[Newbies] Re: I've never written a line of code, but want to be a programmer!

Tim Retz human.shield.117 at gmail.com
Mon Apr 4 22:49:00 UTC 2011

I now realize I need to have some sort of example for anyone to work with, so
here's my current plan:
I know that "Diving in" would be the best way to learn, so (With the help of
boredom) one day when playing minesweeper I thought to myself: "I wish I had
an empty playing-field, where I could click to place mines, and the
surrounding cells would number themselves off. That would totally help my
strategy, and I could expand it into a working minesweeper game really
easily. I bet that'd be a great 'my first smalltalk app'!" Now, I know I
would have to make some sort of grid with cells, and make the cells aware of
their surroundings. My biggest issue is that I don't have the experience to
know where to start.

Every guide I've found (with one exception) has more or less just given code
to make something work, without much insight as to how they got the idea to
do what they did. I can copy and paste methods all day long, but I won't
learn anything. 

The exception I mentioned above was the "Bots Inc." tutorial. It was
fantastic, made me think, and I really felt like I was learning. My only
problem is that is ended too soon. I wish it would go on to show you how to
build your own systems and, well, just keep going.

On a side note, I'd like to mention that I've been at this off and on for
some time now, and I was hesitant to write a question for someone to respond
to directly. Before now a Google search to find if anyone is having similar
trouble is all I've had the confidence for, making this a very pleasant
experience. (I'm 21, old enough to know I'm still a kid, and be nervous
about wasting people's time.)

I feel I should also mention my long term goals. I know it'll be a LONG
while before I'm successful, but I hope to eventually (I'm thinking in terms
of years from now) write my own OS, and everything that runs in it. I sort
of hate windows, and want to be able to change anything I want at any given
time (I know I'll need to learn more than smalltalk, but I have to start
somewhere!), but I don't want to have to deal with how someone else thought
things would work best.

However, I'm starting to see that this idea is likely hindering my learning
experience. (I want to do it all myself, which pushes me away from other
peoples (working) code in favor of struggling to solve the problem myself.)
I have also, once, managed to run a program I was working on in my head to
see what things where doing (And it was quite a trip!), if it's worthy of

Wow, This message ended up being a lot longer than I thought it would, I
hope I didn't leave anything out!
...And for whatever reason, I was unable to post a reply for a few weeks.
It's working now though.

View this message in context: http://forum.world.st/I-ve-never-written-a-line-of-code-but-want-to-be-a-programmer-tp3417210p3426772.html
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