Re: Helping newbie coders, how much effort to put?

From: Walter Goodwin (
Date: 02/18/97

> My advice to newbies is to leave the snippets and contributed code alone
> if they want to learn coding.  You may learn a little installing someone
> else's code, but I think the best way to learn is to start simple and work
> your way up, with your own code.

Exactly, the only way I learned was to start hacking at the code :)
my first succesful change was imping a "slay" command.  I learned quite
a bit about how to retrieve pointers, about one_argument, and security
checks just to polish it :)

My first real project is sitting on the FTP site practically unaltered
from when I first made it (gmaster.*)   It was quite an accomplishment
for someone who had no really practical C experience to code something
like that.

> In my nearly 2 years of playing with circle, I've installed two snippets.
> They were both things that I had spent a good bit of time trying to do on
> my own first, but I couldn't get right.  Since then I've worked on them a
> lot more and can write them on my own without looking at the snippets.

Out of curiousity, what were they?

> After all this time, I'm still not a very good coder, but with time and
> patience I can code just about anything.

Thats exactly how I see myself :)

Ack, which thread is this?   Anyways, going under the assumption this
is the "helping newbies" thread,  I see the biggest problem is helping
too much.  For instance, going into their code and debugging it for them.
They won't _learn_ anything from that.  Instead, give them hints, suggestions,
and methods which they can then use to debug their own code.  Once they
learn how to do something, they won't have to ask for help on that subject
again.   But if you do it for them with the pretense of showing them how,
then they are going to have to ask again, and again, until they finally
pick up on how to do it.   Personally I'd like to see a massive "Adopt
an Apprentice" program be put into place :)  Where a "veteran" coder would
adopt a newbie, and give them pointers to help em out, etc.
| Ensure that you have read the CircleMUD Mailing List FAQ: |
|   |
|    Or send 'info circle' to     |

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : 12/18/00 PST