On learning and games

This is a discussion on On learning and games within the General Discussions forums, part of the Community Boards category; Originally Posted by abachler Personally, I think Mario doesn't find learning to be fun. I'll watch a movie or read ...

  1. #16
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abachler View Post
    Personally, I think Mario doesn't find learning to be fun. I'll watch a movie or read an article about some scientific discovery that is of absolutely no use to me in my daily life, simply because I enjoy learning things
    I do find learning new things fun and... what's the word?... motivating. Exhilarating, even. It's like a drug to me. And I'm always in need of a fix.

    But then, it's true: I don't try to build an airplane when I just learned about gravity. Besides, not even knowing what type of airplane to build (despite loving all things airplane) is a clear sign I'm not ready for that yet. Maybe there's more I need to learn.
    Last edited by Mario F.; 10-08-2009 at 06:54 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.

  2. #17
    C++ Witch laserlight's Avatar
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    As per item #7 of the forum guidelines, I have decided to delete certain posts. I am going to hold the official warning stick this time on the grounds that it was a playful attempt to incite the thread starter so as to get the thread closed... but take this as an unofficial warning.
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  3. #18
    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mario F. View Post
    But then, it's true: I don't try to build an airplane when I just learned about gravity. Besides, not even knowing what type of airplane to build (despite loving all things airplane) is a clear sign I'm not ready for that yet. Maybe there's more I need to learn.
    Simple games cannot be compared to building real airplanes. The easiest games (tic-tac-toe, other simple console games) could be compared to making the most trivial paper airplanes. You are forgetting that multi-million dollar video games are not the only type of games.
    Last edited by maxorator; 10-10-2009 at 01:56 PM.
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  4. #19
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maxorator View Post
    Simple games cannot be compared to building real airplanes. The easiest games (tic-tac-toe, other simple console games) could be compared to making the most trivial paper airplanes. You are forgetting that multi-million dollar video games are not the only type of games.
    My one and only argument from the start was that after such a minimal gain in knowledge (after just understanding functions and references) trying to build a game with that wouldn't be beneficial. Instead it would be a lot better if he tried to progress his knowledge further. As soon as he would start, arrays, strings, char arrays, pointers, the const qualifier, the STL... all of that and more would would conspire to give Martin a bad time by confusing him and detracting him from the apprenticeship process he decided to undertake. Apprenticeship that should be his main priority at this point.

    A much better approach would be to try instead to practice by building minimal code snippets that could even incorporate the notion of a game but that would exclusively meant for him to test this newly gained knowledge in as many ways as possible.

    An example: He just learned about reference arguments. He would then proceed to try and build a few function examples by hand with only minimal code but that would test the information he was being lectured. He could even explore other possibilities beyond what he was reading, while sticking to the general theme of reference arguments.

    This would allow him to retain the acquired knowledge and proceed with is apprenticeship much faster. There's no deep benefit to what he was trying to do. Instead he will be increasing the length of time it will take him to learn the programming language to a level that THEN will allow him to start practicing with real project-wide code. He could (can) risk getting bored of the language if he doesn't allow himself to more quickly explore other interesting aspects, like pointers, the STL, classes.

    So... am I right? Am I wrong? Who cares! He asked for an opinion, I gave it. I wasn't particularly gentle, true. Caught me in a bad day I guess.
    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.

  5. #20
    Intranasal Heroin User Xterria's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mario F. View Post

    It's more to do with the fact I personally think wanting to learn how to make games by means of learning a programming language is a sure shot way to produce a bad programmer.
    This is in fact quite true, this was my original motivation when I decided to go to Barnes & Noble when I was 11 years old and picked out a C/C++ book, then I came home and registered on this forum. I didn't turn out well, being 20 years old and having the amount of years of programming under my belt I'm a complete moron. Can I program any game I like and finish it if I wanted? Yes, I can get any project done no matter what it is or what I want done. It's just the way I get it done--my style of programming has developed very slowly and I've always refused to do things other people's ways. I can match anybody when they write a program, but when it comes down to it, my programs are going to be very memory inefficient and more hard-coded compared to somebody who has been programming for two years and has read ten programming books and studied non-stop and consequently adapted efficient programming strategies. I have experience under my belt, but that's all I have. I've always wanted the end result worse than learning the means to get there, and as a result I'm a mediocre programmer(in my opinion).
    If you want to program games, your programming language is going to be your damn best friend. You will want it badly. More than your girlfriend. If you learn to love to program, if you really want to learn how to program, if you really study your programming language and try to master every nut and bolt, inspect every dark corner, then yes; You are in your way to become a damn good games programmer.
    You put it perfectly -- you have to learn to love programming. To me at first, I looked at it as a means to an end, a tool(which it is), but after a decade I learned that I have to enjoy and love programming in order to really get that end result I've always desired -- like how an old baby boomer in his retirement loves the tools in his garage he's gathered over the years and can efficiently work on any project he wants and finish it better than most people who are fresh out of school, simply because he's been doing it most his life.
    Why do I know this when I'm not even a games programmer, never was or ever will be? Because games programming is no different from any other type of programming. Same rules. Don't trust me? That's cool. We'll talk in a few years.
    Programming is programming, whether you're a kernel junkie, an OpenGL guru, or somebody who writes software mainly for networking purposes.

  6. #21
    The superhaterodyne twomers's Avatar
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    Mario, you never did finish MURK did you?

  7. #22
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Totally abandoned. Have been working on Mediaeval since pretty much early 2007.

    ... And where have you been? Nice to see you.
    (and what on earth were you Irish people thinking two weeks ago?)
    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.

  8. #23
    The superhaterodyne twomers's Avatar
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    Yeah. I know. I was just rekindling the old memory. I was excited about that game. Are all Portuguese people lazy?
    I've been here and there. Mostly not here, per se. But there? Certainly.
    (what was two weeks ago?)

    I think you made good points in this... but... If someone wanted to learn about programming, why not add a 'fun' factor for free (this could be in the form of programming a game)? If the level of programming required was adequately chosen you could learn about all aspects that would be covered in, say, a banking system, and encoder, file IO projects, etc.

    However, at simple levels I could see people getting mightily frustrated with simple games that lack the sexy feel of modern ones. I reckon people who hear 'games programming' think of the glam and flash and forget about the hair that was torn out in demented frustration.

    Edit: I'm probably missing the point. You're talking about games programming only, right? Rather than programming.
    What are your thoughts for games assignments for classes etc?
    Last edited by twomers; 10-14-2009 at 05:28 PM.

  9. #24
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by twomers View Post
    Are all Portuguese people lazy?
    Not really. More, dependent on government funding

    (what was two weeks ago?)
    Good answer. 'Nough said.
    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. #25
    Hail to the king, baby. Akkernight's Avatar
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    Programming games has the ups and downs like other programming, sometimes you do exciting stuff, sometimes you do boring stuff, I believe this is the case for other programming too? I believe some people here are kinda trying to say "I'm better than you 'cause I make games", this is actually not true, I guess the main thing that makes you better is... Getting things done Meaning, one who gets things done is a better programmer than one who knows the language throughout. Anyways, Game Programming and Other Programming can be compared to drums and guitar. They both have the root stuff in common, which is rythm for these, but they are a little different to play, but best when playing together Don't know if I'm making any sense, kinda tired here.

    I believe that you should code what you enjoy, not code what you get more money off or anything else. Still, most people find Game Development most attractive at first, what happens down the road is all up to the person :P
    Currently research OpenGL

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