What's the programming language for you?

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why? JS is not a bad language to start programming, but I’m interested in your reasoning


“I want to write device drivers and PIC1650 firmware.”

…said no one ever.


Why Do You Want to Learn to Code? ->
Be a professional developer
What Sort of Developer Do You Want to Be? ->
(looks for my job… strangely short list… nothing like my job in that list… realizes nobody would deliberately choose my job…)


This is super interesting and helped me to figure which language I’m going to continue failing to study! :smiley_cat: Why not more questions about community organizing and rough-and-ready data analysis with shoestring budget ($1M ann. or less) social justice nonprofits?

Beacause Libre Office spreadsheets! Works better and better the longer you use it. Out of the box! :wink:


Even the first page is annoying! I am not interested in four “lifestyle choices” as reasons for choosing a programming language.


I don’t see COBOL in there…


Occasionally, I have wished I was skilled enough to reverse engineer a driver for defunct hardware.

Less of late, because unsigned drivers are pretty onerous in Windows land now.


It’s simple enough, good for pretty much any purpose, you can get started by saving index.html to your desktop and refreshing it in a browser to see instant results when you mess with your code, and it will take you all the way to professional-dom if you like it. You can bail for something cleaner or more specialized if you don’t, and chances are the more specialized thing will have a similar syntax anyway.

I started out with PHP (where you basically need a goddam server stack set up just to interpret it) and Flash/Actionscript (where you needed to own a $300 application with a user interface made of the nightmares of screaming children).

Javascript is fine. It’s fine!


If you want to be a professional developer, you’re going to want to learn more than one language. Even if you use just one (which, at least given the places I’ve worked, is unlikely).


Okay, so starting with web development instead of some first steps in a console. Probably not a bad idea, but I’m not sure if the needed inclusion of mark-up languages (at least a little bit of html, css will be needed sooner than later) makes it easier to understand basic concepts.

If I’m forced to give a recommendation I would most likely end with some oldish language, well supported by an IDE. First steps with text-only, but it should be easy to add graphics.


For a professional dev I would say to start with 2 languages: a compiled language that’s current (C++, C#, Java), and a scripting language that corresponds to your chosen platform (perl, python, powershell). And of course shell scripting for that platform (bash/bat).


My daughter in middle school was taught some Javascript and she loved it. They used it in a way very similar to how my teachers used turtle graphics in Logo. They started out drawing simple shapes on the screen, then animated the shapes, ended up creating and animating an aquarium. The instant visual feedback made it very rewarding very quickly.


Yeah, I’ve been “programming” Remedy ARS (it’s not “code” per se) for about 18 years and it didn’t really quite fit into those. I tried it a couple of different ways, got C# one way, and C# or Java the other. ARS was built on C and then Java, but it’s all under the hood, and unless you had to write an API or just really had nothing better to do then one could spend an entire career working with ARS but not C or Java. (Same goes for the underlying database, e.g. Oracle or MS-SQL, but one tends to quickly have to learn those the hard way, when something’s figuratively on fire, at least I did…)

I worked in a nonprofit where we may haved used that one. … It’s been some years … may’ve been sad puppies.

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To hell with index.html - NodeJs 4 Lyfe!

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What directory is that page in?

Are you just making up this web stuff as you go?

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I’d say it’s the fastest bang for your buck, in terms of getting something up on the screen and being able to share that with your friends and the world.

On the coding side, you need nothing more than notepad and a browser. Everyone has those. It might eventually be useful to know HTML and CSS, but you can make whole games in the canvas. The Chrome browser even includes some of the best debugging tools of any development environment, and being able to iteratively try stuff out in the console is extremely valuable when learning, especially as you can change variables on the fly while your code is running.

On the sharing side, it’s never been easier to put your stuff up and let people access it at a url – whether you’re posting it to GitHub pages or just sticking it in an anonymous jsFiddle. Anyone can access it without needing to download or install anything.

So, in terms of getting people excited about programming by lowering the barriers to entry and to sharing down to the floor, I think JS is a great choice.


I’m an embedded software engineer - I love writing code to directly interface with hardware, and I followed this path because I took a PIC programming class in college. I absolutely despise writing applications. Sooooo… At least one person is saying it?


In college back in the Bronze Age I learned Fortran, Pascal, RPG, COBOL, Ada and C. More importantly, I learned how to learn programming languages.

In my career and hobbies, I’ve used, in approximate order:

SQL (a little)
GSL (in-house proprietary scripting language with a limited set of registers)
an unnamed in-house scripting language for enemy AI
a very tiny amount of x86 assembly
DirectX shader assembly, HLSL and Cg
HSL (a Java-like in-house scripting language)
Fortran (reading only, the mechanical engineers here own that code)
plain C

Of those, C++ has been the most important by far, and C# second. Those are the ones that got me jobs.