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question on notepad

 
Greenhorn
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hi, i have this worksheet for class that asks the following question:
Someone wants to create files of debators who will be entering a tournament next month. What instructions should be given about typing these files?
i'm a bit confused about this question because i have never used notepad to write programs or files. Is there a certain way of writing these files in notepad? and what instructions should one give?
 
Sheriff
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Moving this to the General Computing forum...
 
author
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Writing in notepad is no different then writing in any word processor...
I do most of my coidng with notepad since it does not give any extra junk other things tends to do...
 
lowercase baba
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what i think they want is simply the instructions for how you, as the programmer, want the data formatted. for example,
1) each debater's information should be on a single line. carraige returns are only to be used when starting a new person's info.
2) each field should be separated by a comma
3) the order of the fields should be lastname, firstname, age, DOB, etc.
4) there is no limit to the size of any specific field, but some may be truncated
and so on. the specific rules will vary depending on the application you will (probably) write to read the info. should it be named something specific or in a certain place? what format should it be? .txt, .rtf, .doc? are blank lines acceptable? how will you handle missing information? are all fields required?
Speaking as a teacher (and life-long learner), it would be an interesting experiment to ask my students to come up with specs for a program's input file. Then, have them write a program to read the file. Then, i'd create a file that followed their specs, and see how hard/easy it would be to crash the program. Not to be mean, but to really illustrate how hard it is to write specs...
 
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