Anyone purely self-taught?

This is a discussion on Anyone purely self-taught? within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; They sure do. Very well observed. I make a point of remembering it when coding for institutional content where text ...

  1. #61
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    They sure do. Very well observed.

    I make a point of remembering it when coding for institutional content where text is usually long. When text is somewhat short and more informative than anything else, I skip it.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  2. #62
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    I really don't see the use of WYSIWYG editors. Their only use is that people who can't afford to spend 10 minutes on learning the basics of HTML could make websites. Totally absurd.

    And actually it would take me much longer to make a website with a WYSIWYG editor than doing it manually. Once you've got used to the standards, HTML/XHTML is just so DAMN easy to write.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

  3. #63
    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    They are made so that you don't have to spend eternity debugging and figuring out solutions to code.
    I found that mixing together a site with just code is just purely annoying; using an editor made it so much easier. I would not consider doing it by hand again, if I write another site and I can help it.

    Even with much knowledge at your command, using a GUI is just so much faster.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

  4. #64
    Dr Dipshi++ mike_g's Avatar
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    Wow Maxorator, I never imagined you as the web development type

    At the end of the day you still have to either remember, or refer to the CSS properties of the elements you are creating. Be able to build a mental image of what to expect (idealy in each browser). Then test what you wrote. Then if it looks wrong go back and modify it until it looks right. Setting properties through a GUI and viewing instant results is a hell of a lot faster, unless of course you know exactly what you are doing.

  5. #65
    Ex scientia vera
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    I'm completely self-taught.

    I know C pretty decently, C++ as well as I'd like to know it right now, assembler, Perl and some other random scripting languages.

    I've been doing C for.. 4 years or so. Anyway, I'm self-taught simply due to the fact that I'm not even old enough to actually have any programming or computer science related classes. However, I'll be programming in Java next year at school.

    It is my opinion that you can teach yourself pretty much anything using the internet. Following only one source of information is not what I have in mind, but the thousands of sites that have the same, but just a tad different, information about the same thing. When you know the basics of a programming language, the rest is just bettering yourself at 'programmatic thinking', so to speak - how to do this, an algorithm for that, etc, anyway, so when you got the basics, you're just relying on yourself.

    I've also experienced that a lot of people learning programming at universities are often taught really, really outdated stuff. "Those who can, do - those who can't, teach." I don't blame them, anyway. Reaching your forties, settling in and establishing a family will probably mean that running around to tech conventions and doing mindless research on the internet about new standards and this and that gets tiring.

    Some of the best programmers I know are purely self-taught and possibly went to school to get some kind of a degree to get them jobs. Coincidentally, the worst ones are those who just started programming when they got a course in school - I know one exception though. The lead programmer of the game "Kane and Lynch" started programming in his twenties.

    To sum my rant up: I think that self-taught people can be just as good, even better, than those who got an academic degree in programming.

  6. #66
    Registered User whiteflags's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator View Post
    I really don't see the use of WYSIWYG editors. Their only use is that people who can't afford to spend 10 minutes on learning the basics of HTML could make websites. Totally absurd.

    And actually it would take me much longer to make a website with a WYSIWYG editor than doing it manually. Once you've got used to the standards, HTML/XHTML is just so DAMN easy to write.
    Along with what mike said, I don't think it's fair that you base your time estimates on your personal experience. The argument that I heard for WYSIWYG editors is that at most the same amount of time (and often a lot less) can be spent tidying your webpage to standards as it would have to write by hand. Not to mention that people with time on their hands, such as ourselves, who also like to optimize their utility and build stuff, will build tools to automate. I can't imagine initially writing something while I'm structuring it in HTML or making it look pretty.

    Provided you learn the standards, you will be able to apply them. I'm just trying to add some contrast to the mix. I honestly don't find it that difficult to bend tools to my will. I imagine others do this also.

    But (and to drag this on topic a bit) I learned HTML myself as well. It became a habit to study the source of the pages I visited, and eventually caught on to helper places like Webmonkey and whatnot.
    Last edited by whiteflags; 03-13-2008 at 06:50 PM.

  7. #67
    Fountain of knowledge.
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    I have been programming for years and still don't know how to program

  8. #68
    Registered User NeonBlack's Avatar
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    That's why I love you esbo.
    I copied it from the last program in which I passed a parameter, which would have been pre-1989 I guess. - esbo

  9. #69
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by citizen View Post
    The argument that I heard for WYSIWYG editors is that at most the same amount of time (and often a lot less) can be spent tidying your webpage to standards as it would have to write by hand.
    That is indeed the general argument I also hear in favor of WYSIWYGs editors. Curiously though, I hear that argument only from those in favor of these tools. What I never saw was a study that revealed that much (or the contrary for that matter).

    So, it is really hard not to base any comment on personal experience since it becomes as valid as the next thing.

    I do believe though that argument is as flawed as they come. I've had the opportunity to work with teams on both sides of the fence. And I always saw W editors bringing more pain to their users, then the traditional GUI editors.

    A traditional developer codes for the standards from the moment he types <html>. Everything he does from there, he does in control of his own code. A W editor developer, on the other hand has to tweak whatever is thrown at him by the code generator.

    On complex webpages this can become a daunting task. Not to mention the fact that certain types of changes to the code will render the WYSIWYG parser useless.

    And this is really only HTML. The CSS generated by these editors is almost always nightmarish in that it is bloated, most of the times ripe with redundancy, and often non browser aware.

    So, we turn the tables and I say that often the time spent tidying a webpage to standards is a lot more than if you had just done the thing by hand, instead of believing a code generator could ever make better decisions than you.

    ---

    Quiet frankly, and to open the game here, WYSIWYG are perfect tools for making complex websites very fast, but that are non standards compliant and browser dependent.

    I agree them to be fast tools for just that; crap code. And you really better get a comfortable chair and a week supplies if you want to try and convince me otherwise.
    Last edited by Mario F.; 03-13-2008 at 08:51 PM.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  10. #70
    Registered User whiteflags's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mario F. View Post
    ---

    Quiet frankly, and to open the game here, WYSIWYG are perfect tools for making complex websites very fast, but that are non standards compliant and browser dependent.

    I agree them to be fast tools for just that; crap code. And you really better get a comfortable chair and a week supplies if you want to try and convince me otherwise.
    A fine rebuttal Mario. I can't say I want to convince anyone that writing code by hand isn't the way to go. Every professional I know still prefers a text editor and some elbow grease. I mean there is a reason that about dot com throws a whole team of web developers at their site, and those people have to tweak and work with pages everyday. I doubt WYSIWYG editors are helping them.

    I really have to wonder though, the type of website that you'd be building with a WYSIWYG that is so complex. In my experience, programs like FrontPage and web alternatives don't really "break the internet," but then, there's a spark of minimalism in me. I'm not taking on huge projects that appeal to the masses at large. I generally don't use the gear before I have the idea either, which may be the key to my success.

    I rationalize like this: WYSIWYG is a nice alternative for the hopelessly busy person who wants to write web content. I routinely notice that actual content makers, especially on larger sites which would have facilities for them, have only remedial html in their toolbox and don't necessarily want to learn web development to hang out their own shingle on the roof of the Web. Or those who decide to throw a site together for interviewing purposes; a place to dump their resumes may only be temporary or simply not worth the effort beyond what can be stripped down and still be crisply professional. This is a niche's approach to development, which is the way it should be. For now.

    I don't think we do ourselves a service if web designers aren't eventually like graphic artists, with the same powerful tools. There will always be a need to learn fundamentals, of course. I certainly never made excuses for myself. (Do any graphical artists not learn to do material drawing?) But we'll figure out how to make it less tedious.

    People are welcome to disagree because of how things are now, if you'll excuse my arrogance. Looking toward a possible future.
    Last edited by whiteflags; 03-13-2008 at 10:59 PM. Reason: diction changes,

  11. #71
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike_g View Post
    Wow Maxorator, I never imagined you as the web development type
    Yeah, I've done a bunch of commercial sites (I am also a PHP programmer on the most popular web-based game in Estonia), lots of sites for testing stuff and lots of sites for friends. I learned HTML when I was 11, so I've been doing it for very long. XHTML 1.1 Strict pwns.
    Quote Originally Posted by mike_g View Post
    At the end of the day you still have to either remember, or refer to the CSS properties of the elements you are creating. Be able to build a mental image of what to expect (idealy in each browser). Then test what you wrote. Then if it looks wrong go back and modify it until it looks right. Setting properties through a GUI and viewing instant results is a hell of a lot faster, unless of course you know exactly what you are doing.
    I use Firebug for testing CSS properties quickly. It is VERY fast and I can also write the code myself. I don't trust ANY code generated by a program. Actually seeing the code gives a much better mental image. Me and my brother (web designer) are quite specialists already in cross-browser code, so I do think I know what I'm doing.

    Anyway, is it really so hard to press ALT+TAB twice and then F5?
    Last edited by maxorator; 03-14-2008 at 05:05 AM.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

  12. #72
    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator View Post
    XHTML 1.1 Strict pwns.
    Nice to see someone else who likes XHTML.
    Now, if only IE8 can support XHTML. I don't know if it does, anybody do know?
    If it does, then finally we can all be happy to use XHTML.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

  13. #73
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elysia View Post
    Nice to see someone else who likes XHTML.
    Now, if only IE8 can support XHTML. I don't know if it does, anybody do know?
    If it does, then finally we can all be happy to use XHTML.
    Well I have it, but I haven't tested if it supports XHTML totally. Anyway, it can't handle CSS2 nor CSS3 (can't blame them about this tho since Opera 9.5beta is the only one which does support CSS3 atm). And it is very buggy (even Hotmail doesn't work correctly on it) and crashes alot.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

  14. #74
    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    That's what you can expect from Microsoft beta software, huh? I'm not surprised considering how buggy their retail software area. If the "quality bar" for retail software is that low, then how low is it for betas?
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

  15. #75
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elysia View Post
    That's what you can expect from Microsoft beta software, huh? I'm not surprised considering how buggy their retail software area. If the "quality bar" for retail software is that low, then how low is it for betas?
    Actually I am totally satisfied with Windows XP, which is the only piece of Microsoft software I use.

    But yeah, IE has been awful since the day it was first released. Btw, Microsoft lately made an update to Windows Live Messenger - they gave it the Vista theme... wow, wonderful update. But that doesn't really matter since I use Pidgin.
    Last edited by maxorator; 03-14-2008 at 05:32 AM.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

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