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(IT World)   How many bad habits do you get from programming? Let's see, 0, 1, 2, 3   (itworld.com) divider line 90
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4702 clicks; posted to Geek » on 05 Dec 2013 at 9:23 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-12-05 09:00:58 AM  
The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset.

7) Who has ever thought that power-of-two birthdays were a big deal, without being stupid or ironic while doing it? I've seen people do binary on their cakes and whatnot, but seriously thinking that 32 is a big birthday is about as common as people going all-out celebrating March 14th.

6) What programmer has ever failed to distinguish the difference between people and computers? I'll grant you that programming itself doesn't require too many people skills, but that's not the same thing as failing to remember that people don't execute precise instructions like computers.

5) Once, back in the days of yore, there were people who were OCD about their code because programming was like putting together a puzzle where all the pieces were perfect squares- everything had to line up perfectly and there was nothing stopping you from making a stupid mistake. Well designed modern programming languages don't really permit this anymore, and compilers and out-of-order processors generally do a much better job of optimization than people ever could.There are still people who do things like tweak compiler output, but they are few and far between.

4) Lazy people are lazy. That guy doesn't take out the trash for a week because he's a slob, not because he's trying to optimize his time. There are some useful applications of programming skills to real life: if you ever have to sort a deck of cards, go ahead and quicksort it, it's fun and saves time. If you fail to take showers and explain to people you're using lazy evaluation... that's not optimization, that's you being a lazy skank.

3) That's funny, I work with programmers who take an extra long lunch to go run/swim at the gym, take kids to school so they get up at 5:30AM, and go to bed at 9:00 every night (because they're getting up at 5 farking 30). Sitting at desks for long hours every day is a problem, but not a problem that isn't also faced by literally every other "desk job" in existence.

2) Nope. Also, no one ever said that zero-based numbering was more efficient, it just looks nicer and has the attribute that zero is the first nonnegative number, where nonnegative numbers tend to be useful for memory addressing.

1) Really? Nope also.

0) This article makes me want to stab someone.
 
2013-12-05 09:30:09 AM  
 
2013-12-05 09:30:38 AM  

Fubini: The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset.

7) Who has ever thought that power-of-two birthdays were a big deal, without being stupid or ironic while doing it? I've seen people do binary on their cakes and whatnot, but seriously thinking that 32 is a big birthday is about as common as people going all-out celebrating March 14th.

6) What programmer has ever failed to distinguish the difference between people and computers? I'll grant you that programming itself doesn't require too many people skills, but that's not the same thing as failing to remember that people don't execute precise instructions like computers.

5) Once, back in the days of yore, there were people who were OCD about their code because programming was like putting together a puzzle where all the pieces were perfect squares- everything had to line up perfectly and there was nothing stopping you from making a stupid mistake. Well designed modern programming languages don't really permit this anymore, and compilers and out-of-order processors generally do a much better job of optimization than people ever could.There are still people who do things like tweak compiler output, but they are few and far between.

4) Lazy people are lazy. That guy doesn't take out the trash for a week because he's a slob, not because he's trying to optimize his time. There are some useful applications of programming skills to real life: if you ever have to sort a deck of cards, go ahead and quicksort it, it's fun and saves time. If you fail to take showers and explain to people you're using lazy evaluation... that's not optimization, that's you being a lazy skank.

3) That's funny, I work with programmers who take an extra long lunch to go run/swim at the gym, take kids to school so they get up at 5:30AM, and go to bed at 9:00 every night (because they're getting up at 5 farking 30). Sitting at desks for long hours every day is a problem, but not a problem that isn't also faced ...


This. I don't know any programmers that do any of this shiat (other than be obese and lazy, which isn't exclusive to programmers) and I work in IT
 
2013-12-05 09:32:25 AM  

Fubini: The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset.(snippage)



Yep.  The only thing remotely accurate on there is taking things too literally or being OCD but those are almost always traits possessed before you become a developer.  And as for being unhealthy, like you said, that's every desk worker.  Get up out of the damn desk and walk the stairs every now and then.  I do this in addition to an hour workout after work.

And article didn't say anything about taking in caffeine until your kidneys hurt.
 
2013-12-05 09:33:09 AM  
OK, the powers of 2 thing and the "start counting from 0" thing were kind of entertaining jokes, but the rest of the list seemed to be taking stereotypes that haven't even been stereotypes for a decade completely seriously.

Am I missing something or was there a lot of tonal whiplash in there?
 
2013-12-05 09:35:01 AM  
Programmers can forget that humans don't always follow instructions exactly (or at all)

Serious question:  How is it the programmer's deficiency that people don't follow instructions?
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-12-05 09:36:11 AM  
Some are well-known to non-programmers, like Ctrl-C for copying

I remember a poster in college that said "control C to Star Wars." The creators weren't fans of Reagan. Control C was the standard BSD interrupt character, used to kill an interactive process.
 
2013-12-05 09:41:10 AM  
I have to confess, there's one stereotypical programmer slipup I'll make when I'm sufficiently tired/distracted/buzzed: If someone asks me, say, "Do you want fish or chicken?", I catch myself saying "yes." After all, if I want either one, then the OR evaluates to true.
 
2013-12-05 09:41:11 AM  

Fubini: The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset.

7) Who has ever thought that power-of-two birthdays were a big deal, without being stupid or ironic while doing it? I've seen people do binary on their cakes and whatnot, but seriously thinking that 32 is a big birthday is about as common as people going all-out celebrating March 14th.

6) What programmer has ever failed to distinguish the difference between people and computers? I'll grant you that programming itself doesn't require too many people skills, but that's not the same thing as failing to remember that people don't execute precise instructions like computers.

5) Once, back in the days of yore, there were people who were OCD about their code because programming was like putting together a puzzle where all the pieces were perfect squares- everything had to line up perfectly and there was nothing stopping you from making a stupid mistake. Well designed modern programming languages don't really permit this anymore, and compilers and out-of-order processors generally do a much better job of optimization than people ever could.There are still people who do things like tweak compiler output, but they are few and far between.

4) Lazy people are lazy. That guy doesn't take out the trash for a week because he's a slob, not because he's trying to optimize his time. There are some useful applications of programming skills to real life: if you ever have to sort a deck of cards, go ahead and quicksort it, it's fun and saves time. If you fail to take showers and explain to people you're using lazy evaluation... that's not optimization, that's you being a lazy skank.

3) That's funny, I work with programmers who take an extra long lunch to go run/swim at the gym, take kids to school so they get up at 5:30AM, and go to bed at 9:00 every night (because they're getting up at 5 farking 30). Sitting at desks for long hours every day is a problem, but not a problem that isn't also faced ...


No, it is written by a lazy journalist who has no idea what professional programmers actually do and probably just asked a bunch of script kiddie "elite hackers" some really stupid questions.
 
2013-12-05 09:43:13 AM  
I've been guilty of OCD and literalism long before I became a programmer. It's helped me become a better programmer, as I see it, but that's about it. I learned to live with it long ago.

Everything else seems like a caricature of a programmer, something that someone who only peripherally interacts with programmers would think or whom also takes programming jokes way, way too literally.
 
2013-12-05 09:43:23 AM  

midigod: Programmers can forget that humans don't always follow instructions exactly (or at all)

Serious question:  How is it the programmer's deficiency that people don't follow instructions?


What don't you understand feelings are facts, intuition is better than instruction, vaccines cause autism, evolution is a lie, atheism is a religion etc..., etc..., etc...

Every day people confront their own inadequacies by pretending the world is wrong and they are right.
 
2013-12-05 09:45:40 AM  
This is f*cking retarded.
 
2013-12-05 09:46:51 AM  

Fubini: The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset....


You said everything I was going to say, and probably better than I would have said it.
 
2013-12-05 09:47:39 AM  
If you make every choice by saying "not that one", you might be a programmer.
 
2013-12-05 09:57:27 AM  
// I'm not saying this is a comment in this thread, && it might be.
 
2013-12-05 10:01:07 AM  
This one time I was asked to pick up a carton of milk at the store, and if they had fresh eggs I had to bring 6. So I went to the store, checked the eggs and got the 6 cartons of milk.
 
2013-12-05 10:04:07 AM  

farker99: // I'm not saying this is a comment in this thread, && it might be.


I C++ what you did there.
 
2013-12-05 10:12:32 AM  

machoprogrammer: Fubini: The hell is this? TFA sounds like it was written with babby's first journalism playset.

7) Who has ever thought that power-of-two birthdays were a big deal, without being stupid or ironic while doing it? I've seen people do binary on their cakes and whatnot, but seriously thinking that 32 is a big birthday is about as common as people going all-out celebrating March 14th.

6) What programmer has ever failed to distinguish the difference between people and computers? I'll grant you that programming itself doesn't require too many people skills, but that's not the same thing as failing to remember that people don't execute precise instructions like computers.

5) Once, back in the days of yore, there were people who were OCD about their code because programming was like putting together a puzzle where all the pieces were perfect squares- everything had to line up perfectly and there was nothing stopping you from making a stupid mistake. Well designed modern programming languages don't really permit this anymore, and compilers and out-of-order processors generally do a much better job of optimization than people ever could.There are still people who do things like tweak compiler output, but they are few and far between.

4) Lazy people are lazy. That guy doesn't take out the trash for a week because he's a slob, not because he's trying to optimize his time. There are some useful applications of programming skills to real life: if you ever have to sort a deck of cards, go ahead and quicksort it, it's fun and saves time. If you fail to take showers and explain to people you're using lazy evaluation... that's not optimization, that's you being a lazy skank.

3) That's funny, I work with programmers who take an extra long lunch to go run/swim at the gym, take kids to school so they get up at 5:30AM, and go to bed at 9:00 every night (because they're getting up at 5 farking 30). Sitting at desks for long hours every day is a problem, but not a problem that isn't al ...


I can say with certainty that the technical writing/editing field is also rife with lazy slobs. That is DEFINITELY not restricted to programmers.
 
2013-12-05 10:14:15 AM  
Everyone complaining about the rounding of power of 2 thing, I have a real life friend who always does that. He will easily pick 64 pieces of something over 50 pieces, on any given day.

And for myself, #4 there applies to me (trying to automate everything).

The point being, all of them may not apply to everyone, but there are people who will do things like that.
 
2013-12-05 10:19:49 AM  

mayIFark: Everyone complaining about the rounding of power of 2 thing, I have a real life friend who always does that. He will easily pick 64 pieces of something over 50 pieces, on any given day.

And for myself, #4 there applies to me (trying to automate everything).

The point being, all of them may not apply to everyone, but there are people who will do things like that.


The real point being, none of these you get from being a programmer.
 
2013-12-05 10:21:57 AM  
How many bad habits do you get from journalism?  Here are ten of them...
1. Oh my God, we are all going to die!  Exaggeration is one of the worst, NO, THE WORST habit you can get from journalism.  After all, millions, no billions of readers will want to read what I write, so I have to make sure that my Pulitzer worthy story is seen by all of them.
2. I don't know what the fark I am saying, but I will write meaningless word fish Bigfoot salad and make myself look like an expert, which is the same thing.  Or I will find some nutjob to explain it and make it sound like it's the end of the world.
3. What I say I'm going to say and what I say will be complete opposites.  Sure, I might say that American cars are crap, but will extol the virtues of American cars and their fine engineering and style.  If I can exaggerate about it, so much the better, because I am worthy of a Pulitzer, but everyone else is jealous of my talents, including George Stephanopoulos and Bob Woodward.
4. My only interests include missing white women, the weather and how bad it is, murders, and celebrity stories involving drugs and vagina exposure.  If it bleeds, it leads.  Have I said that I exaggerate a WHOLE LOT and that it is good?  Seriously, I need a Pulitzer.
5. Copy and paste is a good thing.  I am too lazy to do research, so I will make it up.  Or copy it from a different news source or Wikipedia.  I'm a hard-working journalist who is Pulitzer worthy.
10. I can't count.  I am too busy to write 10 of them.  After all, I am a journalist worthy of a Pulitzer and everything I say is a complete opposite.  And this is not about missing white women.  And they didn't have anything on Wikipedia.
 
2013-12-05 10:27:13 AM  
7. No
6. No. It's more like... people do programming because they expect people to behave like machines
5. Again, people with OCD/perfectionism suit the job.
4. A bit
3. Yeah
2. No
1. No
0. No
 
2013-12-05 10:27:35 AM  
Knock Knock.  Race Condition.  Who's there?

The good thing about UDP jokes?  I don't care if you don't get them.
 
2013-12-05 10:31:13 AM  

ZAZ: Control C was the standard BSD interrupt character, used to kill an interactive process.


Was?
 
2013-12-05 10:33:59 AM  

meanmutton: mayIFark: Everyone complaining about the rounding of power of 2 thing, I have a real life friend who always does that. He will easily pick 64 pieces of something over 50 pieces, on any given day.

And for myself, #4 there applies to me (trying to automate everything).

The point being, all of them may not apply to everyone, but there are people who will do things like that.

The real point being, none of these you get from being a programmer.


You make it sound like you think the author thinks that being a programmer is a condition that has symptoms, just like a disease. I kind of got that feeling from reading it too. Its like the author never actually talked to an actual programmer who didn't answer with snark and sarcasm.
 
2013-12-05 10:44:06 AM  
I can't believe this article was actually published. I which I could CTRL-X it from my head! 

/har har
 
2013-12-05 10:50:27 AM  
Programmers are insufferable pedantic assholes with some of the most astonishing inflated egos you'll ever see from a low wage worker.  They don't document their work, and how dare you have a question about their code, or a suggestion on how to improve the program for the end user. They'll just blow you off.

/If you don't know how to write assembly maybe you should go use a mac, loser.
 
2013-12-05 10:50:56 AM  
FTA: 5. Being too literal, a perfectionist or obsessive/compulsive

That's me. When someone asks me the time, I give them the exact minute and hour. I can't stand to round time up or down(if it's 11:43, that's what I tell them, not 11:45, for example).
 
2013-12-05 10:53:28 AM  

fluffy2097: Programmers are insufferable pedantic assholes with some of the most astonishing inflated egos you'll ever see from a low wage worker.  They don't document their work, and how dare you have a question about their code, or a suggestion on how to improve the program for the end user. They'll just blow you off.

/If you don't know how to write assembly maybe you should go use a mac, loser.


Nothing you said makes sense. Programming was an unusual skill 10 years ago, and 20 years ago it was rare enough to be special. It's pretty commodity these days. If you have a programmer like that on your team, just fire them and hire a new one.

The real problem is that someone hired an asshole and no body wants to make the effort to get rid of him.
 
2013-12-05 10:58:11 AM  

phimuskapsi: I can't believe this article was actually published. I which I could CTRL-X it from my head! 

/har har


But even if you CTRL-X its still in your clipboard cache, for most brains. You, my friend, need a reboot. Let me introduce you to the Capn'.
 
2013-12-05 10:58:26 AM  

Fubini: fluffy2097: Programmers are insufferable pedantic assholes with some of the most astonishing inflated egos you'll ever see from a low wage worker.  They don't document their work, and how dare you have a question about their code, or a suggestion on how to improve the program for the end user. They'll just blow you off.

/If you don't know how to write assembly maybe you should go use a mac, loser.

Nothing you said makes sense. Programming was an unusual skill 10 years ago, and 20 years ago it was rare enough to be special. It's pretty commodity these days. If you have a programmer like that on your team, just fire them and hire a new one.

The real problem is that someone hired an asshole and no body wants to make the effort to get rid of him.


Well, here's your problem.  If you're paying $30k a year for a developer, you get what you get.  If you want someone with actual business skills you're going to have to pay them a bit more.
 
2013-12-05 11:11:12 AM  
Real Programmers don't eat quiche.  They eat Twinkies.  And Szechwan food.  Do not go to eat Szechwan food with a group of Real Programmers unless you are prepared to argue bitterly over the last spring roll.

/mem-o-ries.....
 
2013-12-05 11:11:13 AM  

meanmutton: Well, here's your problem.  If you're paying $30k a year for a developer, you get what you get.  If you want someone with actual business skills you're going to have to pay them a bit more.


Linux doesn't pay their programmers everything.

That's why it's gone pretty much nowhere in the past decade.
 
2013-12-05 11:38:22 AM  

Arkanaut: Deslidified



much better. thank you.  frickin programmers.  (:
 
2013-12-05 11:48:54 AM  

Slaves2Darkness: midigod: Programmers can forget that humans don't always follow instructions exactly (or at all)

Serious question:  How is it the programmer's deficiency that people don't follow instructions?

What don't you understand feelings are facts, intuition is better than instruction, vaccines cause autism, evolution is a lie, atheism is a religion etc..., etc..., etc...

Every day people confront their own inadequacies by pretending the world is wrong and they are right.



that's why i've always followed the truism: eat shiat, 50 trillion flies can't be wrong.
 
2013-12-05 11:49:15 AM  

fluffy2097: meanmutton: Well, here's your problem.  If you're paying $30k a year for a developer, you get what you get.  If you want someone with actual business skills you're going to have to pay them a bit more.

Linux doesn't pay their programmers everything.

That's why it's gone pretty much nowhere in the past decade.


I don't know whether you're being sarcastic, lying, or not knowledgeable about the current Linux landscape.

/ Note:  For my needs, I can essentially use any OS.
 
2013-12-05 11:56:18 AM  

midigod: Programmers can forget that humans don't always follow instructions exactly (or at all)

Serious question:  How is it the programmer's deficiency that people don't follow instructions?


Failing to design for the environment.

The environment is that people are imperfect. Deal with it appropriately.
 
2013-12-05 11:56:32 AM  

fluffy2097: Programmers are insufferable pedantic assholes with some of the most astonishing inflated egos you'll ever see from a low wage worker.  They don't document their work, and how dare you have a question about their code, or a suggestion on how to improve the program for the end user. They'll just blow you off.

/If you don't know how to write assembly microcode maybe you should go use a mac, loser.

 
2013-12-05 11:59:50 AM  
I'll compile this when I have the time.
 
2013-12-05 12:05:36 PM  
Starting from 0 vs. 1 is not a matter of efficiency but reflects the conceptual difference between indexing vs counting, something that usually makes little difference in real life. This difference existed in set theory before programming existed and was brought in as a conceptual means to avoid fence post errors.

A few places this shows up in real life
0. In the UK, the ground floor in a building is conceptually 0 while the 1st floor = US 2nd.
1. The age of things starts at 0. A baby less than 12 months old is 0 years old.
2. The 19th century ends before 1900.
 
2013-12-05 12:15:05 PM  
Where does the bad habit of summing up shiat you read on Quora and Stack Exchange come from?
 
2013-12-05 12:16:17 PM  

HairBolus: Starting from 0 vs. 1 is not a matter of efficiency but reflects the conceptual difference between indexing vs counting, something that usually makes little difference in real life. This difference existed in set theory before programming existed and was brought in as a conceptual means to avoid fence post errors.


There is a technological aspect, however. In C, arrays were implemented as a block of sequential memory addresses, and array indexes were literal memory offsets. So array[0] is the data that's in the memory address of array+0, array[1] is the data that's in the memory address of array+1, etc. Also, one operation (array+index) is slightly more efficient than doing two operations (array+index-1).

It's a bit more involved, but that's the general idea.
 
2013-12-05 12:19:33 PM  
I'm a programmer but I would cock-punch anyone who actually started counting from zero without meaning it as a joke.

/ok, not really, but I would give them an incredulous face
 
2013-12-05 12:21:58 PM  
If you suffer from any of these problems, be sure to bring it up during an interview. I really don't want to hire anyone who has such a problem with context.
 
2013-12-05 12:24:48 PM  
HairBolus:

A baby less than 12 months old is 0 years old.

Chinese culture traditionally has called a newborn 1 year old in a sort of nod to the gestation period.
 
2013-12-05 12:42:05 PM  
fluffy2097:

www.monkeyinthecage.com
programming
 
2013-12-05 12:46:19 PM  

qorkfiend: There is a technological aspect, however. In C, arrays were implemented as a block of sequential memory addresses, and array indexes were literal memory offsets. So array[0] is the data that's in the memory address of array+0, array[1] is the data that's in the memory address of array+1, etc. Also, one operation (array+index) is slightly more efficient than doing two operations (array+index-1).


And before C it was done that way in assembly, because back in ye olde days everything was done in real mode, and in real mode you have one flat address space that starts at zero and goes as far as the total physical memory in the system (modulo segmentation, interrupt tables, and other special addressing funniness). That in turn is due to the physical configuration of computing hardware and how memory is actually fetched to the processor.

Also, the bolded part is slightly misleading. One based indexing can be just as efficient as zero based indexing by modifying the array pointer itself. Instead of operating on  array, when you take the pointer the compiler secretly gives you  array-1, so when you index 5, for example, you get array - 1 + 5 = array + 4, which is what you want.
 
2013-12-05 12:51:38 PM  
I have to agree with a lot of the sentiment here. As a programmer myself:

7. I find round number math to be 10, 100, etc. The most interesting numbers to me are still primes and squares. Never has anyone I know commented on the significance of a 32nd birthday.
6. I do not expect people to behave like computers. But I DO work with computers because they do not behave like people.
5. Again, I work with computers because I am very literal and I like a "coworker" that agrees with me. My directions are very precise because I don't want people to misunderstand. That's not a bad habit. That's a personality trait that goes well with computing.
4. If you see something that needs improving and you don't try to improve it because it's "good enough" then you're the problem. I like things to run smoothly, so I do optimize a lot of my tasks. Do you go to the kitchen and get a beer, then go to the kitchen and get some chips? No, you get them at the same time because it's more optimal.
3. Leading an unhealthy lifestyle is something that people who do not prioritize health do. These exist in every industry.
2. Seriously, no programmer counts with 0 first this without it being a joke.
1. I doubt anyone actually tries CTRL+C without a keyboard either.
0. If I've worked long hours, I have typed camel case IMs, but not entire emails. This is not a bad habit, it's a consequence of moving in and out of work/life mindset. No one writes emails with function calls without being a douchebag ironic.

Overall, this reads like it was written by the parents of a programmer as a joke.
 
2013-12-05 12:53:29 PM  

SansNeural: HairBolus:

A baby less than 12 months old is 0 years old.

Chinese culture traditionally has called a newborn 1 year old in a sort of nod to the gestation period.


Koreans do that as well.  And on January 1, everyone is one year older.  So you could be born on December 31, at 11:59:59 PM and at the stroke of midnight, you're now two.
 
2013-12-05 01:03:26 PM  

Fubini: 6) What programmer has ever failed to distinguish the difference between people and computers? I'll grant you that programming itself doesn't require too many people skills, but that's not the same thing as failing to remember that people don't execute precise instructions like computers.


Working for a leading medical software company I can say that while programmers can distinguish the difference between people and computers, in real life, its often not considered in terms of how people will actually use the software. Inevitably, some of your customers or users will configure settings in a way that was never intended or considered in combination (because they seemed non-sensical to the programmers), or will try to shoehorn part of the software into being used for something it wasn't really intended for, but the end users still expect it to work correctly for their desired purpose.
   Even if a setting is only available to a system administrator you have to put guardrails around it if they could potentially do something very bad with it.
 
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