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  • KevinWorkman

    by Published on December 22nd, 2011 02:35 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Java Tutorials

    I’ve been asked to make a post on the dangers of relying on an IDE, so here goes…

    Tl;dr version: Relying too heavily on an IDE makes you a bad programmer. To demonstrate my point, think about trying to get your girlfriend to write hello world in notepad and compile and run from the command prompt, explaining to her what’s going on in each step. Chances are, she’d have a pretty good (if not vague) notion of what’s going on, and she’d be able to explain the gist of the process back to you. Now think about having her install eclipse, run it, set up a new project, generate a new main class template, write hello world using autocomplete, and press play. Even if you tried to explain each step to her, she’d have nowhere near the same understanding she gained from the simpler approach.

    Anyway… ...
    by Published on September 8th, 2011 04:55 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Official Forum Rules

    So, you’re stuck on a Java programming homework assignment? You’ve come to the right place to get help, but we aren’t here to do your homework for you. If you follow these guidelines, you’ll probably be able to at least get started by yourself, and when you get stuck, you’ll know the best way to ask a question about it.

    Step 0- Calm down.

    Do: Get up, go on a walk. If you’ve been staring at the same screen for 12 hours, your brain has turned to mush and you might as well be looking at Klingon. You won’t get anything done.
    Don’t: Become frustrated and copy and paste random code you find on the internet, or try adding or removing lines at random just to see what happens without understanding any of it. That’s only going to make things much worse.
    Do: Take breaks. I’m not saying check facebook every 5 minutes or play a round of solitaire every time you save. Work, but get away from the computer every once in a while! Work for 45 minutes, then take a 5 minute stroll around the house.

    Example: I’ve been hacking away at this code for a few hours, and nothing seems to be sticking. So, I take a walk around the block, maybe eat something other than coffee and diet soda, and come back in an hour or two with fresh eyes. I might have even come up with a solution while I was gone (most of my best ideas happen in the shower).
    ...
    by Published on August 24th, 2011 06:17 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Java Tutorials

    Processing Homepage: Processing.org
    Processing API: Extended Language (API) \ Processing.org
    Processing on Wikipedia: Processing (programming language) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Processing Monsters: Processing monsters (a collection of open source Processing sketches that display monsters)
    Open Processing: OpenProcessing - Share Your Sketches! (a collection of open source Processing sketches that do other cool stuff)
    The game I made in Processing: Escape from Monster City

    Full disclosure- this started to feel like an advertisement, so I just want to say that I’m not affiliated with Processing at all. I just started playing with it, and I’m really excited about how it can be used to not only introduce new programmers to Java, but for experienced users to take Java to the next level.

    I participated in Ludum Dare last weekend, and I took that as an opportunity to learn Processing, which is “an open source programming language and environment for people who want to create images, animations, and interactions” built on top of Java.

    I’m extremely impressed by what Processing allows you to do in such a short amount of time. Out of the box, you have a 60 fps rendering loop, easy access to 3D primitives, and cool lighting effects, as well as image handling, camera manipulation, input processing, and a ton of other stuff I haven’t gotten into yet- all done in the object oriented style of Java. ...
    by Published on June 28th, 2011 05:32 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Official Forum Rules

    The gist:
    Spoon-feeding is NOT helping. It robs a person of the process of solving a problem by working through it, which is not only fun but is also a crucial skill to learn. Problem solving is much harder to learn than memorizing syntax. Even if a person looks through the syntax you provide, you’ve taken away the chance to practice problem solving, which will only make it harder for the person to solve the next problem. Spoon-feeding only makes you look like a newbie. If you actually want to help, a better way to do so is by helping people work through the problems (instead of simply posting the solution)- suggest breaking the problem up into smaller steps, or ask where they’re stuck. Spoon-feeding can lead to moderator action.
    ...