New to the idea of programming

Discussion in 'Java' started by Thai, Jan 6, 2011.

  1. Thai

    Thai Guest

    I haven't done any my computer skills are limited to Web Design, Graphics design, some Dos scripting some very low level python. I've done some simple work with hardware I'm pretty web adept but I've never done any programming.
    I was going to start working with Python but when I asked about development on the Android Developers group the response I got back said to try Java. Any help suggestions for someone starting unsure if Java or Python should be my path or if tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for starting out programming.

    Thank you all in advance
     
    Thai, Jan 6, 2011
    #1
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  2. On 05/01/2011 8:39 PM, Thai wrote:
    > I haven't done any my computer skills are limited to Web Design,
    > Graphics design, some Dos scripting some very low level python. I've
    > done some simple work with hardware I'm pretty web adept but I've
    > never done any programming. I was going to start working with Python
    > but when I asked about development on the Android Developers group
    > the response I got back said to try Java. Any help suggestions for
    > someone starting unsure if Java or Python should be my path or if
    > tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for starting out
    > programming.
    >
    > Thank you all in advance


    Programming is hard. Ask yourself if there might not be some easier way
    to make lots of money like becoming a lawyer or doctor.

    If you hate brain teasers, puzzles and riddles, then you're not going to
    like programming.

    If you do want to become a programmer, then please read this blog:
    http://the-programmers-stone.com/the-original-talks/ Follow the
    original talks on the right-hand side. I don't consider his point of
    view "ideal", but it will help you learn how to re-see the world.

    If you don't know how to write a good program, especially in an
    object-oriented manner, start with Python. It's more forgiving, gives
    you instant feedback, and there's lots of "learning to program" websites
    using Python.

    Once you feel comfortable writing good programs, then pick up an
    introductory Java book and DO ALL THE EXERCISES! Personally, I liked
    the Sun Java tutorials.
     
    Travers Naran, Jan 6, 2011
    #2
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  3. On 11-01-06 12:39 AM, Thai wrote:
    > I haven't done any my computer skills are limited to Web Design, Graphics design, some Dos scripting some very low level python. I've done some simple work with hardware I'm pretty web adept but I've never done any programming.
    > I was going to start working with Python but when I asked about development on the Android Developers group the response I got back said to try Java. Any help suggestions for someone starting unsure if Java or Python should be my path or if tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for starting out programming.
    >
    > Thank you all in advance


    Is this a career choice? If so, are you start of career or mid-career?
    And also if so, are you looking to centre your career on programming, or
    is this an enhancement to skills like you describe? Or is this a
    interests & mental recreational choice?

    AHS
     
    Arved Sandstrom, Jan 6, 2011
    #3
  4. Thai

    Natalie Guest

    On Wed, 05 Jan 2011 20:39:45 -0800, Thai wrote:

    > I haven't done any my computer skills are limited to Web Design,
    > Graphics design, some Dos scripting some very low level python. I've
    > done some simple work with hardware I'm pretty web adept but I've never
    > done any programming. I was going to start working with Python but when
    > I asked about development on the Android Developers group the response I
    > got back said to try Java. Any help suggestions for someone starting
    > unsure if Java or Python should be my path or if tackling both is a
    > good/bad idea Or even suggestions for starting out programming.
    >
    > Thank you all in advance


    You indicate you are interested in Android? I'm an Android programmer - I
    have been doing it for a year and a half but when I started, I had very
    little programming experience besides web design and some scripting.

    I started very simply by reading through the Android Fundamentals section
    on the developers website then loading up one of their examples and then
    trying to change it. I then read a book that really helped me understand
    object oriented programming, this is called "object thinking" by Dave
    West. I recommend you read this, but only after having spent a couple of
    months playing around with Android examples and other simple examples you
    see on line and trying to make up your own simple apps, as this book will
    benefit you more once you have already tried yourself to design an app in
    Java (or any other OO lang). When reading existing code, limit yourself
    to tutorials at first and make sure you understand each line. If
    something is unclear, Google is your friend! Then you can read more
    complicated tutorials and code examples, then you can progress to making
    up your own from scratch.

    To answer your other question, no, I wouldn't recommend starting with 2
    languages at first. If you want to program apps for Android, start with
    Java and the Android API. If you aren't sure what you want to program,
    start with Python.

    Good luck with your new adventure, it sure is fun!
     
    Natalie, Jan 6, 2011
    #4
  5. Thai

    Stefan Ram Guest

    TheGunslinger <> writes:
    >However, many colleges and universities are using JAVA to introduce
    >the concepts of Object Oreiented Programming (OOP), and then moving up
    >to OOP with C++ after 1-2 semesters of JAVA.


    A good start is to learn the name of the language: »Java«.
    Java, BTW, is a case-sensitive language.

    >The beauty of both JAVA and C++ is there are IDE (Integrated
    >Development Environments) and SDK (Software Developer Kits) available
    >for free that are more standard to the ISO specs than others.


    Beauty of a programming languages has nothing to do with
    the availability of IDEs for it, but with the expressivity
    of the language proper.
     
    Stefan Ram, Jan 6, 2011
    #5
  6. Thai

    Lew Guest

    On Jan 6, 2:22 pm, TheGunslinger <>
    wrote:
    > On 6 Jan 2011 16:44:46 GMT, -berlin.de (Stefan Ram) wrote:
    >
    > >TheGunslinger <> writes:
    > >>However, many colleges and universities are using JAVA to introduce
    > >>the concepts of Object Oreiented Programming (OOP), and then moving up
    > >>to OOP with C++ after 1-2 semesters of JAVA.

    >
    > >  A good start is to learn the name of the language: Java .
    > >  Java, BTW, is a case-sensitive language.

    >
    > >>The beauty of both JAVA and C++ is there are IDE (Integrated
    > >>Development Environments) and SDK  (Software Developer Kits) available
    > >>for free that are more standard to the ISO specs than others.

    >
    > >  Beauty of a programming languages has nothing to do with
    > >  the availability of IDEs for it, but with the expressivity
    > >  of the language proper.

    >
    > Guess you should take your own advice:: it is called the JDK >> JAVA
    > Developer Kit and NOT Java...
    >


    The name of the language is "Java". The "J" in "JDK" stands for
    "Java", not "JAVA", and the "D" for "Development", not "Developer".
    <http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/index.html>
    "... the JDK (Java Development Kit), ... "

    Note that "Java" is a trademark, and as such its spelling is rigidly
    defined down to case. Note further that two minutes with the
    trademark holder's web site straightens this question out.


    > Besides, do you have an anal fixation of correcting people and
    >


    Do you have an aversion to being correct? You should be falling all
    over yourself thanking him, not being all snarky about it.


    > bullying them into your thought patterns so thay can repeat your
    > mistakes???
    >


    "Bullying"? That's what you're doing. All he did was provide correct
    information. Thank him.

    > IMHO,
    >


    Funny.

    > Take your flames elsewhere, not appreciated or needed.
    >


    You are the one flaming. All he did was provide accurate technical
    information, which is the purpose of this newsgroup. If you don't
    want accurate technical information, you came to the wrong place,
    mister.

    --
    Lew
     
    Lew, Jan 6, 2011
    #6
  7. Thai

    markspace Guest

    On 1/6/2011 1:52 PM, TheGunslinger wrote:

    > No, HE started flaming...
    >
    > His comments were totally OT to the question, JUST like yours.



    There's no rule that says that all comments must be rigidly on topic.
    Discussion here is wide ranging and frequently diverges into other areas
    that are of interest to the posters.

    It can be frustrating to be corrected, but it really is better to learn
    to be accurate in your written communication. It's often the first
    thing a potential employer or customer sees from you, and if your
    spelling is incorrect and your choice of wording seems imprecise, it can
    make a big negative impression. Do try to be correct at all times, it's
    really is important for a professional Java programmer.
     
    markspace, Jan 6, 2011
    #7
  8. Thai

    Lew Guest

    TheGunslinger wrote:
    >>> Take your flames elsewhere, not appreciated or needed.


    PLONK, shnook!

    --
    Lew
    Ceci n'est pas une pipe.
     
    Lew, Jan 7, 2011
    #8
  9. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 06-01-2011 14:22, TheGunslinger wrote:
    > On 6 Jan 2011 16:44:46 GMT, -berlin.de (Stefan Ram) wrote:
    >> TheGunslinger<> writes:
    >>> However, many colleges and universities are using JAVA to introduce
    >>> the concepts of Object Oreiented Programming (OOP), and then moving up
    >>> to OOP with C++ after 1-2 semesters of JAVA.

    >>
    >> A good start is to learn the name of the language: »Java«.
    >> Java, BTW, is a case-sensitive language.
    >>
    >>> The beauty of both JAVA and C++ is there are IDE (Integrated
    >>> Development Environments) and SDK (Software Developer Kits) available
    >>> for free that are more standard to the ISO specs than others.

    >>
    >> Beauty of a programming languages has nothing to do with
    >> the availability of IDEs for it, but with the expressivity
    >> of the language proper.

    >
    > Guess you should take your own advice:: it is called the JDK>> JAVA
    > Developer Kit and NOT Java...


    Maybe the 10 year olds in the school yard were impressed
    when you came up with fast lies.

    But no so in cljp.

    SUN/Oracle call it "Java Development Kit".

    Not all uppercase JAVA.

    And not "Developer".

    > Besides, do you have an anal fixation of correcting people and
    > bullying them into your thought patterns so thay can repeat your
    > mistakes???


    Well - he was not mistaken. You were.

    > Take your flames elsewhere, not appreciated or needed.


    You started the flaming in this thread.

    May I suggest that you take it elsewhere.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 7, 2011
    #9
  10. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 06-01-2011 00:43, Travers Naran wrote:
    > If you do want to become a programmer, then please read this blog:
    > http://the-programmers-stone.com/the-original-talks/ Follow the original
    > talks on the right-hand side. I don't consider his point of view
    > "ideal", but it will help you learn how to re-see the world.


    If he want to learn Java, then he should read something about Java.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 7, 2011
    #10
  11. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 05-01-2011 23:39, Thai wrote:
    > I haven't done any my computer skills are limited to Web Design,
    > Graphics design, some Dos scripting some very low level python. I've
    > done some simple work with hardware I'm pretty web adept but I've
    > never done any programming. I was going to start working with Python
    > but when I asked about development on the Android Developers group
    > the response I got back said to try Java. Any help suggestions for
    > someone starting unsure if Java or Python should be my path or if
    > tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for starting out
    > programming.


    If you want to program Android, then you should pick Java.

    Start by learning general Java.

    Buy a Java book and/or read the SUN/Oracle Java tutorial.

    Then go to Android.

    Again buy a book and/or use the material on the internet.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 7, 2011
    #11
  12. Thai

    Roedy Green Guest

    On Wed, 5 Jan 2011 20:39:45 -0800 (PST), Thai <>
    wrote, quoted or indirectly quoted someone who said :

    >I was going to start working with Python but when I asked about development=
    > on the Android Developers group the response I got back said to try Java. =
    >Any help suggestions for someone starting unsure if Java or Python should b=
    >e my path or if tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for st=
    >arting out programming.


    Java is more strict. It will teach you better habits and it will be
    easier to figure out why your programs are not working. Python is a
    sort of sloppy shorthand for quick and dirty rapid prototype
    programming. That is an exaggeration, but I do that to make the
    difference clear.

    --
    Roedy Green Canadian Mind Products
    http://mindprod.com
    To err is human, but to really foul things up requires a computer.
    ~ Farmer's Almanac
    It is breathtaking how a misplaced comma in a computer program can
    shred megabytes of data in seconds.
     
    Roedy Green, Jan 7, 2011
    #12
  13. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 07-01-2011 08:35, Roedy Green wrote:
    > On Wed, 5 Jan 2011 20:39:45 -0800 (PST), Thai<>
    > wrote, quoted or indirectly quoted someone who said :
    >> I was going to start working with Python but when I asked about development=
    >> on the Android Developers group the response I got back said to try Java. =
    >> Any help suggestions for someone starting unsure if Java or Python should b=
    >> e my path or if tackling both is a good/bad idea Or even suggestions for st=
    >> arting out programming.

    >
    > Java is more strict. It will teach you better habits and it will be
    > easier to figure out why your programs are not working. Python is a
    > sort of sloppy shorthand for quick and dirty rapid prototype
    > programming. That is an exaggeration, but I do that to make the
    > difference clear.


    Python as being useful for prototyping is one of those
    myths that seems very persistent among programmers that
    do not program in Python.

    I don't think I have ever seen it used that way in real
    life.

    There is among other a small web site known as Youtube
    that is based on Python.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 8, 2011
    #13
  14. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 07-01-2011 03:01, Chris Uppal wrote:
    > Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    >>> http://the-programmers-stone.com/the-original-talks/ Follow the original
    >>> talks on the right-hand side. I don't consider his point of view
    >>> "ideal", but it will help you learn how to re-see the world.

    >>
    >> If he want to learn Java, then he should read something about Java.

    >
    > As well. Not "instead".


    Unless the person is very academic, then I believe that
    it would be best to actual start learning Java before
    diving into the more philosophical views on programming.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 8, 2011
    #14
  15. On 01/07/2011 08:26 PM, Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    > Python as being useful for prototyping is one of those
    > myths that seems very persistent among programmers that
    > do not program in Python.


    Python is indeed useful for prototyping, but that does not imply that it
    not also useful for more powerful things.

    Having done a great deal of work in Python, I find it is most useful for
    smaller applications or scripts (and this includes web applications).

    --
    Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not
    tried it. -- Donald E. Knuth
     
    Joshua Cranmer, Jan 8, 2011
    #15
  16. On 07/01/2011 5:27 PM, Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    > On 07-01-2011 03:01, Chris Uppal wrote:
    >> Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    >>>> http://the-programmers-stone.com/the-original-talks/ Follow the
    >>>> original
    >>>> talks on the right-hand side. I don't consider his point of view
    >>>> "ideal", but it will help you learn how to re-see the world.
    >>>
    >>> If he want to learn Java, then he should read something about Java.

    >>
    >> As well. Not "instead".

    >
    > Unless the person is very academic, then I believe that
    > it would be best to actual start learning Java before
    > diving into the more philosophical views on programming.


    Then he will FAIL and become frustrated and give up. I've seen this
    with my own two-eyes, Arne. Some people have a "natural" aptitude to
    code, but most ordinary people do not, grow frustrated and give up.
    Part of my day job is to help these people cross that threshold.

    Much like art and music, it's an aptitude that has to be cultivated, and
    the first step is to change the way you view the world. And actually,
    it doesn't take that long. Or at least that long to read what you need
    to know to begin reshaping the way you think.

    I believe it is a myth that people are "natural born programmers". I
    believe you can teach people to "see" how to solve a problem by
    programming just as one can teach ordinary people to draw (Example:
    "Drawing with the Right Side of the Brain") and play music.

    I agree with you that Python is not a prototyping language -- it is a
    full & proper language. But it has a low barrier to entry, you can make
    good, useful programs from the get go, and the habits and "seeing" you
    learn in Python is universal, IMHO.

    Java is nice, but it's kind of like a programming language designed by
    lawyers. There is a steeper learning curve before you can become
    productive in Java because you have to know a whole lot of stuff before
    you actually start learning Java. Just as there's a whole body of law
    you need to learn before you can properly interpret the law.
     
    Travers Naran, Jan 8, 2011
    #16
  17. On 11-01-08 07:15 AM, Chris Uppal wrote:
    > Travers Naran wrote:
    >
    >> Java is nice, but it's kind of like a programming language designed by
    >> lawyers. There is a steeper learning curve before you can become
    >> productive in Java because you have to know a whole lot of stuff before
    >> you actually start learning Java.

    >
    > It's not only that, but there are a whole load of hoops you have to jump
    > through to get anything done in Java. They may make sense to more experienced
    > programmers, who have the background to see /why/ the hoops are there (what
    > mistakes they are saving you from, what benefits they bring), but if you are
    > new to programming, then they are just extra "magic incantations" that you have
    > to learn.
    >
    > Python is reasonably clean (unlike some popular dynamic languages), and
    > reasonably free from "hoops"; as such I can see good reasons to start with
    > Python if the aim is to become (or at least to make a start at becoming) a
    > /programmer/. Java looks like a poor place to start in comparison.
    >
    > Of course, if the aim is to become a /Java programmer/ -- a much more
    > restricted, but much more targeted ambition -- then one can make a
    > correspondingly stronger case for starting with Java. Whether the benefits of
    > starting where you mean to end up overweigh the downsides of having to deal
    > with the mess from day one is open (at least, /I/ don't know of a killer
    > argument on either side).
    >
    > -- chris


    I generally agree with both you and Travers. I'll add this - Travers
    mentioned "natural born programmers". There certainly _are_ a fair few
    people with natural aptitude for programming, although they are a
    minority of the population. Some have moderate aptitude, some great.
    It's not related directly to IQ but to some creative variant of
    problem-solving intelligence, I think, but I'm not getting into
    that...what matters is that (1) many people don't get it at all, (2) a
    few get it completely and quickly, and (3) some get it slowly but
    adequately.

    I surmise that with group #1 it doesn't matter anyway (and never will),
    and with group #2 it doesn't matter much either. It's with group #3 -
    the majority of working programmers - that it does make a difference
    which language gets chosen first. And then arguments such as those
    presented both of you come into play.

    Personally, if I were teaching a novice with some promise, I'd pick
    Python over Java as a starter language. IMO the ability of a person to
    pick up adequate coding skills in at least 2 languages, within 6 months,
    from a standing start, is an indicator of their future success. I get
    worried about people who feel the need to start with Java because (1)
    that's their target professional programming language, and (2) they
    don't think they can handle more.

    AHS
     
    Arved Sandstrom, Jan 8, 2011
    #17
  18. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 08-01-2011 00:09, Joshua Cranmer wrote:
    > On 01/07/2011 08:26 PM, Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    >> Python as being useful for prototyping is one of those
    >> myths that seems very persistent among programmers that
    >> do not program in Python.

    >
    > Python is indeed useful for prototyping, but that does not imply that it
    > not also useful for more powerful things.
    >
    > Having done a great deal of work in Python, I find it is most useful for
    > smaller applications or scripts (and this includes web applications).


    I have seen it used for both scripts and web apps.

    But I don't think I have ever seen it used for prototyping.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 8, 2011
    #18
  19. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 08-01-2011 08:53, Arved Sandstrom wrote:
    > Personally, if I were teaching a novice with some promise, I'd pick
    > Python over Java as a starter language.


    It will enable them to focus more on programming logic
    than on data types and various rules for those.

    But it is a double edged sword. They may be up for a pretty
    bad experience when they move to a more strict language.

    > IMO the ability of a person to
    > pick up adequate coding skills in at least 2 languages, within 6 months,
    > from a standing start, is an indicator of their future success.


    6 months is not much for learning programming.

    > I get
    > worried about people who feel the need to start with Java because (1)
    > that's their target professional programming language, and (2) they
    > don't think they can handle more.


    If the driver for learning programming is a wish to program
    their Android phone, then there are some logic in starting
    with Java.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 8, 2011
    #19
  20. Thai

    Arne Vajhøj Guest

    On 08-01-2011 03:20, Travers Naran wrote:
    > On 07/01/2011 5:27 PM, Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    >> On 07-01-2011 03:01, Chris Uppal wrote:
    >>> Arne Vajhøj wrote:
    >>>>> http://the-programmers-stone.com/the-original-talks/ Follow the
    >>>>> original
    >>>>> talks on the right-hand side. I don't consider his point of view
    >>>>> "ideal", but it will help you learn how to re-see the world.
    >>>>
    >>>> If he want to learn Java, then he should read something about Java.
    >>>
    >>> As well. Not "instead".

    >>
    >> Unless the person is very academic, then I believe that
    >> it would be best to actual start learning Java before
    >> diving into the more philosophical views on programming.

    >
    > Then he will FAIL and become frustrated and give up. I've seen this with
    > my own two-eyes, Arne. Some people have a "natural" aptitude to code,
    > but most ordinary people do not, grow frustrated and give up. Part of my
    > day job is to help these people cross that threshold.


    Most people actually learn programming by learning programming
    not about what programming is.

    So your claim that they will fail is observable false.

    > Much like art and music, it's an aptitude that has to be cultivated, and
    > the first step is to change the way you view the world. And actually, it
    > doesn't take that long. Or at least that long to read what you need to
    > know to begin reshaping the way you think.


    That is not what young people interested in programming
    want to learn.

    Arne
     
    Arne Vajhøj, Jan 9, 2011
    #20
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