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…like a shark is made to hunt prey.

As product manager for ABAP I often had to explain the capabilities of ABAP to groups of developers used to other development languages and environments. While ABAP is an extremely productive environment for large scale business applications, it has – face it – also its strange sides. Sometimes I had a hard time to explain why a special clumsy looking element in its syntax is in fact a powerful concept born out of the need to fullfill tasks whithout some of the largest companies in the world could not run their businesses.
Often I struggled to find an analogy like “tools for professional carpenters usually don’t look as sexy as those made for do-it-yourselfers but are much more powerful”. Pretty lame, right?

But now I read in SDN member Martin Ceronio’s own blog series: Why I like ABAP an analogy I really like:
“Not only that, but the ABAP language is made to deal with business data like a shark is made to hunt prey.”
Read and enjoy Martinn’s excellent blog at

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  • Hi Dirk –

    In one of my very first blogs here:

    Using SETNODE/LEAF to Circumvent ReportWriter

    I tried to convey my delight in realizing that hashed itabs permitted me to write ABAP that would allow me to chase “control-break” subtotals up ANY ARBITRARY ordered tree defined by an SAP “report set” – even one whose subsets had leaf orphans as well as lower-level subsets.

    But more generally, I think that “hashed itabs” (and the amount of memory that SAP makes available to an ABAP program) is what makes ABAP what it is.

    Of course, I’m biased here because I once asked the only true programming gury I ever knew how he managed to get his bio-informatic Perl programs to run so fast, and he said: “Dave – let me hash what I need to hash and give me enough memory to hash it, and I can do anything orders of magntitude faster than most people think possible …”