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Tom Nies

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Need Productivity? Smalltalk Is the Most Productive Programming Language

Posted on in Categories Cincom, Cincom Smalltalk

Have You Entered the Discovery Zone Yet?

We know business leaders are not just looking for product messaging from vendors. They need validation from third-party sources—someone other than the vendor—that can help them confirm that they are making the smartest choice for their programming language. Although this isn’t new to Smalltalkers, business leaders looking for help in their decision-making can look to Capers Jones of Namcook Analytics for unbiased research on the topic.

Capers Jones is a long-time expert and author of studies that compare programming languages, including productivity measures. In a recent paper, Capers Jones shows several factors that contribute to the overall value of a programming language over the full life cycle of its use. Although the study shows many types of languages combined, you will see that Smalltalk comes out on top in general-purpose programming languages and also rates very high in function points per month with fewer lines of code.

Languages Size in KLOC* Work Hours per Function Point Function Points per Month
Smalltalk 21.33 6.88 19.19
Visual Basic 26.67 7.85 16.82
Delphi 29.09 8.29 15.92
APL 32 8.82 14.97
Perl 35.56 9.46 13.95
Haskell 37.65 9.84 13.41
C# 51.2 12.31 10.72
C++ 53.33 12.7 10.4
Java 53.33 12.7 10.4
PHP 53.33 12.7 10.4
Python 53.33 12.7 10.4
Zimbu 58.18 13.58 9.72
Quick Basic 60.95 14.08 9.37

* KLOC = lines of code, which is a software metric used to measure the size of a computer program by counting the number of lines in the text of the program’s source code.

To see this paper in its entirety, click here.

As Thomas M. Nies, Chairman and CEO of Cincom Systems, Inc. says,

“High value and low cost with a rapid return on investment at low risk—you simply can’t go wrong by choosing Cincom Smalltalk.”