U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Celebrating Veterans Day!
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology > Computers
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 03-07-2014, 09:27 AM
 
Location: Reno
843 posts, read 1,875,807 times
Reputation: 584

Advertisements

Very good points adyn... Dilbert calls it "The Knack".

A few decades ago I was teaching a class at a diploma mill once (figured I'd try it out), I spend an entire class trying to explain arrays. About 3 people really got it (in the first few minutes), maybe 30% understood the concept enough to use it, the rest didn't get it.. never did. I failed a lot of students.

When the dean asked me to teach again I told him I would on the condition that they go out to a grocery store, pick up one of those magazines with logic puzzle.. find the easiest one and have completion of that be a requirement to enter the class. That didn't fly, so I never came back.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-08-2014, 02:46 PM
 
1,009 posts, read 1,561,461 times
Reputation: 846
What really gets me is sometimes you get into the habit of thinking about things so much that you overthink simple problems.

For instance, right now I'm helping with a commission system and I was tasked with the check writing page the other day. If the person doesn't get checks (direct deposit instead), we have to determine how they want their money deposited. They could have multiple banks to deposit or multiple accounts (80% checking, 20% savings is typical). Could be 1, could be 100. So I sat there for what seemed like 3 weeks trying to figure out how the hell I was going to try to get the program to split the check amount correctly without shorting the person (obviously if the # rounds and they lose a penny, the program fails fundamentally). What if the have 8 banks? What if their percentages are 2.25% to this bank, 8.19% to that bank, and so on?

Well, finally I felt a little too unproductive and called our lead programmer. He joins my joinme session and within 3 minutes he had a working, simplistic linq statement that did it with the help of a variable to store the running and current totals. As I sat and watched him type away, it all instantly made sense. It was clean, effective and simple.

I felt like an idiot, haha. I'm not great with linq just yet (or anything really, I've never been to school for this stuff, my boss just saw an interest and dumped me into the deep end) but it still made me feel just about worthless. He's pretty damn good though, so I try not to be too hard on myself.

Now I'm working in Crystal to build reports for said check writing page.... I hate reports and I hate working on weekends, but deadlines are deadlines. Doesn't help that our version of crystal is 9 or 10 years old.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-16-2014, 06:55 PM
 
Location: Ohio
229 posts, read 294,163 times
Reputation: 423
In my limited experience, I found VB pretty easy for learning OOP. But I've found that many programmers don't like VB that much.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-19-2014, 02:05 PM
 
Location: At my house in my state
638 posts, read 739,903 times
Reputation: 672
I learned C first, got a solid grip on the whole language. When I transferred over to OOP(java) it was very easy. The initial learning of a language is what is hard.

For me, C took at least 6 months before I felt somewhat comfortable in the language. Even to this day there are things I learn about that language that I had no idea were possible.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-21-2014, 09:59 PM
 
1,009 posts, read 1,561,461 times
Reputation: 846
At what point do you define yourself as "proficient" at a language? When I'm working by myself I feel like I do pretty well but sometimes I get stuck (a lot of times, really) so off to google I go. Sometimes I can't find what I'm looking for, although I know exactly what I want to do. I will sit for an hour or more trying to figure it out and I just can't. I call up my lead programmer and he figures it out in under 30 seconds. In the story earlier in this thread, you can kind of see my strife.

Is he the chosen one of programming or is he run-of-the-mill as far as programmers go and I'm just a pleb? I don't have any other experience except for this one guy. I've written several sites but usually with his help. I don't need a crutch and I feel like I use him as one. He always assures me that he is in a constant state of "how the hell do I do this" but I've never seen it in the years I've known him.

Sorry if this derails the thread too much.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-21-2014, 10:09 PM
 
24,503 posts, read 35,952,320 times
Reputation: 12847
Quote:
Originally Posted by adyn View Post
At what point do you define yourself as "proficient" at a language? When I'm working by myself I feel like I do pretty well but sometimes I get stuck (a lot of times, really) so off to google I go.
I got, what I consider proficient, at C++ and JavaScript at Google, myself. I worked there for a bit on early versions of Chrome. Google creates a great environment to master technologies. I've worked for several tech companies, and don't consider this unique to Google.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-21-2014, 10:16 PM
 
1,009 posts, read 1,561,461 times
Reputation: 846
My company is not a tech one, I work for a realty company. I have zero background and was basically just dumped in with literally no training or prior experience. I just told my boss I'd like to do it someday and he took that as an opportunity to gain a jr programmer. Saying that, where I am now, I feel like I've done well, but if my company went under tomorrow, I can't determine whether or not I could get a job in the same field somewhere else. Before I did this I was desktop support.

Also by "off to google I go" I mean I google to search for my answers, just to be clear.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-22-2014, 12:15 AM
 
24,503 posts, read 35,952,320 times
Reputation: 12847
Quote:
Originally Posted by adyn View Post

Also by "off to google I go" I mean I google to search for my answers, just to be clear.
I misunderstood.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-22-2014, 07:48 AM
 
Location: Wandering.
3,544 posts, read 5,676,746 times
Reputation: 2654
Quote:
Originally Posted by adyn View Post
At what point do you define yourself as "proficient" at a language? When I'm working by myself I feel like I do pretty well but sometimes I get stuck (a lot of times, really) so off to google I go. Sometimes I can't find what I'm looking for, although I know exactly what I want to do. I will sit for an hour or more trying to figure it out and I just can't. I call up my lead programmer and he figures it out in under 30 seconds. In the story earlier in this thread, you can kind of see my strife.

Is he the chosen one of programming or is he run-of-the-mill as far as programmers go and I'm just a pleb? I don't have any other experience except for this one guy. I've written several sites but usually with his help. I don't need a crutch and I feel like I use him as one. He always assures me that he is in a constant state of "how the hell do I do this" but I've never seen it in the years I've known him.

Sorry if this derails the thread too much.

Over time you'll get better; you'll run up against more walls, solve more problems, build more complex things, and you'll lean more bits and pieces. It's not that he's the chosen one, just that he's solved a particular set of problems enough times to know how to deal with it.


A lot of the learning curve is really just learning nomenclature, and concepts. Once you have those two things down, the Google searches get cleaner.


Any time you feel like you've really got it sorted out, you can always find things you don't know, and get a reminder of just how little you really know! The technology and tools change as fast as you can learn.


That's not a bad thing, it's just the nature of the beast.


A couple of things that helped me in the early days (and still do today):

I subscribe to a number of blogs that focus on my areas of development, and several mailing lists on my language (although these have gotten pretty poor with the growth of Stack Overflow). If you are into Reddit, there are are bot .NET and C# subs there that get daily traffic. You'll get the benefit of lots of exposure to questions from both inexperienced and experienced programers, and seeing answers and concepts. Even if you don't understand everything, IMO it's good exposure.

I also try to go to my monthly .NET user group meetings and to regional Code Camps to get extra exposure, especially to newer things or concepts. The Code Camps in particular are great as they tend to have tracks in a variety of areas, and at different skill levels.

INETA NorAm - Browse User Groups

Search for "Your city" Code Camp, or for the nearest large city if you aren't in one.

Conference << seems to be most appropriate to you ...
Conference << last year, so have a complete agenda to give you an idea of what they normally offer.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-24-2014, 10:53 AM
 
Location: SoCal
6,118 posts, read 9,723,900 times
Reputation: 5942
Quote:
Originally Posted by adyn View Post
At what point do you define yourself as "proficient" at a language? When I'm working by myself I feel like I do pretty well but sometimes I get stuck (a lot of times, really) so off to google I go. Sometimes I can't find what I'm looking for, although I know exactly what I want to do. I will sit for an hour or more trying to figure it out and I just can't. I call up my lead programmer and he figures it out in under 30 seconds. In the story earlier in this thread, you can kind of see my strife.

Is he the chosen one of programming or is he run-of-the-mill as far as programmers go and I'm just a pleb? I don't have any other experience except for this one guy. I've written several sites but usually with his help. I don't need a crutch and I feel like I use him as one. He always assures me that he is in a constant state of "how the hell do I do this" but I've never seen it in the years I've known him.

Sorry if this derails the thread too much.
I'll be retiring in the next few months. After this many years, I'm plenty proficient. Sometimes I'm like your lead programmer and can solve someone's problems in a few seconds. But sometimes we all *still* get stuck and go to google for help.

A mentor once advised me to struggle with an issue for up to 20 minutes, and then go seek help. There's no point in wasting time continuing to struggle if someone else has already solved the problem and can provide a solution.

See whether there's a sample exam for a certification in the language you're working with. If you can pass that, you can confidently claim to be proficient.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology > Computers
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:31 PM.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top