[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
RE: Parens Shock
On Friday, August 22, 2003 10:31 AM, Peter J. Wasilko, Esq.
> > It isn't superficial. When you're 15 or 16, you can learn any new
> > programming language in hours. When you're, say, 25 or 35 or 45,
> > the
> > brain starts to slow down, habits become entrenched, and things are
> > not remembered with the sponge-like rapidity that you used to
> > have.
> What an excellent analysis!
But I'm not sure if it's really true. Obviously, it's pretty
subjective, but I don't think that the analogy to natural languages
That is, I am much more able to learn new programming languages *now*
that I have more programming "maturity", than I would have been at 15,
before I really understood the lambda nature. I don't think that I
could have really learned Icon or Haskell or Forth or Prolog in a few
hours when I was still in high school, though I did learn several of
those languages in nearly a few hours in my late twenties.
I was exposed to Scheme and Lisp a couple of times before I was twenty,
and it just didn't take. Then, I got to grad school a dyed in the wool
C++ programmer, and finally figured out how things really work. It
helped that I had instructors named Friedman and Dybvig, and that I was
surrounded by colleagues doing cool things with Scheme. The real
difference, though, was that I was more mature---more prepared to
understand radical ideas than I would have been when I was younger and
more able to see a good thing because of so much prolonged exposure to
all those bad things.
(Also, though the thirty-something has the wife, friends, and kids; the
teen has his or her own distractions.)
Kevin S. Millikin Architecture Technology Corporation
Research Scientist Specialists in Computer Architecture
(952)829-5864 x162 http://www.atcorp.com