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Thread: Coding Language

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    Coding Language

    Hello! I'm interested in programming, but I don't know which language to start with. My main goal is to create a program like a area finder of a rectangle and then move on to more complicated things. Any suggestions on what language I should learn?

    Side note: Is it possible to create programs and make them downloadable on the web?

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    I'm extremely knowledgeable about getting started programming. I started with Java. However, I've heard Python is a good one to start with.

    Yes, you can make programs downloadable. You can either compile your source code to an executable file, or you can post the source, and let people compile it themselves.

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    Regular Coder brad211987's Avatar
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    I'm a fan of Ruby and Java myself. Both are object oriented languages, and have a lot to offer someone new to programming for guidance in the way of books, forums, online tutorials etc... Ruby is similar to python, and is probably what I would recommend to get started with, as it is very easy to move to more complicated problems with it. Java is great as well, it just takes a little bit more time to get used to the syntax.

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    Java is not a good language to start with.

    Java is an easy language to learn, but hard to master.
    This is because most people who start with Java have no real understanding of how pointers, reference pointers, memory, etc work. They also do not have a solid understanding of what OO is.

    A good language to start with is C: this is because this language REALLY teaches you memory management, if not anything else.

    A good language to learn OO would be UML. Play around with Rational Rose a bit and read the UML spec sheet.

    I would only advise a person to learn Java after they have completed both the above steps (can learn in literally 3 hours, if they've done their work solidly for the above 2 tasks).

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    Quote Originally Posted by jkim View Post
    A good language to start with is C: this is because this language REALLY teaches you memory management, if not anything else.

    A good language to learn OO would be UML. Play around with Rational Rose a bit and read the UML spec sheet.
    Or you could just use C++ if you wanted to learn OOP and memory management. Plus then you get useful things like templates then.
    OracleGuy

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    definitely c++. if you can master c++, then all of the other languages are easy to learn.

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    Regular Coder Aradon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakbo View Post
    definitely c++. if you can master c++, then all of the other languages are easy to learn.
    That's not true at all. Lisp, for example, is a completely different can of worms then c++ and requires a different outlook in order to use it effectively.

    No matter what language you start on, you want to start by learning the basics of the language, then more abstract concepts that you can use in other languages.

    You can easily start in Java, despite what most people's think. The issue is that you also learn the concepts about what is going on behind Java as you're learning it. Books help in this aspect, as well as some online tutorials. If you do that while learning Java (which is what I did) then you'll be just as good as any person that starts with C++ if not better. Not to mention that Sun provides a great beginning programming guide in Java.

    In the end, however, it doesn't matter what modern language you pick, as long as you commit yourself to learning about the language fully so that you can bridge it to other languages. Don't learn any language halfway and expect to use what you've learned in other languages.
    "To iterate is human, to recurse divine." -L. Peter Deutsch

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aradon View Post
    That's not true at all. Lisp, for example, is a completely different can of worms then c++ and requires a different outlook in order to use it effectively.

    No matter what language you start on, you want to start by learning the basics of the language, then more abstract concepts that you can use in other languages.

    You can easily start in Java, despite what most people's think. The issue is that you also learn the concepts about what is going on behind Java as you're learning it. Books help in this aspect, as well as some online tutorials. If you do that while learning Java (which is what I did) then you'll be just as good as any person that starts with C++ if not better. Not to mention that Sun provides a great beginning programming guide in Java.

    In the end, however, it doesn't matter what modern language you pick, as long as you commit yourself to learning about the language fully so that you can bridge it to other languages. Don't learn any language halfway and expect to use what you've learned in other languages.
    what's a beginning programmer going to need lisp for? isn't lisp sort of confined to the realm of artificial intelligence? that's the impression i'm under, anyway.

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    Regular Coder Aradon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakbo View Post
    what's a beginning programmer going to need lisp for? isn't lisp sort of confined to the realm of artificial intelligence? that's the impression i'm under, anyway.
    Lisp's only confinement is that with which programmers give it.

    There have been a few famous programs that have been written in Lisp. The first Yahoo Store was written completely in Lisp just to name one.

    It just went the way of Ada. It is used by a small subgroup of people that will defend it to the end of the world despite it's flaws of use.

    "To iterate is human, to recurse divine." -L. Peter Deutsch

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aradon View Post
    Lisp's only confinement is that with which programmers give it.

    There have been a few famous programs that have been written in Lisp. The first Yahoo Store was written completely in Lisp just to name one.

    It just went the way of Ada. It is used by a small subgroup of people that will defend it to the end of the world despite it's flaws of use.

    interesting. are there any good tutorials out there i can teach myself lisp with? also, do i need any software in order to compile and execute my programs?

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    Supreme Overlord Spookster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakbo View Post
    are there any good tutorials out there i can teach myself lisp with?
    Don't do it. Run away. Run away while you still can.
    Spookster
    CodingForums Supreme Overlord
    All Hail Spookster

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    Senior Coder TheShaner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spookster View Post
    Don't do it. Run away. Run away while you still can.
    Wise words indeed! I learned both LISP and PROLOG in college and then wondered whether I was in Wonderland or not.

    I just created this thread to start some discussion and guidance for learning how to program.

    -Shane

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spookster View Post
    Don't do it. Run away. Run away while you still can.
    lol. it's too late.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aradon View Post
    You can easily start in Java, despite what most people's think. The issue is that you also learn the concepts about what is going on behind Java as you're learning it. Books help in this aspect, as well as some online tutorials. If you do that while learning Java (which is what I did) then you'll be just as good as any person that starts with C++ if not better.
    I disagree.

    You can't learn what goes behind the scenes with Java. You can study as much theory as you like, and you still won't have a clue.

    C, or C++ for that matter, FORCES you to manage your memory well. If you don't; well... you're stuffed and your program falls apart.

    Java is sooo easy and user friendly, that a half-brained nincompoop can get a program working. How good it is behind the scenes can only be judged by someone who has vast experience in both C/C++ and strong OO concepts.

    As for a language (i.e. C++) teaching a person OO, I disagree again. Programming languages do not teach OO. Modelling languages (UML, OOML, etc) help teach OO. OO is a concept in the theoretical domain, and it's upto the programmer to interpret and apply it to his/her code.

    In my 10 year career, I've yet to see 1 single competant Java programmer that started his programming study with the Java language.

    Java is a bad starting language, because Java allows programs that are written bad to be run without a hitch.

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    Regular Coder Aradon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkim View Post
    I disagree.

    You can't learn what goes behind the scenes with Java. You can study as much theory as you like, and you still won't have a clue.

    C, or C++ for that matter, FORCES you to manage your memory well. If you don't; well... you're stuffed and your program falls apart.

    Java is sooo easy and user friendly, that a half-brained nincompoop can get a program working. How good it is behind the scenes can only be judged by someone who has vast experience in both C/C++ and strong OO concepts.

    As for a language (i.e. C++) teaching a person OO, I disagree again. Programming languages do not teach OO. Modelling languages (UML, OOML, etc) help teach OO. OO is a concept in the theoretical domain, and it's upto the programmer to interpret and apply it to his/her code.

    In my 10 year career, I've yet to see 1 single competant Java programmer that started his programming study with the Java language.

    Java is a bad starting language, because Java allows programs that are written bad to be run without a hitch.
    I'll be honest. I'm unsure how to approach this correctly without going into something that is best served for PM discussion. I'm sorry for your bad experience with Java Programmers. Perhaps the people you've met people who have come from incomplete programs or have been sub-par programmers in general. However an experience of few is no need to generalize in such a way.

    I'm unsure of why you seem to have such a hatred of this language as a beginning course. You claim that you can't study what goes on behind Java but this is a completely false statement. Java's memory management, reference/pointer use, and general behind the scenes action can indeed be studied. They do it in universities (which I might add are following a trend of moving to learning Java FIRST)

    I mean, you said it yourself:
    Java is an easy language to learn, but hard to master.
    And I'd hate to break it to you, but C++ is the same way. Memory management, dangling references, messing with dynamic memory pointers, realizing you can go beyond your array, all things that come with mastering. But they aren't necessary to build a C++ program.

    I teach basic C++ courses presently (and btw I started my programming career with Java) and I can tell you that there are people who can catch onto the language quick, but not master the concepts of the language.

    In the end it's the Programmers, not the language that determine what occurs. So please don't feed us any elitism about how C and C++ is so great. There is no one language to rule them all. There is only situation and which language will work best.

    I personally think that any programmer should learn both languages. I also think that it doesn't matter which language you start out with first. As long as you take the time to learn everything about the language as well as the abstract concepts surrounding the science (a term I use loosely) of programming, then it doesn't matter.

    Granted learning assembly first may not give you everything you need. But it sure would be interesting once you got to the higher generation languages and learned how much easier things are now!

    And to end this discussion for me, two fun quotes:

    "In C++ it's harder to shoot yourself in the foot, but when you do, you blow off your whole leg." — Bjarne Stroustrup.

    "Java: it's the language that spawned a thousand bad puns. Every computer corporation worth, well, beans, has come up with some Java-derived cliche, from the coffee genre (Latte, Cafe, Espresso, Java Beans, Joe) to Indonesian geography (Jakarta, Krakatoa)." - Unknown
    Last edited by Aradon; 08-02-2007 at 08:14 AM.
    "To iterate is human, to recurse divine." -L. Peter Deutsch


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