Welcome Guest.   Make a donation to an author on the site April 24, 2014, 12:24:42 PM  *

Please login or register.
Or did you miss your validation email?


Login with username and password (forgot your password?)
Why not become a lifetime supporting member of the site with a one-time donation of any amount? Your donation entitles you to a ton of additional benefits, including access to exclusive discounts and downloads, the ability to enter monthly free software drawings, and a single non-expiring license key for all of our programs.


You must sign up here before you can post and access some areas of the site. Registration is totally free and confidential.
 
The N.A.N.Y. Challenge 2011! Download 30+ custom programs!
   
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
Author Topic: The exponential rate at which you seem aquire programming knowledge.  (Read 2798 times)
Eóin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 1,400


O'Callaghan

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« on: September 20, 2006, 07:10:37 AM »

Hello, I’ve noticed a trend in the rate at which I’m acquiring knowledge for programming, certainly over the last few years and it seems to follow an exponential-style graph of knowledge.

I better explain what I mean be ‘knowledge’ and this is tricky so feel free to suggest alternative definitions; I’d like to narrow this notion down better. I’d be referring to the planning stage of a new project/feature to existing project whereby you work out, in your head or through ‘cowboy’ programming, what the problems are which you’ll be likely to face. I’m defining ‘knowledge’ to be the cases where you already know a very good solution to those problems. I want to be very general here and so solutions could be something you solved before, or perhaps you know a third party library or maybe you simply know a book or site that will aid you.

The key thing I’m getting at here is the rate at which this knowledge increases. I’ve been programming for over ten years, I started young perhaps but that may not have made any difference. What I’ve noticed is that over the past year I feel like I learned more than in say the previous nine. In the year before that I think I’d learned more than the previous eight.

See what I’m getting at? Anyone else get that feeling too?
Logged

Interviewer: Is there anything you don't like?
Bjarne Stroustrup: Marketing hype as a substitute for technical argument. Thoughtless adherence to dogma. Pride in ignorance.
mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 32,700



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2006, 07:23:30 AM »

While i wouldnt say i feel the same exact way, i will say this, which i think is related.

My experience has been that programming is mostly a matter of learning basic skills.
After 5 or 10 years of coding, you know enough about programming that you are thinking in a meta language and it doesn't matter all that much what the target language output is.  This means that getting proficient in a new language is easy and fast.

What's also true though is that it's common to meet a very new programmer who has read just a book on language X, and proclaims "I know X", without ever having written more than a handfull of lines of code in any language.  They may know some of the rules of the language syntax but they probably can't use it effectively.
Logged
nudone
Cody's Creator
Columnist
***
Posts: 4,116



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2006, 08:03:35 AM »

i'd apply something similar to learning most 'complex' things. (i think we might have mentioned it before on the forum.)

from my own experience and that which i've noticed in people around me one tends to go through certain stages of 'mastering' a subject.

like layers peeling off an onion. you learn the basics of a subject and believe for a short time afterwards that you have become some kind of 'master' as you didn't believe there was so much depth to the subject whilst you were an ignoramus.

during this interim period it's easy to make a complete fool of yourself when discussing the new topic with someone that has gone beyond the basics. you don't appreciate that they know more and assume yourself to posses similar acumen as them - afterall, you believe you've just learnt a hell of a lot, how could there possibly be more to know.

after this period you, hopefully, start to learn more about the subject and then realise you know practically nothing about the topic at all. you've grasped the underlying principles and can now see that the knowledge other experts poses on the subject makes you look like a buffoon.

beyond this, you gradually accept that there will always be things you don't know about the subject - if anything, as you learn more you realise that there is yet more that you don't know. but at this point the subject is part of you, you have the ability to see the shortcuts and sometimes the connections between disparate areas of the subject.
Logged
Eóin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 1,400


O'Callaghan

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2006, 08:21:11 AM »

Yeah I tend agree with want you're both saying.

I think perhaps maybe looking back at knowledge gained years earlier which can seem so trivial now that you underestimate how difficult it was getting to where you are today.

Nudone; I suppose I'd liken your idea of layers with the concept whereby you work and try to understand all the parts which make up a system, and then one day it just clicks with you how those parts go together and all of a sudden you start think about the system at a higher level not worrying about each individual piece.
Logged

Interviewer: Is there anything you don't like?
Bjarne Stroustrup: Marketing hype as a substitute for technical argument. Thoughtless adherence to dogma. Pride in ignorance.
CodeTRUCKER
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 1,024



Bush Flying... where I'd rather be.

see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2006, 09:36:04 PM »

Here is something I came up with.  It has served me well...
"A Professional is one who knows enough about what one is doing...
to know one does not know enough about what one is doing."
« Last Edit: September 26, 2010, 12:00:30 AM by CodeTRUCKER » Logged

I applaud those that refuse to commit "intellectual suicide."

Truth, unlike opinion, tradition, etc. will always be able to stand on its own.  Truth is not a static, but a living entity and will perpetually impart life; therefore, any "truth" that does not or can not impart life can not be Truth.

I am persuaded the only reason bad men have succeeded is not because good men have done nothing, but that good men did not do enough.

An Open Letter to My Friends


Notice: - Unless stated otherwise, I receive no compensation for anything I post here.
Eóin
Charter Member
***
Posts: 1,400


O'Callaghan

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2006, 10:20:43 PM »

I must say I really like that saying and think it is very relevant. For example there was a time, about six years ago when I was an avid assembly programmer and thought I knew everything there was to know about programming. It's only since then that I've come to embrace such very basic concepts such as exceptions or proper algorithm choice. At least today I have the experience to see just a glimpse of how much there is out there for me to still learn.
Logged

Interviewer: Is there anything you don't like?
Bjarne Stroustrup: Marketing hype as a substitute for technical argument. Thoughtless adherence to dogma. Pride in ignorance.
mouser
First Author
Administrator
*****
Posts: 32,700



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2006, 11:50:30 PM »

most experts seem to pass through a stage where they think they know everything, and then only as they keep learning to they realize how much they don't yet know.

another way to say it is that an expert knows what they don't know.

unfortunately i've notices that when you get to that stage it can be almost debilitating.  it's easier to write a paper on something when you think you know it all.  once you get to the stage where you can see all these gaps in what you know it's hard to write a sentence without feeling the need to add 10 footnotes qualifying it.  Sad
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
 
Jump to:  
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  

DonationCoder.com | About Us
DonationCoder.com Forum | Powered by SMF
[ Page time: 0.031s | Server load: 0.18 ]