First of all: thank you (and to all of the people working on Julia). I hope you don’t take people’s frank statements about the state of the development experience personally, as everyone understands that language stability is required before a debugger. Our worry was simply that you wouldn’t be given enough time to do it prior to a v1.0 release, and that worry has been eliminated.
For what it is worth (and from someone who really likes inspecting code in the debugger), I think any time spent getting the debugger and IDE experience better on v0.6 is time-wasted. We have lived this long without a debugger, we can make it until 1.0.
I have seen a lot of complaints about the amount of time spent loading code, how
Pkg.update() is a deal-breaker, etc. My general feeling is that many of them are missing the point. The code has to be compiled, and the fancier the metaprgramming, the fancier the more time it will take.
The question is: (1) when; and (2) what visual feedback do users get when they are doing
using... Those are psychological issues, or questions of when to precompile, that can be handled in the alpha and beta phase of the release. My general feeling is: you can take as much time as you want with a
Pkg.update() and JuliaPro installation as long as you spew out a lot of nonsensical filenames to let people know it is working. If you just precompile as much as possible then, so that
using is fast afterwards, then people can walk away from their computers for 15 minutes each time. Matlab takes a good half-hour to install, and stata takes a huge amount of time each time it updates. But people are visually/mentally prepared for both.
But mostly: thanks again to you and everyone else for doing such hard and generally thankless work, with a bunch of free-riders like me who mostly seem like ingrates. Happy holidays.