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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Know Your Fundamentals

I'm still not able to make any real posts or other contributions to the outside world at large because of ongoing family medical issues. However, today I did see a great quote from everybody's favorite Bjarne Stroustrup that I think is extremely accurate:

Know your fundamentals (algorithms, data structures, machine architecture, systems) and know several programming languages to the point where you can use them idiomatically.

Know some non-computer field of study well — math, biology, history, optics, whatever. Learn to communicate effectively in speech and in writing. Spend an unreasonable amount of time on some difficult topic to really master it. Try to do something that might make a difference in the world.

How many people do I know that don't know their fundamentals, who barely know one programming language and certainly don't know it idiomatically? The answer, unfortunately, is many.

Here's one more gem from the same article:
I’ll just note that I consider the idea of one language, one programming tool, as the one and only best tool for everyone and for every problem infantile. If someone claims to have the perfect language he is either a fool or a salesman or both.
And on that note, I'm crawling back into my hole for a few days.

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