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{ Category Archives } edjercashun

Bottom-up teaching

We’re told that the core idea in computer programming is problem-solving. That one of the benefits of learning about computer programming (one that is not universally accepted) is gaining the skill of problem decomposition. If you look at real teaching of computing, it seems to have more to do with solution composition than problem decomposition. […]

On books

I’d say that if there’s one easy way to summarise how I work, it’s as an information focus. I’m not great at following a solution all the way to the bitter end so you should never let me be a programmer (ahem): when all that’s left is the second 90% of the effort in fixing […]

This is fine

The BBC micro:bit is a tool for introducing young people to programming. It’s a little embedded computer with a few inputs and a matrix of LEDs for output, as well as some control lines. In principle it’s quite easy to use, I made a 1d6 simulator: from microbit import * from random import randint class […]

On the extremes of computer science

I didn’t study computer science at school or university, and still manage to work as a programmer. That is not to say that I don’t need to know some things that are taught on computer science courses. Just this week I’ve had to build a couple of different data structures and understand their running time: […]

“When I had that problem”

A common lie in programming is that every project is new, that no problem has been seen before. This is the reason given for estimates being bad, for plans being bad, for design being bad…for anything other than diving in uninformed being bad. But I’ve noticed that more and more frequently my discussions about problems-technical […]

Learning phases

I’ve been trying to learn things this week (specifically Haskell). So far I’ve been through a lot of different moods, and I thought it’d be handy to write them down so that next time I’m the teacher I can remember what it’s like to be on the receiving end. I’m not sure I (and certainly […]

Why nerd culture must die

http://computinged.wordpress.com/2014/11/13/why-nerd-culture-must-die-not-everyone-can-teach-themselves/ Truth.

Up or to the right

Sometimes in describing a concept X in one domain, someone will ask “oh, is that like X’?” where X’ is the same concept or a very similar one, expressed in a different domain. The quick answer is “Yes”, but that permits a range of interpretations from “X and X’ are the same things in different […]

Why is programming so hard?

I have been reflecting recently on what it was like to learn to program. The problem is, I don’t clearly remember: I do remember that there was a time when I was no good at it. When I could type a program in from INPUT or wherever, and if it ran correctly I was golden. […]

Intra-curricular activities

I’m apparently fascinated by the idea of defining curricula for learning programming. I’ve written about how we need to be careful what we try to pay forward from the way we learned in the past, and I’ve talked about how we do need to pay it forward so that the second hundred years see faster […]