Please stop reading this post, and read that one. When you are done, come on back here for my thoughts on Sten's thoughts.
OK. You read it. Here we go.
First, thanks, Sten, for being such an interesting, wise, sometimes provocative voice in our community.
Next, Sten writes:
But I can assure you that I still do meet young PL/SQL programmers, regularly, when I am at conferences and doing onsite presentations at companies.
So, young person who writes PL/SQL: do not be afraid! You are not alone! And you are super-smart to have made the choice you did. :-)
Next, Sten offers this advice to managers:
I agree that PL/SQL is a "specialized technology" - it always has been, almost by definition: it is a special-purpose database programming language, and used only within Oracle Database.
But I do think there is another really big "place" in which PL/SQL should be leveraged:
Any application built on top of Oracle Database
The bottom line is that you cannot build a fully optimized, secure and easy-to-maintain application on Oracle Database without PL/SQL. Doesn't matter if the application is for batch processing, transaction processing, or otherwise.
Sure, you can build an app without PL/SQL. But if you use the database only as a bit bucket, minimizing use of SQL and avoiding PL/SQL all-but-entirely, you will end up with an insecure mess on your hands.
I am not going to go into full "YesPLSQL" mode in this post, though. Instead, I encourage you to check out Bryn Llewellyn's Why Use PL/SQL whitepaper, and his promotion of the "Thick Database" paradigm.
So if I were a fully enlightened manager (feel free to check with my team if you'd like to find out my current status :-) ), I would have one or more specialized people on my team who know Oracle Database inside-out from a developer perspective, and can serve up clean, secure, fast APIs to underlying data and business rules.
Next, Sten offers some advice to developers:
I agree with the first point: it is, unfortunately, impractical to try to convince a developer with no immediate prospects for applying their SQL and PL/SQL knowledge to get up to speed on it.
Java because you can implement Java classes in the database to complement/extend the reach of PL/SQL.
Thanks, again, Sten, for this very interesting contribution to an important conversation in our community.