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Mitul Amin
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Hi Jeff, This is a good post, but I am not 100% in agreement. I think the reason people seem to pick sides in this argument is that they have different views on what code is. For example, would you equate Assembly with Html? How about C / C++ with SQL? The people that are pro teaching to code at school are trying to get the next generation to understand the basics of our world so that they are not mystified by the work of others. For example, I would prefer if people learnt how a central heating system works on a broad level so that they don't end up calling a contractor in just to relight the pilot light if it goes out. (I have see this happen personally and it pains me to see this ignorance) In some cases I too have been just as ignorant of such things where I have left it to professionals to do something for me which I should really have learnt to do it myself. Coming back to the point, the developer community generally thinks of coding as in Java or C, etc. which even I would not recommend be taught in schools. However learning to code HTML / CSS can be bring about a new approach to learning which is more experimental than the traditional methods used for other subjects like history or English literature. I think I have a balanced view, and guess what I attribute that to. I am a software engineer. I am not a coder, I am an engineer. The difference I feel is that engineers are problem solvers, builder and makers. Which is a whole lot more than simply coding. Coding is just a means I choose to solve the problems I face. Just my 2 pence (I live in the UK)
Toggle Commented May 15, 2012 on Please Don't Learn to Code at Coding Horror
Context is often forgotten when people think about these things. If you assume a context if plain web content (without floating elements and such), then this approach is great. If you are thinking about writing a book, then structure is more important so that everything can be presented in a consistent style and the content is removed from the formatting. Here I think somthing like DocBook, XML-XSLT, etc. are good given you use a good editor for them. For code, Bret's approach is excellent as it also encourages better programming (smaller chunks of code with single responsibility etc.) For more visual stuff like a modern website that may load content dynamically and bits need to be designed individually to show/hide this content you need a different approach. Here I think the only solution I have seen work is getting youself two monitors and use live preview editors like editing a page in FireBug. Hence there is no "right" answer. A simple WYSIWUG editor for stuff like comments is "just-right" for its content but totally awkward for writing a book. Vice versa DocBook or XML/XSLT is overkill for writing comments in a blog. And neither are good enough for designing a dynamic webapp. Just my 2 cents. Mitul
Toggle Commented Mar 27, 2012 on What You Can't See You Can't Get at Coding Horror
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Mar 27, 2012