> > to do. If I want to, say, provide a way to track meetings (like a
> > calendar function) and link them to contacts, as well as eventually
> > find a way to export contacts to Palm/PocketPC and export expense
> > items to Quicken, will Java or RealBASIC be able to support that
> > functionality?
> > Or adding a quick-entry side-program, for jotting random notes or
> > expenses down, that will streamline the process of transferring them
> > in later?
> > I guess the overall question is, since I'm starting from scratch here
> > (I don't think that Pascal is going to do me much good, right? :),
> > what will give me the most functionality with the shortest learning
> > curve?
> The problem is that your requirements are contradictory, and no one
> language fills them all. Even within a single functional system, it's
> common to see different languages used in different places. A
> reasonbly sophisticated Intranet, for example, might have a
> Java, a business logic tier made of Perl or PHP or both, a server tier
> made of Java, and a persistence tier made of "Bob" knows what, because
> you bought it from Oracle.
> Here, what you have is not an enterprise system but one that's nearly
> as complex. You want to 1) put together user interfaces easily, 2)
> support some sort of database, as yet unspecified, and 3) provide
> interconnection, such as via a Palm conduit.
> A language that is fun to use and gives you a quick emotional bang
> for the investment of time is not going to be the same thing as one
> that you're going to use when you need to get close to the metal and
> write a Palm conduit. You're going to have to give something up
> or at least defer it until later, when you're back in the swing of things.
> Here's an offer. Pick two, but only two, from the following list of
> desirables, and I'll make suggestions:
> 1) Power and control
> 2) The ability to build applications easily
> 3) Compatibility with platforms other than OS X