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Thread: What do you enjoy about programming?

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    Default What do you enjoy about programming?

    It is just for curiosity, what do you enjoy about programming?


    I only have 4 weeks learning Java and I enjoy it because I can create stuff, but sometimes I'm frustrated that I can't do much yet.

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    For most I think it's the joy of creation and the feelings of joy when your creation does amazing things for you.
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    sometimes I'm frustrated that I can't do much yet
    This is perfectly understandable because programming consists of mastering very small bits of complexity (small enough that they aren't very complex) and then putting them together to create more complex results. If we persist (and if we learn manageable ways of combining the parts) we will achieve the spectacular results we want, but never fast enough.

    We are somewhat in the position of an infant just beginning to pull him or herself up onto two legs. When we were learning to walk we didn't know about the long term benefits of this form of locomotion, so we were spared the frustration of knowing all things we were unable to do. When we fell on our face it was unpleasant but any frustration was momentary and a spur to further attempts.

    The outlook (ability?) weakens with age but when learning programming - or anything - we should at least aim at being like the audacious toddler (and not like the serene guru).
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    That's my goal, to persist until I reach the desired results.
    p.s I liked your answer

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fubarable View Post
    For most I think it's the joy of creation and the feelings of joy when your creation does amazing things for you.
    It's funny when you come to think of it, because a computer can only do very simple stupid things but it can do them very fast and it can do lots of them; it's the result of a lot of stupid simple things that amazes us. We must be reductionists (Descartes) that are amazed by the complexity of a lot of stupid simple things ... would we also be amazed by half of those stupid simple things? one tenth of them? Where does it stop? We most certainly aren't amazed by a single stupid simple thing; or maybe its just the fact that we have created something that does something on its own (ok, we have started it (the program), but then the thing (the computer) does it all on its own).

    kind regards,

    Jos
    cenosillicaphobia: the fear for an empty beer glass

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    would we also be amazed by half of those stupid simple things? one tenth of them? Where does it stop?
    Charles Darwin famously compared the fixed and simple law of gravity governing earth's rotation around the sun with the result of the complex interactions of organisms living on the earth. Whereas in the first case one year merely followed another, in the second "endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved".

    A reductionist account - to the extent that it is sucessful - will provide a causal explanation of how things are (the length of the year, the origin of species) but such an account does not in any way diminish the beauty and wonder of complex results. Indeed understanding the causes adds to and justifies the "grandeur in this view of life".

    So, yes, if we look more and more closely at a complex thing (ecosystem or algorithm) we will eventually arrive at parts that are pretty mundane. But there is a forest as well as trees! If we understand those mundane parts and their interactions then our understanding will inform and extend our sense of the grandeur of the whole.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fubarable View Post
    For most I think it's the joy of creation and the feelings of joy when your creation does amazing things for you.
    This has been in the back of my mind, being turned over, most of the day.

    We have a joy of creation (and discovery, see below) and the amazing things that result. They are obviously connected: creating something that merely results in a NullPointerException is no joy at all! But they are also distinct.

    I have been reading recently about the fast fourier transform. And it seems to me that Gauss, who created an nlogn algorithm for performing a fourier transform (he probably would have said "discovered"), might well have felt joy, pleasure etc. But he had no "amazing things" consequent on his creation! He could not efficiently do image enhancement (there being no photography) and had no need to multiply polynomials so horrendously large that nlogn techniques would have materially helped. The joy would be at understanding that the transform was not as (computationally) complex as first met the eye, the joy would arise from the act of discovery.

    (Only a century and a half later would his algorithm be rediscovered and put to use with amazing results.)

    We aren't all Gausses. Or even close! But we can all create and feel delight in that. I want to wave the flag for those of us whose creations - like the crazy results of a child's woodworking efforts - are less than amazing.
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    I think what I enjoy most is the unquestioning obedience of the computer (OxC000000005 excepted).

    db

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    Quote Originally Posted by DarrylBurke View Post
    I think what I enjoy most is the unquestioning obedience of the computer (OxC000000005 excepted).

    db
    I think Intel should mask out those values in their CPU's address logic; all those values do is generate a SIGSEGV error which only causes problems; also if disks need half a revolution to find a certain sector, I'd suggest those manufacturers mount those read/write heads at the opposite side of the disk platters.

    kind regards,

    Jos (<--- genius)
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