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Why Johnny Can't Code and How That Can Change

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the get-your-learn-on dept.

Education 527

snydeq writes "Fatal Exception's Neil McAllister discusses why schools are having a hard time engaging young minds in computer science — and what the Scalable Game Design program in Colorado is doing to try to change that. 'Repenning's program avoids this disheartening cycle in three important ways. First, it deemphasizes programming while still encouraging students to develop the logical thinking skills they'll need for more advanced studies. Second, it engages students by encouraging them to be creative and solve their own problems, rather than just repeating exercises dictated by their instructor. Third, and perhaps most important, students are rewarded for their efforts with an actual, concrete result they can relate to: a game.'"

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527 comments

Its not the icky? (-1, Offtopic)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541832)

I was certain it was sticky icky.

Re:Its not the icky? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541918)

Normal people aren't clever enough to program, just like normal people aren't clever enough to use Linux (hence it's low market share). If kids aren't interested in programming, its because they aren't clever enough and don't have the spark - in which case we can just let them join the rest of the hurd and do mundane 9-5 job for the masses, its all they can imagine doing anyway.

Re:Its not the icky? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542220)

You'll be disappointed to hear that there are a lot of "average" or "normal" people writing code in the industry. You're not an exceptional snowflake because you can write code. People don't use Linux because there's no incentive to move - Windows is a pain in the ass for anybody who wants customizability and programmability, but well supported and relatively easy to use for the average consumer. Linux is a pain in the ass with uneven support and uneven ease of use. That's a step backwards for people who aren't predisposed to spending hours dicking around with their computers and learning how to program.

Re:Its not the icky? (4, Insightful)

Moryath (553296) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542240)

just like normal people aren't clever enough to use Linux (hence it's low market share)

Uhm... try that one again.
Most people don't use Linux because:
- The support for it is limited to forums where you never get actual help, but instead a bunch of ass-hats who shout back "RTFM LAMZOR" and similar insults at you. If you write in to a bug report forum or a feature request to some bit of software, someone screaming "the beauty of it is its linux so you can fix it yourself so go fix it yourself and post the fix noob" is not comforting or likely to make you stick around.

- Most of the programs they are looking to run, don't run on Linux (games industry, sadly, used to be a lot better but has backslid over the years considerably).

- The "open source alternatives" to many of the programs they run, have problems with shifting crap around on them [eweek.com] for poorly documented reasons.

- You don't just "switch to linux." You have to pick one of a gazillion discordant distros, or else fuck around trying out every goddamn one for six months to settle on the one you like and HOPE that it remains updated and supported thereafter. And that they don't fuck with you in the next release, like Ubuntu just did forcing this crap "Unity" interface. And that the architecture for your particular distro isn't rewritten in some bizarre-ass fucking arcane way that causes your particular hardware to break on the "standard linux driver"... presuming one even exists.

I won't say that there aren't very intelligent people using Linux - there obviously are. But it has become very obvious to me over the past 15 years that the people programming Linux, the people designing interfaces for Linux, and the people evangelizing Linux, have absolutely no goddamn fucking clue what a normal desktop user wants, needs, or what will appeal to same. I refer you to this insightful post [wordpress.com] from someone who also has spent plenty of time with Linux as well.

Re:Its not the icky? (2)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542318)

While I hate to jump to the defense of the masses, this is ridiculous. Normal people are certainly "clever enough" to use Linux. Lots of people on here, I'm sure, have wives or parents who use Linux; my wife does. It's no harder than using Windows, and in a lot of ways is quite a bit easier. Of course, as with the others with Linux-using relatives, I have to be the IT support person, but that's no different from Windows for most people: they outsource their IT support to either their kid, their nephew, or Geek Squad (I see them driving to peoples' homes in subdivisions here all the time) or some other "computer repair" business. Luckily, Linux doesn't have problems nearly as much as Windows, but things happen sometimes, or they need help finding a certain application to do something.

Now granted, these Linux users aren't working at the command line, writing bash or Perl scripts, and certainly not full-blown C++ applications, nor are they compiling their own kernel. But they're still using Linux, even if all they do is use Firefox and OpenOffice/LibreOffice.

As for kids doing programming, you're half right. It's not that they aren't clever enough: most programming really isn't that hard, and anyone with half a brain who applies themselves can write simple programs in Java or Perl or Python or whatever if they really want to. But just like doing automotive repair work or woodworking, you have to want to do it, and take time to learn it. Most people aren't interested, and would rather take their car to a mechanic, buy their furniture pre-made (even if it is shitty particle board with fake-looking veneer), or buy a pre-made application or hire someone to do something custom (or just do without).

Just like other professions, programming takes a lot of time to learn and master, and even more time to keep up with because it's constantly changing (e.g., 5 years ago Perl was still pretty popular, but these days everyone seems to be using Python for that stuff now, and only the diehard Perl fans still use it; C++ just released a totally new revision with all kinds of changes). The big question is: why is there SO much of a push by educators to get kids to take up programming? Why not push them to take up auto mechanics, so they can fix their own cars and save money? Why not push them to learn woodworking, which they used to do decades ago in schools? Why not push them to learn about law, since we can never have enough lawyers (sarc.)? It's probably because there's a bunch of tech companies in this country that want a larger pool of workers so they can pay less. The worst part is that they're trying to get these poor kids interested in programming games. Everyone here should know by know how bad the working conditions are at EA and the other game makers, because they rely on a constant stream of bright-eyed college grads who are all excited by being a "games programmer" that they can take advantage of and overwork until they're totally burned out; it's absolutely the worst part of the software field. I'm sure they never tell these schoolkids about this.

Re:Its not the icky? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542534)

Normal people aren't patient enough to program, just like normal people aren't masochistic enough to use Linux.

There, FTFY.

Programmer vs Computer Scientist (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541868)

We need a lot of programmers (2 year tech degree) and a few computer scientists (4 year degree and beyond).

A "good" programmer just needs to be able to hit the write keys to implement someone else's design. That's why we hire the young kids willing to do the job for the least amount of money. Old programmers are future Borders employees.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (1)

specialguy92 (1974828) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541928)

Future Borders employees in that they will be coding the database software that Borders uses in it's thousands of stores worldwide.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (1)

Moryath (553296) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542286)

Didn't you hear? Borders and B&N won't exist in 10 years once EBooks and E-Readers take over.

Develop a home market for IT & CS (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541992)

How about just making it possible to not require a degree? Combine that with a required preference for US citizens - linked to the long-term and short term unemployment rates - and allow ourselves to redevelop our home market.

It might be painful for business, but getting obstacles out of the way for workers is as valid as removing obstacles for business.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (1)

SirGeek (120712) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542010)

Yeah. Good luck with that. Companies need people who aren't "blind" programming. The will always need good "computer scientists" who can look at a design and see the defects before any coding is done to save the company $$$ and time getting to market.

They'll also need people who can LOOK at the code from the kids and make sure that whet they're writing is actually, I don't know... FUNCTIONAL ?

Too many companies are short sighted in their hiring/retention practices and forget that people with experience have just that, EXPERIENCE. They're used to looking at a problem and seeing solutions (or at least seeing the problems and working around them).

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542376)

The will always need good "computer scientists" who can look at a design and see the defects before any coding is done to save the company $$$ and time getting to market.

No they don't. Have you seen the quality of commercial software these days? Especially "enterprise" software? It costs a fortune and is total crap. Yet the companies that make it make money hand over fist from their business customers. What do they need good computer scientists for? If they're making this much money from clueless customers with crap code, then I doubt they'll get much return on their investment by hiring better (and more expensive) people to do it better.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542028)

A "good" programmer just needs to be able to hit the write keys to implement someone else's design.

My keyboard doesn't seem to have "write" keys. Do you use some nonstandard keyboard? Apparently "programmers" should take some basic English classes too.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (5, Insightful)

siride (974284) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542088)

The poster made a mistake because of a homophone. Before you assume that he doesn't know the difference, consider that it may just be an honest mistake. I know the difference, for example, between "no" and "know", but when typing quickly, I might accidentally type the wrong one, and if I'm not careful, I won't go back and fix it. It doesn't mean I'm an idiot who doesn't know basic English. It just means I'm being careless. And for the commentary section on a second-rate news aggregator site, I don't think that's a big deal.

Re:Programmer vs Computer Scientist (1)

kmdrtako (1971832) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542222)

+1 and I'd mod you up if I had modpoints. (hmm, it's taking a much longer time to get modpoints with this account than it did with my previous account)

I've been touch typing since I took typing in high school. And I know the diff between write/right, to/too/two, your/you're, its/it's, etc.

With muscle memory and/or the lizard brain running things when I'm typing quickly, I've had plenty of instances when I thought one word but the other came out of my fingertips. This is often compounded by physiological issues with the speed at which the messages travel from brain to the different fingers and it's very common for me to type, e.g., suod instead of sudo.

Since I know this happens I make a point to check, and even so I still miss some. I wonder how many are in this message.

Offshoring. (4, Insightful)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541870)

Johnny can code, just that there's too much against Johhny to make him want to do so.

Get rid of offshoring, and Johnny will want to code.

Re:Offshoring. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541946)

lol that doesn't make ANY sense. I mean offshoring is a real issue with Johnny finding a job later...but it won't make him want to code. Even WITH offshoring Software Engineering is one of the ONLY segments of the US economy that is still hiring and has a serious shortage of qualified people.

Re:Offshoring. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542186)

If it's already going to be a long-term issue, killing offshoring would be a long-term solution. If you want to get Johnny coding, he'll appreciate that he can actually get a job.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

RazzleFrog (537054) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542268)

So tell me how you "kill" offshoring? I'm curious what you magic antidote is to prevent companies from operating in a cost-efficient manner.

Re:Offshoring. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541958)

Middle school and high school students haven't had to fret about offshoring, I doubt that's a factor...

I think the big difference is, people in the industry (even young people, shortly out of college) grew up with (at minimum, if not earlier systems) DOS based systems, Windows 3.1, IRC chat client's etc. "Back in the day" anyone interested in using their computer for something useful had to learn to do it themselves, and tinker, and become interested in expanding their ability to make their computer do what they want.

Now, before they can walk, they have 3D games, music players, Facebook and all other forms of social media. I'm not saying it's all bad, but, where is the drive to get someone young interested in computing? To them, using a computer is playing a game, or reading Facebook. Not writing a script for mIRC to scrape text for keywords and have your bot auto respond to people, because that's what used to be fun.. 10+ years ago..

Re:Offshoring. (1)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542086)

I'm not saying it's all bad, but, where is the drive to get someone young interested in computing? To them, using a computer is playing a game, or reading Facebook. Not writing a script for mIRC to scrape text for keywords and have your bot auto respond to people, because that's what used to be fun.. 10+ years ago..

We need something like a cross between Logo and the cool, but relatively simple Lightbot [armorgames.com] flash game to get kids when they're young. Teach them the basics while still being fun.

It is simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542122)

Since we are apparently in the business of making people do what we want them to do....

just make hot women want to mate with computer programmers.

That is all it will take. You will be up to your ears in computer programmers in no time.

Re:Offshoring. (1)

Americano (920576) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542312)

So...

- 3d games, music players, facebook, social media != fun.
- Writing a script for mIRC to scrape text for keywords and have your bot auto respond to people == fun.

You have a strange definition of fun, friend.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542002)

Get rid of offshoring, and Johnny will want to code.

I'm pretty sure "Johnny" isn't considering international trade relations and the resulting corporate offshoring when deciding what to do with his free time and/or study time. I certainly didn't give any kind of thought to that thing when i was a kid, and i expect the usual answers of "what do you want to be when you grow up" are based far more on what that individual finds cool than on a coldhearted analysis of future earning potential. By the time they reach middle school i expect most people are barely starting to get out of that mindset.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542134)

He is, just that he isn't paying attention in the way you might think. While we might see trade relations, he might see it in his parents losing a college-paying job from it, a relative experiencing the same, or perhaps the news.

He is brighter than you might think.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542470)

It depends on his parents. If his dad's a software engineer, he probably told little Johnny to find something else to do for work because his job was sent to India.

Modbomber didn't think of the long term. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542058)

You want Johnny to want to code, give him every advantage to get him wanting to code. He is paying attention to the long term when he's deciding where/for what he wants to go to college.

Re:Offshoring. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542082)

Offtopic??? Mods on crack again.

Re:Offshoring. (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542104)

I don't know what things are like in your market, but around here there's a lot more programmer jobs than qualified people to fill them.

Offshoring isn't exactly on my top 10 list of worries. 5-6 years ago there was (locally) a big rush to do a lot of it with development work, but a few projects later most of the companies have figured out that getting offshoring to work is a lot harder and more expensive than it first appears, and so that work is coming back.

Re:Offshoring. (4, Insightful)

Kagetsuki (1620613) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542128)

Bullshit. Jina can code just as well as Johnny if not better, and he doesn't have the elitist "I'm always right because I studied design theory for four years" attitude. That's the problem.

I had played around with coding myself, but really learned first at Stanford. The thing is after returning to Japan I went to a specialty school that didn't even have an entrance exam - anyone can attend, and had to re-learn everything during the first year. I thought this would be worthless, but I quickly found out I had been taught how to code very poorly. You could easily draw parallels from programming education to math education in America vs math education in Japan or India.

I'm sure I'll get marked flamebait for all of this, but from my personal experiences both learning to code and working with other coders from America, Japan, and India I can tell you I'd probably never choose to partner with an American coder over an Indian or Japanese. Drop the attitudes and learn from those who in reality are doing it better than you.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

MBCook (132727) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542246)

...but I quickly found out I had been taught how to code very poorly.

Can you explain what you were taught incorrectly (or just weren't taught)? I'm curious what the issues were.

Re:Offshoring. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542330)

You end up with that attitude no matter where the programmer is from. In my experience, the Indian programmers are a lot like American programmers during the late 90's. They went into the field because people are looking for programmers. However, they have neither the skills or the aptitude to learn proper programming techniques. At Chrysler there was the 5:00 meeting everyday with all the Indian developers crowding around the cube of one person, programming in a group. This does not look good for the group. Right now I would say it is about a 60-40 split of all programmers with the 40% not having any business creating code.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

RazzleFrog (537054) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542178)

Protectionism never works. It's a global market and you can't go back now. If you want Johnny to not lose his job to Jhoni than he better learn some value added skills.

Re:Offshoring. (1, Insightful)

tthomas48 (180798) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542200)

Yeah, that's why software developers are some of the highest paid workers in the US. If you're having trouble finding a programming job you are probably piss poor at it and should look for another line of work. There are hundreds of open jobs right now in my city.

Re:Offshoring. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542206)

WTF is Johnny going to code? Angry Birds II - The Extended Remix Edition? Given the amount of craptastic content available in any app store, we probably have enough coders. Now, teach Johnny to think, and we might have something.

Re:Offshoring. (0)

DurendalMac (736637) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542288)

Baloney. There are TONS of US jobs out there for entry level programmers. Crap software tends to be what gets outsourced. Most companies want to keep their stuff domestic and under their own roof if they want good stuff.

Re:Offshoring. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542402)

Johnny can code, just that there's too much against Johhny to make him want to do so.

Get rid of offshoring, and Johnny will want to code.

Yes, and then Johnny will code just as crappy as offshore "Johnnies" do.

Re:Offshoring. (2)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542468)

Why should everyone in the US be a computer programmer? It makes no sense. Who cares? I want automechanics and skilled artisans, not programmers; we have enough programmers, and the steady spiral downward might be because they're rolling out of college and taking up beggary due to the lack of programming jobs.

Stupid single-minded one-dimensional gits trying to "fix" education...

Re:Offshoring. (3)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542532)

Get rid of offshoring, and Johnny will want to code.

You make programming sound like some kind of a chore, a typical day job that someone is only going to do because they are paid to do it. I am sure that such programmers exist, but the best programmers out there are the ones for whom programming is as natural as breathing, who would be hacking even if they were unemployed, and who are enjoy the work that they do. This is not terribly different than the situation with mathematicians -- the best mathematicians are the ones who love math.

America has a lot of trouble teaching math to middle school and high school students, at least by comparison with other countries. It should come as no surprise that we have trouble teaching computer programming, which is very close to mathematics. It also doesn't help that we have a mass media that portrays computer programmers as these nerdy anti-social types (yes they sometimes become rich, but we glamorize people who were born into wealth).

if you're not interested in computers.... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541888)

no amount of coddling will make you a good programmer.

Re:if you're not interested in computers.... (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541942)

Ahh; but what makes a good programmer and a programmer good?

Re:if you're not interested in computers.... (4, Insightful)

Anrego (830717) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542090)

A disturbing interest in the kind of things that put off the kids described in this article

There are exceptions, but most of the programmers I know (and myself), when first exposed to computers, immediately started wondering how they worked and how we could "make programs". If that curiosity and interest isn't automatic and you have to be "tricked" into it... in my opinion you'll probably be a bad programmer.

Re:if you're not interested in computers.... (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542210)

You can say that about anything and it would be just as true. If you are not interested in doing it, you will not do it very well. These kids should find skills they won't mind doing for a third of their adult lives, not something they have to be tricked into.

Re:if you're not interested in computers.... (1)

geoffrobinson (109879) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542360)

There has to be a combination of some skill and interest. I would really like to be a major league ball player but I stunk in Little League.

Learn the logic, first. (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541906)

Johnny needs a solid foundation in Programming Logic and avoiding pitfalls of "drop-through logic" before Johnny writes code for production.

Re:Learn the logic, first. (1)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541962)

Johnny probably needs motivation and opportunity to learn how to code before he worries about attaining production-quality habits. Trying to ingrain correctness from day one is why no one studies Latin and Ancient Greek any more. (And can we, as a society, really afford FORTRAN programs becoming mysterious cultural artefacts?)

Re:Learn the logic, first. (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542176)

Johnny probably needs motivation and opportunity to learn how to code before he worries about attaining production-quality habits. Trying to ingrain correctness from day one is why no one studies Latin and Ancient Greek any more. (And can we, as a society, really afford FORTRAN programs becoming mysterious cultural artefacts?)

My first motivation was in seeing what I could get this box to do. After that it was smartening up, learning how to be a tidy coder. Microsoft's legions of bugs and security holes tells you how emphasis is placed upon meeting delivery deadlines over quality.

Re:Learn the logic, first. (1)

wed128 (722152) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542326)

FORTRAN programs will never become artifacts as long as two conditions are met:

1. FORTRAN manuals still exist
2. The state of computer science education is such that picking up a new language is a trivial task.

I have never used FORTRAN in my life; I am absolutely confident i could learn it quickly if i had to.

In other words .... (4, Insightful)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541920)

... it's designed to attract the types of students who are disinterested in, or don't have the mind-set for, "real programming".

That worked out real well for all those colleges that churn out useless web monkeys - but not so well for the unemployable students going around with their "Certificate as a Webmaster's Assistant".

What next - "Programming by Powerpoint"? Oh wait ...

tomhudson do U get paid by adverts U have (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542012)

@ trolltalk.com? A simple yes or no will do!

APK

Re:tomhudson do U get paid by adverts U have (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542448)

Care to point out any time in history when trolltalk.com ran even one paid advertisement?

Hint - you can pick from these three: never, null, and zero.

You still haven't explained how people giving away their GPL'd code is greedy (which is the accusation you made elsewhere, that by doing so on trolltalk I'm a greedy advertiser - webmistress Rachel completely trolled you on that, and you took the bait :-).

YHBT. Again! Sucker! Why don't you just stick slashdot in your precious hosts file and make the Interwebs safer for yourself?

Re:In other words .... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542046)

What next - "Programming by Powerpoint"? Oh wait ...

That's called an "M.B.A."

Re:In other words .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542488)

What next - "Programming by Powerpoint"? Oh wait ...

That's called an "M.B.A."

The funny thing is, the (top 20) MBA program I'm currently working through is trying to reduce dependence on powerpoint. Meanwhile, the major technically dominated corporation (20B market cap with less MBA representation than most of that size) that is paying for said program has miles of processes, created by "software engineers" that are basically driven by mandatory, verbose to the point of uselessness, powerpoint presentations for customer reviews.

So while your mileage may vary, you might want to check those stereotypes at the door if your intent is progress.

Johnny can't code because his Java education hid what's going on under the hood, such that when he goes to write something more complex than "Hello World", he doesn't really understand why his Java app is (effectively) leaking memory, his pointers... sorry, references get all bungled, etc.... That and when he hits corporate land, he's graded on his reports, not his code, so he never gets the correct mentoring.

tomhudson: R U paid by adverts @ trolltalk.com? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542232)

Answer the question in the subject-line above: YES or NO.

tomhudson = GREEDY ADVERTISER? Proof's below, & thank-you webmistressrachel, and this post shows later below what lengths he'll go to for protecting his pennies!

(E.G.-> ac trolling & stalking of myself, + libeling myself even, as he is undoubtedly doing again now, as it is the only thing he knows when "ReAcTiNg" while trolling as ac replies, lol!)

Oh wait, I also forgot to include showing you you also pull bogus downmods of others & upmods of yourselves as well (via your pal, countertrolling's statement here, on the bogus mechanics of that much also -> http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2245866&cid=36491652 [slashdot.org] )

I really want to stress this to you apk, (and whilst doing so needle tomhudson about it!) trolltalk isn't a forum anymore. It's an advert for TomHudson's...software. - by webmistressrachel (903577) on Wednesday June 22, @01:28PM (#36531394) Journal

QUOTED FROM -> http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2250914&cid=36531394 [slashdot.org]

Hilarious (but... that's what you get for being obnoxious trolls whose motivation is GREED apparently!) & the amazing lengths you went to were incredible (see my p.s. below where you ac stalked & trolled me + told others to do so as well). Bad, bad, bad tomhudson, lol!

---

TOM HUDSON'S "FAIL LIST" ON DISPROVING MY POINTS ON HOSTS FILES NUMEROUS TIMES:

(Since HOSTS can block adverts online/adbanners so you get more speed, &, so you are protected vs. malicious content in online adbanners also)

---

tomhudson bullshit on HOSTS is outnumbered 30:1 vs. apk evidences:

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2087330&cid=35847946 [slashdot.org]

---

tomhudson BURNED on DNS vs. HOSTS and CPU cycles/memory & more used on HIS "ideas" vs. HOSTS vs. apk's ideas:

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2087330&cid=35879374 [slashdot.org]

---

tomhudson BURNED & RAN on HOSTS vs. VIRUSES vs. myself yet again:

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2088808&cid=35877448 [slashdot.org]

---

tomhudson says "hosts are so 90's" & apk's fellow RESPECTED security person wrote a noted article on them in 2009: (based on his readings of MY posts in forums no less)

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2088808&cid=35876806 [slashdot.org]

---

And others also...

APK

P.S.=> PROOF/EVIDENCES THEREOF in tomhudson calling me the HOSTS FILE TROLL etc. & stating to his trolltalk.com pals to stalk & troll me via AC replies:

---

"Wait until he starts on another kick, then reply to him as an AC. It's the new meme". - by tomhudson (43916) on Sunday May 09 2010, @08:29PM (#32150544) Homepage Journal

QUOTED VERBATIM FROM -> http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1646272&cid=32150544 [slashdot.org]

---

#2

HOWTO: trolling the hosts file guy in one easy step

"The next time you see a post by him, just reply anonymously. And to really mess with his head, reply anonymously to your anonymous post, disagreeing with your first anon post (extra points if you claim in the second post that you're him - that REALLY sets him off). He'll accuse you of being me" - by tomhudson (43916) on Saturday April 16, @01:38PM (#35841122) Homepage Journal

QUOTED VERBATIM FROM -> http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2086424&cid=35841122 [slashdot.org]

---

#3

"if you're going to tell this guy to stop spamming his hosts file crap, make sure you do it anonymously" - by tomhudson (43916) on Saturday April 16, @12:45PM (#35840680) Homepage Journal

QUOTED VERBATIM FROM -> http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2086920&cid=35840680 [slashdot.org]

---

and of course, tomhudson's numerous FAILING "attacks" on points on HOSTS files I put up as well afterwards!

* UTTERLY HILARIOUS - not only is tomhudson a troll, but also a greedy slime who will do ANYTHING (including stalk, troll, & harass) to keep those pennies coming in, lmao!

Which is WHY of course, tomhudson began his tirade to try to libel myself here and stalk me as well on this forums shown immediately above of course

tomhudson hates HOSTS because they can be used to block out adverts online (which in turn, speeds one up massively, and, can protect one vs. malicious code in adbanners too from 1 easily edited text file):

* You only did this, to yourself, tomhudson, nobody else!

... apk

Re:In other words .... (3, Informative)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542480)

Not necessarily. Johnny could be a diamond in the rough, but thinks that programming is hard and pointless. By giving him a rewarding goal that shows results quickly, he might discover that he actually has a talent and a passion. It worked for me - I only learned to program so that I could hack Netrek, and now I do some fairly deep fu.

Remember, we're competing for Johnny's heart and mind. Would we rather that he became a lawyer, or an accountant?

Motivation (1)

jimmerz28 (1928616) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541952)

That was the one frustrating thing about CS classes it seemed like a whole lot of useless exercises. I wanted something that felt like it would matter later; exercises that show me how to draw a circle on the screen are great, but students need applicable exercises to show them why this stuff matters.

When we'd talk after class as juniors in college we wondered if we really knew anything at all, because it felt like we didn't.

Motivation is everything and if you feel like what you're learning has no applicability it's damn depressing.

Re:Motivation (3, Insightful)

geoffrobinson (109879) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542052)

I understand your feelings. At the same time it sounds like someone learning chord progressions on the guitar and wondering how it was applicable to playing Led Zeppelin songs.

Re:Motivation (3, Insightful)

wed128 (722152) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542396)

This.

A lot of people taking computer science in college and wondering why they're not learning how to do ASP.NET projects in Visual Studio belong in a Tech School. The world needs bottom level implementers just like it needs ditch diggers.

University level computer science is about Design, not Implementation.

Re:Motivation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542298)

You weren't supposed to be only learning how to draw circles. You were also supposed to be learning how circles are drawn.

Most of the kids in CS programs think the courses don't apply because, for one reason or another, the students don't understand WHY they're important. I see this a lot in algorithm analysis and theoretical CS courses, as well as discrete math courses. I wouldn't go near hiring someone who did poorly in those courses, unless all I wanted was someone to churn out shitty code they found on google that solves unrelated problems.

They think the classes are just rote training exercises and they simply copypasta their code from google searches and end up not knowing how to do shit.

Re:Motivation (1)

tnk1 (899206) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542340)

I agree. When I took CS in college, I was taught all sorts of things that I can understand why they might be useful, especially for actual computer scientists, but have had no application on my career. Like the processor design class I had to take. Knowing digital design makes a lot of sense, and it was certainly interesting, but I can't think of one time I have ever used it. Except maybe as a story told to co-workers about how I designed a pipelined processor in software and had to use assembly language to operate it and get a result.

The worst thing about it is that there do exist some places where optimization from CS would come into play, but you can't use them because they insist that you work with frameworks, libraries and templates that speed up coding, but completely take any customization out of your hands. Not that I want to code my own garbage collection, for instance, but you learn in CS how to do those things and then never use them again.

I think there are more people out there that would be interested in programming (as opposed to CS) if you didn't have to learn to be a computer scientist to get a programming job. Most programmers are not computer scientists. They learn languages, and use frameworks and other tools to make thinks work. A programmer is a craftsman, not a scientist. Given the materials and tools, the best programmers can create masterpieces, but they don't need to know the details behind every tool they use.

Problem is (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 2 years ago | (#36541972)

It's hard for young students to see the purpose of these kinds of exercises, particularly when there is already plenty of software available to accomplish the same tasks, with no programming required.

The big problem with doing large "real" projects while still learning is that eventually you hit a point where you realize your initial design was bad. On a small "make work" project you can start over .. on a large project you just kind of have to go with it. Obviously this happens in real life to seasoned pros as well... but while you are still learning the fundementals it's apt to happen way more often and would seem to hold less educational value.

Somewhat offtopic, something that isn't done enough when people are learning to do design and coding, is to analyze failures. If you come up with a bad design, don't just bin it and start fresh.. really look at the process you went through to end up with that bad design. Sometimes it is a lack of understanding of some concept (especially true when initially learning OO fundementals) ... but sometimes it is a way that you looked at a problem. I think a lot can be learnt not just from looking at a bad design and analysing why it is bad, but also looking at we arrived at that design.

Re:Problem is (1)

cklosowski (1344379) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542034)

Somewhat offtopic, something that isn't done enough when people are learning to do design and coding, is to analyze failures

I think that's totally on topic. It's part of the learning process. The other thing that isn't taught is how to take that 'bad design' and refactor it to become a good design. Scrapping an entire codebase isn't feasible 100% of the time, but a refactor can breathe new life into a codebase. In order to improve, you must know where it went bad. Plain and simple.

Re:Problem is (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542184)

The other thing that isn't taught is how to take that 'bad design' and refactor it to become a good design.

Totally agree. Ongoing maintenance in general (which is at least a huge chunk of the jobs out there) isn't taught well.

What I actually think would be a good way to do this, is have some software application that is maintained for _years_ by the various classes. As a project, each class has to add new functionality to it... upgrade it to the latest technology, etc. The grading would cover not only that the new functionality worked, but that all the existing functionality continued to work and that the code base was still in a maintainable-ish state. I'm sure one could come up with some pretty clever "new functionality requirements" that would require extensive re-work and refactoring to make functional.

I'll tell you why (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36541980)

You programmers rest on the achievements of the physical sciences which allowed the production of billion transistor CPUs, gigahertz clock rates and gigabytes of RAM , etc. There is no consequence to writing academically "bad" software. Just keep waiting and hoping for a faster computer and blame the hardware for being "slow", even though you wouldn't even understand how a 25 year old computer actually worked inside.

Software is now a personal thing, everyone with a glimmer of an idea invents a new language or "framework" for one specific task, creating a tidal wave of buzzwords, incompatible ways of doing things and general confusion. Software is a world where you learn something one day, flush it down the sink at the end of the day and start again from scratch the next day.

Software is a world in which people can say with a straight face they are "craftsmen" when in reality a craft is all about learning a set of tools that DOESN'T CHANGE, so you CAN learn the tool! Do you know any craftsmen who learn let's say about the circular saw, then forget all about and find some other way to cut wood the next day? You'd have them committed for mental evaluation.

Software shouldn't be all that different. At the end of the day, your job is to take a byte from here and put it there. That's it.

Re:I'll tell you why (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542102)

You're the same kind of person that railed against the circular saw in the first place, I bet. Normal saws were plenty good enough and inventing new things was pointless, eh?

Tools change all the time for ALL professions and crafts. It just so happens that programming is new and as such hasn't been solidified yet.

Feel free not to use anything we make. It won't hurt our feelings.

Re:I'll tell you why (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542144)

You're completely misunderstanding what makes a craftsman a craftsman. A master woodworker doesn't "learn the circular saw". Yes, that may be one of his tools, but his craftsmanship is not dependent on it. And yes, I would expect a master woodworker to be interested in new tools. Laser guided saws, sliding miter saws, etc. Hell, the miter saw itself is a fairly recent development.

There is no difference between a woodworker learning to use a new type of plane, chisel, or saw and a developer learning to use a new IDE, language, or pattern.

In my experience (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542032)

In my experience, it's nothing like that. I think you will have a relatively constant percentage of the population with the ability to think in the way that allows programming to come as a natural skill. All the enticements in the world, all the attempts to make it exciting... they may find a few more of these minds and make them aware of what they can do. They'll probably also entice a lot of minds that aren't really capable of showing the same level of skill - the same types that show up en masse for offshore development contracts, or like those in the 90s who hopped on the programming bandwagon to make money. (Same thing, by the way - just different environments.) People who can get by - but don't expect them to come up with a decent algorithm or even to implement an existing one without step by step instructions.

You either have it or you don't. I think in this case of nature/nurture, nature plays a much bigger factor. Nurturing can find these minds, but I've not seen any evidence that it can create them.

How much (1)

Inda (580031) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542036)

How much game programming can you do in an hour's lesson? Even Scratch, used at our local school, takes an age to get the loop timings and event handling right. My little'un soon got bored of that.

How long would it take one of you guys to program Tic-Tac-Toe in a low level scripting language? What about with an AI?

The kids spend 38 weeks a year at school, maybe doing an hour ICT a week. Knock Tic-Tac-Toe out in 38 hours? I think not.

The article also spoke about getting Johnny interested... My little'un camp back from school yesterday with a robot. It consisted of a batery pack, two motors, two microswitches with cable-ties attached, which doubled the speed of the motor when pressed, all held together with electical tape, with two googly-eyes on top. You want interesting? That's what you do with young children.

Re:How much (1)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542194)

The kids spend 38 weeks a year at school, maybe doing an hour ICT a week. Knock Tic-Tac-Toe out in 38 hours? I think not.

Depends on at what age we're talking about, when I was in HS we did Tic-Tac-Toe with a primitive "AI" that essentially tried to play a perfect game with a "fudge factor" that determined the probability of it making a mistake. This was the first project we had for the first programming course and took nowhere near 38 hours.

Of course, for most younger kids (say, grades 1 through 7 or so) who aren't interested in programming in the first place it's going to be hard to get anything done in 38 hours, they won't even care, to them it's just a matter of getting a passing grade and moving along to more fun things.

Re:How much (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542296)

Those games are too hard for them to make. Punch the monkey with pygame is a better example. If that takes 38 hours little Timmy needs to be steered towards jobs more suited to his skillset, like ditch digging or collecting welfare checks.

We got in at a good time (2)

jaymz2k4 (790806) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542038)

I can't help but feel lucky to have met computers back in the 80's and to have spent my time using something "simple" like the C64 with BASIC and then moving up to PC's learning various languages and growing my interest more and more to then eventually be sat a linux workstation coding in Python for a living. Many of the ids I know through family no longer look at computers with the same sparkly or excitement of those early days.

I feel incredibly lucky to have got in at a point where I could experience relatively low spec & power computing and see it progress to the state it is today. I get the feeling that a lot of people getting into computers these days as kids don't get that sort of exposure and so don't get so bonded to learning about them. There was a good chance you could understand the schematic of a C64. Look at a die of a modern i7 and it's more modern art than anything that's going to make sense to a kid.

I definitely feel that in some way we lucked out in getting to experience computing the past 30 years.

Re:We got in at a good time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542510)

LoseThos, my operating system, addresses this. http://www.losethos.com

FYI: Something worth be paid for is hard to learn (1)

mattaw (718560) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542040)

Good grief - how far have we come?

"The middle school years are critical for students in reaching conclusions regarding their own skills and aptitudes,"

Yes educators should make things understandable, yes we should make learning fun but there is a whole big nasty world of hungry people who would kill for the chance to "reach conclusions about their own skills...".

Where are the parents or schools telling students that engineering, maths and science can make the difference between having a job and not? Because at the end of the day those students need to get the cold hard fact: Do something useful and get paid, or hope somebody else will just give you a living. Presumably they don't expect to be hungry no matter what happens.

N.B. please reread the "Yes educators should make things understandable, yes we should make learning fun" line before replying.

Bring Back BASIC (1)

nevermore94 (789194) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542048)

I started programming BASIC when I was 10 (1985) and that is where I developed my love of programming. Sure, as a Java developer now, I know BASIC does little more than teach bad programming habits, but it was FUN and it helped me develop The Knack. There is plenty of time to learn proper OOPs methods later once you develop the interest to learn more about programming.

Re:Bring Back BASIC (1)

owlstead (636356) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542304)

Pascal or Modula 2 is probably better since it does not learn you things you must unlearn later.

Why johnny can't code? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542066)

Because all the johnnies who are smart enough to code... Also are smart enough to figure out THERES NO MONEY IN BEING A CODER!

What? (1)

ZirconCode (1477363) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542068)

Why teach people which don't want to learn?
Those which want to learn definitely can, it is not about the reward but about the activity itself which should create joy.
That is the problem with schools.

Don't cater (2)

clinko (232501) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542074)

I Think the problem is that "Johnny" doesn't like programming. Why fix that?

The worst employee is a specialist that hates his specialty. He's only going to fight his way out of his job and defer to others. Why do you think there's usually more IT managers than Developers? :)

Why not? (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542420)

You're right about Johnny not liking programming. That's what TFA is pointing out. Why fix it? Because you're never going to fill the gap between the low number of able programmers and the need for them if you don't entice kids into the field. How can you expect to engage middle and high-schoolers in programming if you stick to theory. Let them figure out they hate it in college, that's what it's there for.

Young kids probably picture Milton and his stapler when they think of computer science. How can we possibly expect to attract anybody with that image, even the ones who can program but don't know it yet?

bad career choice (1)

theCat (36907) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542114)

Been writing web applications for 15 years. Through 5 startups. Been outsourced twice, one time with the entire US team the week after closing an important B-round that we all worked really hard to land.

I have two kids. I've never suggested work in a technology field as a career choice for my own children. I'm glad they don't teach coding in schools, it's not good work. Coders are paid sh*t and used like toilet paper. All of our daily creativity and occasional brilliance ends up making the MBA pukes rich and rolling in blow.

A case for intervention by government. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542440)

Get rid of the means for business to send work offshore or to make work less secure, and that can change for the better.

Re:bad career choice (1)

Rob Kaper (5960) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542486)

Coders are paid sh*t and used like toilet paper.

Maybe where you live. Here in the Netherlands, that's simply not true. Good coders are appreciated, well-paid and treated as humans. But the latter part might not be related to the profession and more with a difference in work ethic between the US and Europe.

Teaching (5, Insightful)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542148)

It has been my experience that walking a student through making something simple will widen their eyes considerably. This usually means something like an easy game where they can visually see the results of their work. Games that can be modified easily are even better, because they -will- play with the code and try to improve it for their own tastes.

On the other hand, teaching them to write a linked list is mind-numbingly boring for someone who can't imagine why they'd want such a thing.

Getting people interested in programmer is mostly about giving them the right exposure at the start.

This course sounds like it at least is headed the right direction.

Re:Teaching (1)

w_dragon (1802458) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542350)

EA once made a game called 'tank wars', where the idea was that you would program an AI for a tank given a fairly simple API they provided, and then you would put different AIs up against each other and see who wins. Something like that could be great for initial programming - there is a competitive aspect and the overhead to get something simple going is pretty low. The copy I had was buggy and didn't really work, but I think the idea is a sound one for introducing programming.

Wow CopyWrong R US?!? (0)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542164)

AgentSheets with Ristretto® - Define agent behaviors with Visual AgenTalk® - Amazing new Conversational Programming technology (patent-pending)...

It is amazing what government funding can do for the bottom line. I love this page Why Us It [agentsheets.com]

Free tools are not always free solutions
Yes, there are free tools. But just how well do they really work and how sustainable are they? Do they include a curriculum that you can use? Can you really make sophisticated games with them? Can the tool be used for more than just games. For instance, can it be used to make powerful scientific simulations including visualizations? Do you want to be just a graduate research experiment? AgentSheets technology is studied and proven. It comes with a comprehensive curriculum that is ready to be put in place and will grow with your needs.

More results taken from the people who paid for it (1)

dwheeler (321049) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542382)

Sigh. Yet another project that took the money from the people, and took away the results from the people. That's rediculous. If "we the people" paid for research, then "we the people" should get the result. It should be a rule that all government-funded research software must be released as open source software (unless it's classified or for some other reason can't be released to the public in any form)... at least by default. If someone wants to develop proprietary software, then they should be investing their own money, not taking mine. Why am I not getting what I paid for?

Programming games for kids (1)

rwa2 (4391) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542196)

Always looking for things to motivate my young aspiring computer-game-designer offspring. When I was their age (8) I wasn't really exposed to computers all that much, but did already have exposure to Logo [wikipedia.org]. Any good sites online that might provide some experience similar to that? The only one I know of is Lightbot [armorgames.com].

The wife and kids are heavily into Minecraft at the moment, and I'm hoping to get them into building more redstone circuits [minecraftwiki.net]. (unfortunately, minecrafwiki's realstone circuits seem to be down at the moment). I'm pretty tickled by the whole concept of constructing complex circuits the size of buildings out of basic NOT-gate building blocks, which has kinda been a running joke in IC logic design classes forever.

What are other good programming games / intros to expose them to?

Re:Programming games for kids (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542356)

Pygame is nice and easy to use. If you want it to be a game not programming Little Big Planet is something you might want to look into.

Johnny can suck on it (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542254)

I'm happy Johnny can't code, means I can keep my job and the market doesn't get flooded with yet *more* crappy code.

We don't need more programmers, we need to treat the ones we already have better.

Make It Fun (1)

jarich (733129) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542272)

Whether you love or hate Ruby, you should look at how the Ruby community has sold itself. It's a language that's designed (according to evangelists) to be fun. Frameworks like Rails are about making the work fun. Again, I'm quoting pitches... but.... But it's interesting what kind of a community that sales pitch draws in.

.

In other words, start off students with easy wins and clear syntax (like Ruby). Don't make them spend hours debugging pointer bugs (C/C++). There's plenty of time for that later. First get them hooked on creating. That's where the fun in programming is... making something new that actually works. I suspect most of us remember the first time we wrote a program that actually did something. That's the high, the rush, that we want potential programmers to feel. How easy can we make it get their first hit?

How can we do this instead of depending on their internal motivation? I'm sure we'll rope in a few that don't have the chops for it, but I bet we'll find a lot more who do but never considered the field because the barriers to entry were too high.

This is a BAD idea (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542274)

Game programming is not like most "real" programming - it's designed differently, implemented differently, and fundamentally just differs. Game programming is full of coding in the exceptional cases - run doMainBattleLoop(), unless you're in a boss battle and in a round less than 4, when you should run doBossBanterBattleLoop(), unless you're in a battle with Boss X and it isn't the final one, when you should add a branch to the end to call doBossRunawayScene() instead of doBattleEndScene(), but if it's the actual last battle, jump to doBattleEndSceneFinal(), then call doCreditsMinigameLoop() after expanding backgroundMusicBuffer from 10 minutes to 20 so it doesn't crash while loading that big long ending song the music guy wrote...

Not to mention the language issues. I'm willing to bet the school's using UE3. That engine does a lot of game stuff (weapons code, broad AI coding, etc.) in a proprietary "UnrealScript" - similar in syntax to JavaScript, but with a completely different DOM model, and with a lot of added functions.

All this is going to do is teach students bad coding and bad game design.

A Gen-X'ers view... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36542348)

Two factors:

1. Johnny, via the internet, has FAR too many distractions these days. In my day (get off of my lawn) getting the latest game involved sneaker net (which, where I was living had a pretty low bandwidth) and often cracking it (or applying a known crack) yourself, so some intimacy with the machine was involved. Johnny doesn't HAVE to know anything about the computer to get the latest and greatest game up and running on it. There's also Johnny's PS3, his Xbox 360, his DS, the 250 channels of cable, etc. that make it hard to devote a lot of time to a single device. We had 4 channels (the new-fangled Fox network!) and a NES with three carts.

2. Johnny's world involves computers that are FAR more complex than the computers of my era. A C64 or an Apple II (or 8088) is much more accessible and easier to learn than a modern i7 system. Even if Johnny wanted to learn how to program, the fundamentals are much more difficult to grasp on a modern system than on an 8-bit system.

I'm forty, by the way. I remember asking my dad to buy me a game when I was about 12 or 13. He didn't, but two weeks later a package arrived from some store undoubtedly found in the back of Computer Shopper. He opened it up, pulled out a copy of Turbo Pascal, handed it to me and said, "Here...you can write your own games with this." ...and I did. It was probably the most brilliant parenting move he made in his entire career. )

yay for education reform (1)

swan5566 (1771176) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542416)

This is just one of many examples of how many educational methods in general have fallen behind the times, so I applaud them for trying to fix it. This problem actually shows up in college, and even grad school (I'll attest to first-hand), though obviously in different ways than in grade school. I long for the day when educational systems take a more proactive attitude toward addressing this problem, and take more responsibility towards preparing their students for the "here and now".

Game programming. (1)

mustPushCart (1871520) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542450)

When I learnt how to program I couldn't see any other use for it except to make games. And soon as I had the opportunity I went for it. Now of course I am a little more knowledgeable. I have a few friends who are working for some huge banks doing java code and earning buckets of monies, another few in web development and a few others scattered here and there but im pretty happy to be a Game programmer. Its not the best way to learn but it might be the best way to get one interested in programming.

On topic, I would like to see if people who arent good at math also cant code.

Instant Gratification (1)

JoeTalbott (2146840) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542464)

I see the problem as one of people needing instant gratification. The mindset seems to be:

Why bother with the fundamentals when someone else has already done them? I can just use a library I found on the Internet.

What I've encountered is that one ends up with 'software' that's a bunch of not-well-understood third-party pieces cobbled together that works under ideal circumstances. In my estimation developers must have:
  • 1. The drive and passion to want to understand how things work, even the boring already been done things.
  • 2. The vision to foresee user misuse and misunderstanding of the product.
  • 3. The notion that software is more than its interface, the inside is important too.

Teaching Computers are for Games (1)

unil_1005 (1790334) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542472)

Once upon a time computers were invented to solve serious, difficult problems.

Today they are toys to fill up our empty hours.

Or sales platforms.

How do you spell iPad?

It's a carreer with high stress and long hours (1)

mrflash818 (226638) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542492)

It is my opinion that the dot com bubble bursting, offshoring, and the equation of salary vs hours worked + stress is why people do not pursue programming as a profession.

So it seems it is not that people can't code, it is that there is no motivation to do it as a career.

Hobbyist programmers, or those that do it 'on the side' to their regular career (I am assuming many that participate in open source or linux-based software) will be able to code, but that they will not be counted as a full-time coder.

Resources are there, just not well-established (1)

kakyoin01 (2040114) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542502)

I think that a combination of a lack of available resources and late introduction to all things coding are responsible. We have the technology, we just don't have it in the classrooms everywhere. Perhaps due to lack of budget or adherence to "if it ain't broke, don't fix it", the curriculum hasn't quite arrived yet. It can be tough finding the right instructors, teaching style and materials (including facilities and hardware) for the job of educating those interested. Yes it's true that there can be those students who get 'suckered in' to liking programming but then discovering that's not what they want to do, but I think that a late introduction to tech fields such as programming in grade school is at least partially to blame for that. But hey, there's a new CS Principles course in pilot thanks to CollegeBoard. Perhaps not all hope is lost. :)

Story misses it again (0)

Slugster (635830) | more than 2 years ago | (#36542526)

Kids don't want to program mostly due to the huge amount of offshoring/layings-off that occurred about oh ten years ago.

It's only colleges that want to sell this shit to students--and the students know that it is largely rotten fish. For every US student who graduates with any kind of CIS degree, there's a half-dozen B1B visas who will work for less.


If the people who run universities were half as smart as they think they are, they'd have come out against B1B visa hiring and offshoring a long time ago.
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