereign currencies have value because issuing governments only accept tax payment with those currencies, and tax payment is required under penalty of prison. I’m not sure I would call that agreement or blind trust.

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anpos231 profile image
anpos231

It's the governments way of ensuring that currency has value.

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jhuebel profile image
Jason Huebel • Edited on

That's certainly true. But with cryptocurrency, you don't even have the advantage of physical currency.

I think it's fair to say that based on the amount of Bitcoin that's been stolen or extorted from individuals-- including by Bitcoin exchange operators your supposed to be able to trust-- only a fool puts any real confidence in cryptocurrencies.

So where does that put us? Only government-regulated cryptocurrency could be trusted in any realistic way. And that basically defeats one of the goals of cryptocurrency.

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kspeakman profile image
Kasey Speakman

Not to mention the gluttonous waste of energy it takes to "mine" cryptocurrency.

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jwollner5 profile image
John 'BBQ' Wollner

Rational Rose et al and the notion that every use case and corner case could be documented up front and used to generate code.

I love code generation for boilerplate, but that was a fool's errand considering the cost and complexity of the tools available at the time.

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gene profile image
Gene

BLOCKCHAIN!

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