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The moose likes Cattle Drive and the fly likes JavaRanch goals?? Feedback solicited !! Big Moose Saloon
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JavaRanch goals?? Feedback solicited !!

Don Smathers
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 04, 2001
Posts: 31
The Accolades: Please don't take this communique to be anything more than what will hopefully be a friendly discussion ---
The active nit-pickers know from past e-mails that I have the
greatest admiration for what the Ranch is doing, and also nothing but the sincerest appreciation for all the time and expertise that you 'old hands' are willingly providing for the furtherence of Java programming.
The Statement: My inexperienced view of Java is that it was intended to be a strongly typed language, rich with assorted means to implement OOP, and was also intended to promote OOP, rather than the antiquated linear techniques that languages like Basic and C foisted on us.
Like many ranch hands, I am a 'sheriff' of linear programming. Consequently, it has been extremely difficult to force myself into the mind-set needed for OOP. So, now that I seem to have finally come closer to making this adjustment, , I do find it strange that the Java Ranch nit-picking process is providing encouragement to continue old habits ( via Assignment group of exercises ).
The Question: Should not the philosophical intent of JavaRanch be to promote and encourage development of the rapport that must exist between the programmer and the programming language s/he employs?
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9044
    
  10
My inexperienced view of Java is that it was intended to be a strongly typed language, rich with assorted means to implement OOP, and was also intended to promote OOP, rather than the antiquated linear techniques that languages like Basic and C foisted on us.

If you are going to write a tiny program that will be clear with a linear approach, then OO stuff just makes things less readable.

Objects are good when you will have more than one instance of an object. Sometimes one instance is good as an object, but usually not. OO is definitely a big help with large programs.

The purpose of the first few assignments is to learn how to make simple, readable, java code. We also throw in tips about optimization and style. Then when we get to the OO assignments, we don't have so much to deal with.
[This message has been edited by Marilyn deQueiroz (edited April 29, 2001).]


JavaBeginnersFaq
"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that's why they call it the present." Eleanor Roosevelt
Richard Boren
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 01, 2001
Posts: 233
Dumb question. How can you program without using linear technique? Isn't the code in the methods still linear? If not then I'm really screwed up because the guts of my methods look basically like all the code I've coded in COBOL, BASIC, VB, C, C++ ... I thought it was still there, just that OOPs let you focus on smaller units of it which could more easily be reused, modified, shared, etc.
[This message has been edited by Richard Boren (edited April 29, 2001).]
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9044
    
  10
I think the question was more related to OO Design versus Structured Programming (Linear Design). However, Richard, you are correct that linear technique is still valid.
Don Smathers
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 04, 2001
Posts: 31
Richard -- all comments are welcomed. I once was told by a rather learned man that there are NO dumb questions. Just dumb answers. Nothing personal here, because you are absolutely correct that ALL programs have linearity -- otherwise they could not execute correctly. CHAOS would win again !!
My puzzlement here really pertains as to why isn't an OOP approach acceptable, even though a 100% linear approach would also work?? In a sense I am asking why, if one is qualified, cannot one drive a race car rather than be limited to a bicycle?
Richard Boren
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 01, 2001
Posts: 233

My puzzlement here really pertains as to why isn't an OOP approach acceptable, even though a
100% linear approach would also work?? In a sense I am asking why, if one is qualified, cannot one drive a race car rather than be limited to a bicycle?

Hi Don,
We all start out on bicycles because not everyone coming to the ranch has the necessary experience to start programming in OOPs. Also it would be too much of burden on the nitpickers to try and determine each individual´┐Żs experience level and match that to a given programming level.
Better everyone start out on the same mode of transportation, else a zooming race car might just run over one us on our bicycle with training wheels

I once was told by a rather learned man that there are NO dumb questions. Just dumb answers. Nothing personal here...

Don't worry I'm not taking it that way, personal that is.

bill bozeman
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 30, 2000
Posts: 1070

In a sense I am asking why, if one is qualified, cannot one drive a race car rather than be limited to a bicycle?

The first few assignments are so easy in a sense that OO is overkill. Yes you can drive a race car, but if you were going to your friends house two doors down, would you take the race car or the bicycle? Sometimes, the answer is so simple, that doing more is overkill.
However, the real point is like Marilyn said. We want to get people used to the style guide and the way things work around here, along with simple loop and condtional statements. The OO stuff comes in later.
Bill
paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
    ∞

Cliche: When you have a shiny new hammer, all of your problems look like nails.
OO is a tool. Using OO at the wrong time makes for crappy code. Kinda like pounding a screw in with a hammer. OTOH-- Using linear or procedural programming where OO is called for is like trying to pound in a nail with a screwdriver.
The purpose of the first few assignments is to get the student familiar with some of the language fundamentals. OO is introduced later. If we started off with OO stuff, I think there would be too much room for confusion.

permaculture Wood Burning Stoves 2.0 - 4-DVD set
Pauline McNamara
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 19, 2001
Posts: 4012
    
    6
Hi Don, I just wanted to highlight some of the comments above from a beginner's perspective.
I'm new to programming, not just java, so I wouldn't even know where to put the key in that oop race car. But the cattle drive provides a great bike lane for us greenhorns, so we can start out with the basics and learn some consistent style. I for one couldn't dream of taking this on if it were set up without a gentle introduction.
From what I've read in this forum, there's even some quite experienced programmers who have benefitted from the exercises.
So much for my two cents. I hope you can find a way to enjoy the drive. I sure am, and one of these days I'll get to rev up the convertible...
cheers,
Pauline
Paul Ralph
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 10, 2000
Posts: 312
Amen, Pauline. I have been practicing coding since I had a TI99-4/A, studied FORTRAN and C++ in college, went back to a 9 month boot-campish school where I studied VB and Java and I *still* get nitpicked.
Why? It's not because I'm a bad programmer! It's because that up until now the rule was "If it works, it's perfect." Not so, here. Now I work on style and have to do a lot of refactoring. All of my programs have been nitpicked two or three times, although I hope that will change soon.
Paul R
Johannes de Jong
tumbleweed
Bartender

Joined: Jan 27, 2001
Posts: 5089
Originally posted by Richard Boren:
Dumb question

Hi Richard though I agree with the rest of your remarks, I really hope the remark above was meant as a joke. Don wanted to understand the why's, there is nothing dumb about that.
Regards
JdJ
[This message has been edited by Johannes de Jong (edited May 01, 2001).]
Richard Boren
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 01, 2001
Posts: 233
Hi Johannes,
I was the one asking the dumb question, not Don. I don't think Don took it that way. If you did Don, sorry I meant myself I should have written "I have a dumb question to ask " because that's really what I meant.
And I was half joking. I'm still insecure with my grasp of OOPs. However, the responses to my comments have at least made me feel like I'm on the right track.
Johannes de Jong
tumbleweed
Bartender

Joined: Jan 27, 2001
Posts: 5089
Sorry Richard, after re-reading your posting, I made a booboo coming down on you that way.
As for being insucure in OO, dont feel ALONE
Richard Boren
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 01, 2001
Posts: 233
No problem Johannes. You reminded me that I need to make sure my comments convey what I really mean.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
 
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