Programming really isn’t that difficult or mysterious. If you can write step-bystep instructions directing someone to your house, you can write a program. The hardest part about programming is identifying all the little problems that make up the big problem that you’re trying to solve.
Because computers are completely stupid, you need to tell them how to do everything. If you’re giving a friend instructions to get to your house, for example, you may write down the following information: 1. Go south on Highway I-5. 2. Get off at the Sweetwater Road exit. 3.
Turn right at the light. 4. Turn into the second driveway on the left. Of course, if you try giving these instructions to a computer, the computer gets confused and wants to know the following additional information: 1. Where do I start and exactly how far south do I drive down Highway I-5? 2. How do I recognize the Sweetwater Road exit, and how do I get off at this exit? 3.
After I turn right at the light, how far to the right do I turn, and do you mean the traffic light or the street light on the corner? 4. After I turn into the second driveway on the left, what do I do next? Park the car? Honk the horn? Gun the engine and accelerate through your garage door?
You need to tell computers how to do everything, which can make giving them instructions as aggravating and frustrating as telling children what to do. Unless you specify everything that you want the computer to do and exactly how to do it, the computer just plain doesn’t do what you want it to do.
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