[FoRK] Why Johnny Can't Code

Andy Armstrong < andy at hexten.net > on > Thu Sep 14 04:03:19 PDT 2006

On 14 Sep 2006, at 11:44, Dave Long wrote:
>> I can't talk about this stuff for long - it makes me too sad and too
>> angry.
> ... hence Kragen's $10 computer project, I believe.  (and certainly  
> part of the reasoning behind my turtle-graphics data: URI, even if  
> the latter was inspired more by the functional than the imperative)

Whasat? I missed it.

> But as for the original rant -- wtf, is Brin high?

Whenever I encounter someone who's curious about computers I find  
myself wanting to teach them from first principals - use a light  
switch as an example of a 1 bit memory device - stuff like that. It's  
probably insane and counterproductive - but I don't really know where  
else to start. My prejudice is that you need at least some  
understanding of that stuff as a foundation for all other  
understanding - although I've seen adequate evidence that you don't.  
I guess maybe that's where he's coming from too.

I was skimming Programming Python last night and came across the bit  
where Mark Lutz confesses he doesn't know the geometry for drawing a  
circle. I guess it doesn't matter but I found I couldn't get past  
that and take him seriously again. Everything else I read was  
tainted. Again, my prejudice - revealed here only to reach out to  
others who may share the affliction.

And for giggles here's my BBC Micro 6502 Second Processor emulator in  


Andy Armstrong, hexten.net

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