What do you program for?

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  1. #1
    Math wizard
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    What do you program for?

    What got you into programming? What do you program for? What kinds of programs do you make?

    For me, I'm into programming video games. As my math skills improved, I studied game mechanics in such great detail (right down to the algorithms used) and from repeatedly playing games for dozens or even hundreds of hours, I've always wanted to make my own game. Programming was confusing at first, but that changed in late 2004. I used a tool called Gamestudio, but it was highly limited in what I can do and there are other annoyances as well. I released "The Interactive Animation", my first program which met the main goal (explaining and demonstrating the effects of background scaling, as it is when I make my animated GIFs (I've been making animated GIFs since late 2001 or so). I later refined the first program and it became my first true game, The Supernatural Olympics. I was constantly getting frustrated with Gamestudio's only variable type and its low range and accuracy and by release, I had it. I've always wanted to add slopes, objects, pitched gliding, dynamic fog, and many other enhancements not even possible with Gamestudio (either due to limitations or the single variable type). Lite-C was an upcoming feature based heavily on C (rather than a heavily simplified C and javascript-like mix) which would support many more things, but I felt as if learning C would be faster and I'd be able to do more. I now only need to get past the basic things like what Windows functions I use and once I get this, pretty much any 2D game is within my reach even something as complex as an RPG game (like Final Fantasy 7, only 2D and my own creation instead). I also have two 3D games planned (one abandoned, one stalled), but 3D is not familiar territory to me.

    Outside games, other programs I make are to automate some tasks. When I process my music for my MP3 player, I need dozens of WAV files with only the sample rate changed to convert to MP3 (since there's no other way to change the speed). I wrote a program to generate these WAV files which is over 12 times faster than doing it manually (one file every 1.6 seconds instead of every 20 seconds, writing 50 MiB/sec). The other is to brighten and crop video frames (as BMP images) for my videos I record of stunts I do in my video games (like getting tossed up at 2400 mph in Super Monkey Ball 2 and attempting to make the goal (the clock is disabled, the only cheat used or needed)).

  2. #2
    Just Lurking Dave_Sinkula's Avatar
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    >What got you into programming?
    I went through the BSEE curriculum despising programming; discovered embedded systems programming a couple months after I was out, and preferred this form of "electronics".

    >What do you program for?
    An income. And little utilities.

    >What kinds of programs do you make?
    Over the years, stuff like this; currently for a maker of security system panels.
    7. It is easier to write an incorrect program than understand a correct one.
    40. There are two ways to write error-free programs; only the third one works.*

  3. #3
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    >What got you into programming?
    Started doing computer animation and some simple tool development with a scripting program supported by the program (Maya MEL). Found it to be fun, but damn slow so I started learning c++

    >What do you program for?
    World peace

    >What kinds of programs do you make?
    Working on a raytracer

  4. #4
    Registered User Queatrix's Avatar
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    World peace??

    >> What got you into programming?
    I was so into video games when I was like 7-10, and I've always wanted to make things that rock as much as they did. (Although, they are all way out dated now.) First I learned HTML. (Koni, probably thinks I only know how to use the <br> properly. ) Then after 2 years, c/c++, then 3 more years I am here now.
    Pathetic huh?

    >> What do you program for?
    I enjoy it, and I hope to me making money from it soon.

    >> What kinds of programs do you make?
    Now games (which got me into programing in the first place) isn't my big thing anymore. (I'm still making them though) The internet is allot more fascinating for me now.

  5. #5
    Crazy Fool Perspective's Avatar
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    >Koni, probably thinks I only know how to use the <br> properly.

    You need to close the tag for it to be proper markup, <br/>

  6. #6
    Captain Crash brewbuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ulillillia View Post
    What got you into programming?
    My mother was taking a class to learn Pascal around 1985 or so. We had a Commodore 64 at home. She bought games for it, but I always found myself quitting the games and dorking with the BASIC interpreter. My first real program was published in a magazine when I was 8. It was a program to convert English words to/from Pig Latin. The magazine sent me a check for $100, which is still sitting in an account somewhere earning interest.

    What do you program for?
    I'll interpret that to mean, WHY do I program? Because I need to solve problems. Because I am a terribly disorganized person in real life and I need a place in my mind where everything is orderly and aligned. If I didn't program I'd go crazy. I program because the machine must be made to bend to my will. It's one of the few things in the world that a person can truly understand completely and have absolute control over.

    What kinds of programs do you make?
    At home I enjoy writing programs which simulate physical processes. The motion of propagating ocean waves, the evolution of a quantum wavefunction, the turbulence of a fluid flowing in a pipe, etc. I also like to play with anything relating to information theory, a.k.a. data mining, language processing, encryption, data compression, communication theory, DSP... I also have a fondness for AI algorithms. I've written programs to play the game of Amazons using a combination of AB-negamax and statistical bounding, otherwise known as Multi-ProbCut, worked on some low-level firmware for a hexapod robot, and created a hybrid information-theoretic/neural network architecture for detecting and eliminating spam email. I even managed to collaborate on a USENIX publication on that topic. I enjoy writing code which runs on massively parallel architectures.

    Several years ago I invented and implemented my own functional scripting language called Scotch. It was never released, as it was merely an experiment.

    At work I work on stuff ranging from efficient rendering of print description languages, mixed-mode rasterization, PDF processing, font rendering, JBIG2 bitonal image compression, etc. I also work on software which automatically deskews, aligns, and compares document images for quality control purposes. I'm responsible for maintaining portability between all the platforms our software supports. I am a strong pundit for the use of Open Source software within the company.

    As a bizarre factoid, the largest single .c file I have ever written was 5700 lines long. (And yes, there were legitimate reasons for a single file being that large.)

    Hey, you asked :-)

  7. #7
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
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    The babes.

    Also the money to spend on the babes, but mostly the babes.

  8. #8
    Gawking at stupidity
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    I got into programming when someone introduced me to MUDs. A friend of mine was running his own MUD server and we wanted to tweak some of the code. I started looking at it and referencing different things online and found myself really interested in it. It just kind of took off from there.
    If you understand what you're doing, you're not learning anything.

  9. #9
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    At the rip old age of 5 my dad bought me a NES, I loved my NES and after completing my first game (Super Mario Brothers 3) I wanted to make a game, and since that day many years ago I have wanted to create a game. Entering 3 year of High School we got to learn Visual Basic 6, and from then I programmed for fun, I did it as a hobby, the learn all i could. After entering uni I met my friend Dave, who has a company for software development, over the past 2 years we have been planning our remake of his text based strategy game, we are making it 2D and over the past few weeks I have started to put all the bits together.

  10. #10
    Captain Crash brewbuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Govtcheez View Post
    The babes.

    Also the money to spend on the babes, but mostly the babes.
    What's even better than the babes is actually catching yourself a programmer babe! My wife not only codes, she's HOT

  11. #11
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    I've always loved cryptography so i suppose that's what got me into it, plus i just like doing it, its fun, and you get something out of it. Computer's are the future, so get in on the ground floor!!! =)
    "Anyone can aspire to greatness if they try hard enough."
    - Me

  12. #12
    Lean Mean Coding Machine KONI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Perspective View Post
    >Koni, probably thinks I only know how to use the <br> properly.

    You need to close the tag for it to be proper markup, <br/>
    *most evil grin on the planet*

    Actually, according to the specs, you need to:

    Include a space before the trailing / and > of empty elements, e.g. <br />, <hr /> and <img src="karen.jpg" alt="Karen" />. Also, use the minimized tag syntax for empty elements, e.g. <br />, as the alternative syntax <br></br> allowed by XML gives uncertain results in many existing user agents.
    So the correct way is <br />

    *evil laughter*

  13. #13
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brewbuck View Post
    What's even better than the babes is actually catching yourself a programmer babe! My wife not only codes, she's HOT
    I don't think I could stand it if my girlfriend was a programmer. Home time is home time; it's where I get away from work.

  14. #14
    The Right Honourable psychopath's Avatar
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    I don't have a girlfriend.
    Memorial University of Newfoundland
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    Mac and OpenGL evangelist.

  15. #15
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psychopath View Post
    I don't have a girlfriend.
    Eventually you'll find someone who's beautiful and accepts you for who you are and loves you.

    And then she'll leave you for someone in her math class.

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