I am teaching myself how to program. But there seems to be a big gap between intro courses/resources (CodeCademy, O'Reilly books, Learn X the Hard Way) and Actually Doing Things. Help me figure out a road plan? [more inside]
I'd like to travel the world for a few years and work on some iOS app ideas at the same time, with the hope that if one of 'em makes enough money I can keep doing it forever! However, I reckon hostels probably aren't the most productive places in the world. Have any of you ever done something like this? What's the best approach for getting in the zone and being productive when you're on the go and surrounded by people? Are coffeehouse programmers as common in Europe as they are in the Silicon Valley? What about work-life balance -- is it possible to maintain a healthy hostel social life while also getting stuff done? Any advice would be much appreciated. Thank you!
Programming question: I'm looking for recommendations for some kind of visualization tool to help me stay organized within complex nested loops and if statements. [more inside]
I am a beginner in information technology, and I need to learn HTML5. For me to start learning HTML5, I need to know what languages/codes that I should know to start working in HTML5. I know HTML5 are used for webpages, mobile, games, and others. For example, I knew that I should be familiar with CSS3 So what are other basic information and skills needed to learn before starting with HTML5? Thanks
I'm applying for jobs as a programmer and I'm wondering whether to list the freelance programming work I've done. [more inside]
I'm looking for best-practices for managing multiple versions of the same C# code which are *almost* the same, but not quite. [more inside]
Is it worth changing careers, getting a masters in CS? [more inside]
Are there any published studies / figures about what percentage of smartphone users know what GPS is (i.e., do smartphone users know GPS determines your precise location)? Bonus question: do they know it's a battery drainer? [more inside]
For a personal project I'm working on, what would be the best programming language if I wanted the user to be able to input some text and image choices and have them receive the information back in an eBook? I've used PHP before to store and retrieve that information, but I'm not sure it could handle the conversion to an ebook. [more inside]
Should I attend App Academy? [more inside]
For basically my whole teen-to-adult life I have wanted to write AI for video games as a hobby. Mostly games of the overhead strategy type, think Red Alert, Warcraft (not World Of), Starcraft and so forth. [more inside]
I'd like to help my friend look into a career in programming. Best way to do it? [more inside]
I'm trying to hire a full time coder for my business. I build, maintain, and remodel my own portfolio of websites (PHP, JS, WP, HTML, CSS, MySQL, etc). Once I have a few candidates I would like to assign them all the same small (paid) project so that I may assess their abilities. What should the test include? All candidates will be US-Based. $6000/mo budget cap. [more inside]
This Fall I will be starting a PhD in the social sciences. Because of my research interests/subfield, I will have to know the ins and outs of statistical software like R, Stata, and SAS. Can this knowledge enable me to freelance for some supplemental income or should I being learning another programming language? [more inside]
I'm trying to work out how to use something like grep or sed or awk (or maybe even some Perl) to extract a string of characters which appears in a predictable place in a series of text files. Help/advice/tutorials very welcome! [more inside]
I'm having maddening problems creating objects in Python. Details inside [more inside]
Where and how can I hire someone in the U.S. (or India or any other country with these skills) to write a mobile app for me? I'm aware of websites like elance and odesk where programmers bid for work. What's the cost range for this type of quality work? [more inside]
Is Django still widely used by software developers? [more inside]
I just started my first developer job. I squint at the computer screen all day. By the end of the day, my eyes are red and bloodshot. I can't deal with small text, but I can't make it all bigger - for instance, I can change the size of the code in my IDE, but not the debugger. I've reduced the brightness of my monitors dramatically. The only time my eyes don't hurt is when I'm so absorbed in my work that I don't notice. By the end of the day, I don't want to focus my eyesight on anything; it's even killing me to type this. Even watching tv bothers me. I seriously don't know how to take care of my eyes. Can you please offer some advice, and even give me a few horror stories about what happens to people who don't learn to take care of their eyes? [more inside]
i have a need for a new document format. This document format would be novel, bringing together various kinds of media (text, code, vector and raster image formats, and maybe others) together in one container. These pieces would all have specific relation to one another, as defined by the creator of the document. I know that no document format exists to do what I want to do, and I'd like to develop it - by myself, at first, until I get a handle on the basics of the problem. [more inside]
I'm hoping to find short (2 month-ish to 6 month-ish) full-time, in-person programs that teach practical computer programming skills (Ruby, Python, iOS, PHP, R, Matlab, etc.) [more inside]
I'm trying to build a form in Drupal 7 using examples like this but all I've been able to figure out is that I make my own module and... then what? How does the module actually become a form? I feel like I'm missing some huge part of the concept here and Drupal's documentation is either too simple or too advanced. What am I not getting? Thanks MeFi! [more inside]
This comment in a Hacker News thread introduced me to Yashavant Kanetkar. Apparently his C programming books are the worst of the worst. Yet somehow, the Indian education system uses his books pervasively. I tried to find out more about this guy and the controversy around him, but web searches turned up a flat nothing. Anyone read his books or know about the story?
For a project, I need to store mathematical expressions as binary tree objects in Python, with each operator or operand being stored as a node. But I'm having trouble wrapping my brain around it; partly because this is my first real dive into the object-oriented pool and the specific nuts and bolts seem a little bit out of my reach. [more inside]
I've found this (see more here), which seems to be defunct (links to the "generator" are 404), and this, which is less than satisfying. Here in the age of alleged "robot authors" I'm hoping to do better. Any leads, anyone? [more inside]
"Some people, when confronted with a problem, think 'I know, I'll use %s' Now they have %d problems." How many variations on this joke do you know?
I'm pretty much a Kindergarten level Python learner. Basically, I'm on Exercise 41 in Learn Python the Hard Way (and confused), and I'm in a 100-level class learning Python. I am not a math person, although I do like formal logic (if that means anything). My biggest problem is that I think I try to solve problems too creatively, i.e. I always try the most complicated/convoluted solution possible, which is usually wrong. [more inside]
What are the best online resources to guide me in developing a website using WordPress? [more inside]
I was a comp sci major in college. That was 12 years ago. I graduated and as careers often do, I never programmed seriously again since... until now. I've spent the last 2 years teaching myself LAMP and jquery. It was like riding a bicycle. The data structures theory and other small things I managed to retain from my comp sci courses proved useful and in a very short amount of time I was able to rebrand myself a programmer. It's much easier and faster to create powerful, useful software these days than it was 12 years ago. Thing is though, and I imagine a lot of developers do this, the internet has made me more of a code aggregator than a programmer. I have 4 windows open at all times: coding window, app window, the jquery API and stackoverflow.com. Whatever I don't know how to do, I find very quickly on stackoverflow. I copy and paste the code directly and modify it as needed. Done. But I want to be better than that. I follow the general rules of good programming practice as much as I can... don't repeat yourself, be efficient, make your code neat, clean and easy to read. Without having a mentor or a guru around you, how would you know whether or not you are a good programmer or if you are a total hack???
(Java-flavored question) I have work colleagues who can explain how and when the JVM inlines code, or when implicit constructors are made / called based on the access level of global variables. They can think through code like the compiler thinks. How do I get to that level? [more inside]
I want to program my Arduino to go to sleep at 6 pm and wake back up at 5 am, and then execute a few simple functions once every hour while it's awake. I have a DS1307 real-time clock, but it doesn't have an alarm interrupt pin, so I can't just set up an external interrupt to tell the Arduino to wake when the alarm pin is set to high. What's the best way to do this without an alarm pin? [more inside]
I interviewed for a remote programming gig recently, and they requested a trial contract before making a final offer. I'd be hired as a long-term remote contractor (year+, 100% telecommuting), not an employee. I have some questions: [more inside]
I'm a web developer who is very capable with HTML and CSS, but that's about it. I am fairly comfortable with SQL, but now I need to learn to develop an API. I'd like to read a good book on the subject. Is there such a book? All I can find are things that explain why an API is useful, or things that assume you already know what you're doing in order to build/use an API.
Any suggestions for good Dot Net development tools? I'm interested in suggestions for a wide range of tool types, for example (but not limited to) unit testing, code coverage, style enforcement, bug finders, profiling, code/API documentation generation, installer/distributable packagers, continuous integration, build systems, report generators, static code analysis, decompilers, IDE enhancements, etc., etc. [more inside]
When programmers say that good software is "lazy," what exactly do they mean?
Can you help me get an idea of what this personal programming project of designing a "data-getting" program (details inside) would involve, given I would be starting from noob level? Alternatives? [more inside]
I have an opportunity to develop a CMS-type web service for a franchise where I will charge ongoing monthly subscriptions instead of an upfront development fee. They have been burned by two failed projects already; I have no interest in selling my hourly labor beyond my day job; hence the subscription idea. I am excited about this opportunity (yay residuals!) but I want to be really careful not to bite off more than I can chew. [more inside]
When an interviewer asks an interviewee for a programming job to design an object-orientated elevator control system, what are they looking for in a good answer?
I have an array which has listing information for products on a website. The products fit into two categories (call them 'bits' and 'bobs') I need to sort the array so that it goes from a completely mixed up and randomized list to: bit, bit, bit, bit, bit, bit, bob, bob, bob, bob, bob, bob, bit, bit, bit, bit, bit, bit And so on, basically reorganize the array so that the list is in alternating groups of six Array structure is basically a numbered array of keyed arrays, like so: Array (  => Array ( [id] => 39549 [title] => Product Name [author] => Author Name [price] => 7.66 [type] => bit )  => Array ( [id] => 39549 [title] => Product Name [author] => Author Name [price] => 9.66 [type] => bob ) )
I was told I can't code anymore, but I love to code. I want to keep up with cutting edge technologies, and while I'm learning -- why not develop projects that people need while getting a part-time income. One problem: Where can I find projects? [more inside]
After a torturously long stint in grad school, I’m trying to figure out what to do next. The only things on my resume are my education, a couple of summer jobs from the early 00’s, grad-student stuff (TAing, running a colloquium for a few years), and some part-time adjuncting. Should I 1) try to get a job in publishing or some other word-related field, or 2) pursue my burgeoning interest in computer programming? (If you’ve got a plausible 3, I’d love to hear it.) [more inside]
I'm 23, and I've had an objectively great programming job for six months. Part of me wants to quit and become a barista or something. Am I crazy? [more inside]
I'm slowly working through the problems on Project Rosalind, a bioinformatics primer. Would you suggest working out each solution from first principles, or do you think it makes more sense to look up existing algorithms and implement those? WWaBSD? [more inside]
Sometimes, I am a front-end web developer. Frequently, I meet new people at work who want to turn really complicated Excel documents into dazzlingly interactive web applications. Besides Excel's "Save to Web App" or "Save to SharePoint" features, such people ask if I can tap into an industry to support this -- perhaps scads of agencies and web-based or downloadable tools that make "websites" or at least customizable, interactive reports from Excel spreadsheets, data, and calculations. I'm yet to find this an abundance of examples of this. Are there? If so, what do you call them? [more inside]
What are some really good questions to pose to the interviewers at the end of a programming interview? I'm looking for ones that make the interviewers feel good about you (great question!) but ALSO make them feel good about their organization - so that everything ends on a happy note. [more inside]
I am interested in going back to school for a masters in something, but probably comp sci. I would like some advice on how to approach this. [more inside]
What courses should I take if I want to be a software developer? Is knowing data structures and algorithms enough? Or should I learn computer architecture, networks, and operating systems as well? [more inside]