Category Archives: edjercashun

On entering programming in 2022

I recently taught an introduction to Python course, to final-year undergraduate students. These students had little to zero programming experience, and were all expected to get set up with Python (using the Anaconda environment, which we had determined to be … Continue reading

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On self-taught coders

When a programmer says that they are ‘self-taught’ or that they “taught themselves to code”, what do they mean by it? Did they sit down at a computer, with reference to no other materials, and press buttons and click things … Continue reading

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I have some small idea of what I’m doing

I feel partly to blame for the current minor internet shitstorm. But first, some scene-setting. There have long been associations between the programmer community and particular subcultures, some of which have become—not monocultural—at least dominant cultures within the world of … Continue reading

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The challenges of teaching software engineering

I’ve just finished teaching a four-day course introducing software engineering for the first time. My plan is to refine the course (I’m teaching it again in October), and it will eventually become the basis for doctoral training programmes in research … Continue reading

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Ultimate Programmer Super Stack: Last day!

I already wrote about the Ultimate Programmer Super Stack, a huge bundle of books and courses on a range of technologies: Python, JS, Ruby, Java, HTML, node, Aurelia… and APPropriate Behaviour, my book on everything that goes into being a … Continue reading

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Beginner thoughts

Back story: my period of walkabout, in which I went to see the rest of the computing world beyond Apple land, started in November 2014. This was shortly after Swift’s introduction at WWDC 2014. It ended in October 2018, by … Continue reading

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Two Schools

There always seem to be two schools in software, though exactly where the gates are varies. Alan Kay described how Edsger Dijkstra noticed that “the Atlantic has two sides”. It was basically all about how different the approaches to computing … Continue reading

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No True Humpty-Dumpty

Words change meaning. Technical words change meaning. Sometimes, you need to check out a specific commit of a word’s meaning from the version control, to add context to a statement. “I’m talking about Open Source in its early meaning of … Continue reading

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There is no browser, only Zuul

My short-lived first plan for a career was in Physics. That’s what my first degree was in, but I graduated with the career goal “do something that isn’t a D.Phil. in Physics” in mind. I’d got on quite well with … Continue reading

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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 … Continue reading

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