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Old 12-13-2010, 05:41 PM
cornel panceac
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

2010/12/13 Sven Aluoor <aluoor@gmail.com>

Hi folks



I have more than 12 years experience with UNIX system administration,

but I am too stupid for programming. My only programming experience is

shell scripting. I tried to learn Java, but don't understand it

because it is too complicated for my limited brainpower.



What programming language should I learn?



A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?



cheers Sven*my first language was pascal. if i'd had the opportunity, i'd start with c. herbert schildt's teach yourself c was great for me.
--
When one door is closed, another is open.

(Robert Nesta Marley)

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Old 12-13-2010, 06:08 PM
R P Herrold
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

On Mon, 13 Dec 2010, A T Williams wrote:

> *But* I am the primary developer of a large Python application
> <http://www.ohloh.net/p/coils> [113K lines and growing] and it *is( an

interesting trendlines there [soft economy, or loss of
interest in FOSS oritented languages, I wonder] -- I tinkered
with the languages displayed to display (and pairs that track
together)

C++ and Java - potentially strongly typed
Python and PHP - weakly typed
perl and Ruby - scripting without too much pain of entry

As the thread was for a newbie recommendation, I'd really
consider Ruby before any of the others, as it has a fast
learning curve and support a path that leads to better habits
of algorithmic design and correctness than perl, PHP, or
Python

Done properly, C++ and Java are just too hard unless one is
willing to invest much time to properly learning the language
tools. ... and C++ has less 'weeds' and is more free in that
pairing. The new Stroustrup intro is a gem which many have
overlooked - 'Programming: Principles and Practice Using C++'
and it is well worth considering if one intends to learn to
design and code more than casually

http://gallery.herrold.com/ohloh-languages.png

-- Russ herrold
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Old 12-13-2010, 06:15 PM
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

cornel panceac wrote:
> 2010/12/13 Sven Aluoor <aluoor@gmail.com>
>>
>> I have more than 12 years experience with UNIX system administration,
>> but I am too stupid for programming. My only programming experience is
>> shell scripting. I tried to learn Java, but don't understand it
>> because it is too complicated for my limited brainpower.
>>
>> What programming language should I learn?
>>
>> A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?
>
> my first language was pascal. if i'd had the opportunity, i'd start with
> c.
> herbert schildt's teach yourself c was great for me.

Maybe it was because I knew a number of languages before C, but I taught
myself with K&R: no fancy pictures, or huge margins... but it answered all
my questions, and had an index that was useable.

mark

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Old 12-13-2010, 07:10 PM
Mathieu Baudier
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

> What programming language should I learn?

It depends what you want to do.

- build quickly applications, reusing existing components and
understanding a lot of the Linux ecosystem
=> Python

- process quickly huge amount of text files
=> Practical Exrtaction and Reporting Language (aka. PERL, yes you can
do a lot of other things with it, but not so convincingly as with
Python, IMHO)

- performance and resource critical algorithms
=> C++

- simple, fast and powerful websites / understanding CMS such as
Drupal or Wordpress
=> PHP

- enterprise applications
=> Java
(=> or .Net, but then I think that MS Windows is a better platform
than CentOS even though I heard that Mono is working)

I'm personnally a Java developer and tend to do all of the above with Java.

If you are a sysadmin, I would recommend you Python: I don't know it
well, but all people I know who used it love it, and again there are
plenty of the software around which are based on it (also GUIs)
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Old 12-13-2010, 07:15 PM
Nick
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

On 13/12/10 16:14, Sven Aluoor wrote:
> I have more than 12 years experience with UNIX system administration,
> but I am too stupid for programming. My only programming experience is
> shell scripting. I tried to learn Java, but don't understand it
> because it is too complicated for my limited brainpower.
>
> What programming language should I learn?

This is a bit like saying "I have 12 years experience of hunting but I too
myopic to aim a pistol," then asking "which firearm should I carry?"

> A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?

C# is Microsoft's answer to Java and is about as simple.

If you need something simple, try Ook! which is designed for Orang-outangs, has
only three things to learn, and requires no typing (yet alone typing). [1]
Bonus: it even runs on the CLR.

N

1.
http://stackoverflow.com/questions/187715/what-is-your-favorite-esoteric-programming-language#187786
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Old 12-13-2010, 08:13 PM
Tom Bishop
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

LOL...great analogy..I think the details will be lost on many non firearm types...but I found it to be a great analogy...

On Mon, Dec 13, 2010 at 3:03 PM, Lamar Owen <lowen@pari.edu> wrote:

On Monday, December 13, 2010 03:15:48 pm Nick wrote:

> This is a bit like saying "I have 12 years experience of hunting but I too

> myopic to aim a pistol," then asking "which firearm should I carry?"



To an extent; I read it more along the lines of 'I have 12 years experience hunting with a scoped rifle but am too nearsighted to aim a regular pistol with iron sights, what sort of handgun would you recommend' to which I would answer 'Remington XP-100 in .223 Remington, .308 Winchester, or .35 Remington, depending on the size game hunted, *or Thompson-Center Contender, which should be chambered in something like .223 Remington for small game, .30-30 or .243 Winchester for medium game, and .45-70 for larger game. *Recoil in the larger calibers will be significant. *Scopes for these handguns are pretty much required, and range is comparable to a short carbine in the same caliber.'




In other words, the choice of a new programming language has something to do with what you're going to do with it. *And much like trying to use a T/C Contender in .45-70 Government as a first hunting handgun, there are some languages that aren't really suitable for a first language. *You need to start with something a little easier to handle, like a Ruger Blackhawk or an S&W L- or N-frame in .357 Maximum; you can load it with .38 S&W Special for a fairly easy to shoot handgun, and graduate up through .357 S&W Magnum and the hard-hitting .357 Remington Maximum; you could even get something in .357 SuperMag..... And scopes are available for that frame.....




If you've done shell scripting, pick something that can build from that; I mentioned Python, but Perl or Ruby would be just a good, really. *The key point is to build on something with some familiarity, and while strongly-typed languages have their uses and strengths, 'scripting' languages are possibly going to be an easier learn.


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Old 12-13-2010, 08:49 PM
Warren Young
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

On 12/13/2010 9:37 AM, Les Mikesell wrote:
> On 12/13/2010 10:14 AM, Sven Aluoor wrote:
>> A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?

I doubt you'll find it any less complex than Java. The two are very
similar, conceptually. C# exists more for political and business
reasons than technical ones; it fills the same space Java could fill, in
a platform-agnostic world.

Another poster mentioned a documentation advantage, but I imagine a lot
of that advantage is eroded by being Windows and Microsoft centric. In
any case, I don't think the documentation advantage is enough to solve
the core problem you likely had with Java, which C# shares, that being
its relative verbosity and strictness.

Your next step should be to something simpler, and with less of a
difference to your existing experience.

> Perl is probably the easiest next step for someone who has shell
> scripting experience.

Seconded.

I frequently translate shell scripts to Perl when I run into one of the
many limitations of shell scripting. Even when I've managed to build
something in shell hundreds of lines long before I run into one of these
walls, the process is always quick.

I say this as someone who has written substantial programs in a dozen
different programming languages, and sampled probably a dozen more.
Perl is your best next step.

Don't be distracted by the Perl 6 noise. Perl 6 has been "coming" for a
decade now, and although it's finally in something like a generally
useful state now, it's still not as useful as Perl 5 is today. Leave
Perl 6 to the early adopters, and don't worry that you aren't using the
newest cool-guy version yet. You aren't yet late enough to the party to
get plenty of use out of Perl 5 before you have to worry about being
forced to move to Perl 6; that won't happen for years yet.
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Old 12-13-2010, 08:51 PM
Patrick Lists
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

On 12/13/2010 05:14 PM, Sven Aluoor wrote:
> Hi folks
>
> I have more than 12 years experience with UNIX system administration,
> but I am too stupid for programming. My only programming experience is
> shell scripting. I tried to learn Java, but don't understand it
> because it is too complicated for my limited brainpower.
>
> What programming language should I learn?
>
> A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?

Have a look at Lua (www.lua.org). Imo it's quite readable and less
challenging than C, C++, C#, Java, Mono etc. There are a couple of Lua
books listed here: http://www.lua.org/docs.html#books
I would recommend getting Programming in Lua (2nd ed), Lua Programming
Gems and if you like a reference on paper then the Lua 5.1 Reference
Manual too (you support the project by buying these books). Some
examples and tutorials: http://lua-users.org/wiki/TutorialDirectory

Whatever you decide to learn, have fun!

Regards,
Patrick
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Old 12-13-2010, 09:02 PM
Adam Tauno Williams
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

On Mon, 2010-12-13 at 14:49 -0700, Warren Young wrote:
> On 12/13/2010 9:37 AM, Les Mikesell wrote:
> > On 12/13/2010 10:14 AM, Sven Aluoor wrote:
> >> A friend said that C-Sharp (Mono) is very simple. Is this true?
> I doubt you'll find it any less complex than Java. The two are very
> similar, conceptually. C# exists more for political and business
> reasons than technical ones; it fills the same space Java could fill, in
> a platform-agnostic world.

False. C# has significant technical advantages over Java - good
Generics and LINQ just being two.

Another advantage over Java is the namespaces were not created by a
addled drug addict. Seriously "Xalan", "Xerces", and "Struts"? (just to
name three). Yea, that is clear. I'll take C# "System.Xml" and
"System.ComponentModel" everyday.

> Another poster mentioned a documentation advantage, but I imagine a lot
> of that advantage is eroded by being Windows and Microsoft centric.

No, not really. The portability is extremely good. Good code is strict code.

> any case, I don't think the documentation advantage is enough to solve
> the core problem you likely had with Java, which C# shares, that being
> its relative verbosity and strictness.

Strictness is a *feature*. Especially for someone who wants to
initially learn programming.

> > Perl is probably the easiest next step for someone who has shell
> > scripting experience.
> Seconded.

-1 Perl is a withering dinosaur.

> Don't be distracted by the Perl 6 noise. Perl 6 has been "coming" for a
> decade now,

+1

I expect by the time P6 arrives very few people will care; Perl has
been fading for a long time.

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Old 12-13-2010, 09:28 PM
 
Default OT: programming language for morons (newbie friendly language in Open Source world)

Warren Young wrote:
> On 12/13/2010 9:37 AM, Les Mikesell wrote:
>> On 12/13/2010 10:14 AM, Sven Aluoor wrote:
<snip>
> Your next step should be to something simpler, and with less of a
> difference to your existing experience.
>
>> Perl is probably the easiest next step for someone who has shell
>> scripting experience.
>
> Seconded.

Thirded. And if you eventually want to program, perl uses C syntax
(mostly... but then, almost everything does these days, with exceptions
like python), and it's not a big stretch to move. The advantage of going
to perl is a) it's a scripting language, and so you get faster debugging,
and b) all versions of *Nix have it installed, and, speaking of being
platform-agnostic, it runs on all versions of WinDoze.
<snip>
> I say this as someone who has written substantial programs in a dozen
> different programming languages, and sampled probably a dozen more.
> Perl is your best next step.

Same here. Six heavily, a couple not much, and all shells. And M$
batchfiles, long ago.
<snip>
Try perl, you'll like it. We'll ignore the fact that, back in the
nineties, at the end of the 104 or so page man page, the secret was that
it stood for P(athologically) E(clectic) R(ubbish) L(ister)....

mark

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