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Am I Just Bad At Java? [Java Rant]

 
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Graham Wolk wrote: I can easily compile "Hello World!" no problem, but that's because it's easy and I have it memorized by this point.


A humble point from another Greenhorn trying to make his place in the java programming sector.

You said you have memorized a hello world program.
Consider the following hello world program.



Have you ever thought why its written so?? why is there static infront of the main method? Why is it "String[]" and not "string"? what is public?? what is a void main?? why do some classes have main() where as some dont? what are objects and why they exist? how the memory is managed? where the tiny bytes and bits go? Take care of the little things and the big things will take care of itself. NO BODY learns java in a month of 2.. it takes time to understand a few concepts. "The mind of a programmer" will come before you realise that.
 
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I know that feeling - fellow Comp Sci student here as well! It takes a while and a lot of practise! I felt like I struggled a lot in comparison with other people. The best thing for me was sitting looking at code,you can get quizzes on your phone,Udemy offer free step by step course,Coding Bat,books like Head First Java are great!.

Also definitely download the programs you can get from the Oracle site, they helped me learn as I switched the stuff to make it fit my needs - trust me it will come. I'm in my third year of uni out in industry and I'm allowed to sit all day and code stuff step by step. Before you code anyhting,try and sit with a pen and paper and map out all the classes and methods you need, what do you want your code to actually do. Helped me - I had terrible logic.

I've found asking people on here when I don't understand still can still be quite helpful as they make you think rather than just giving you the answer. Good luck, the penny will drop sooner or later, it felt great when it did for me, it can be frustrating, just keep coding and don't give up!
 
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Graham Wolk wrote:Again, I thank you all for the generous words of encouragement and reinforcement. I definitely do enjoy Java, and I honestly believe I have improved since I first posted this topic. I have just been doing problems and gradually learning how a completed program should look.


And that's (I suspect) the main thing you're learning: programming is not simple. If it was, everybody would be doing it, and it wouldn't be anywhere near as interesting.

That's what I like about that Peter Norvig article so much; he explains why. If you're intelligent (as I suspect you are), you want a challenge; all he's saying is that it's a long haul, and it's not for the faint of heart - I've been at it for nearly 40 years (Nov, '76) and I'm still learning stuff.

And I'm definitely not the record-holder here (yet).

Winston
 
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Graham Wolk wrote:Again, I thank you all for the generous words of encouragement and reinforcement. I definitely do enjoy Java, and I honestly believe I have improved since I first posted this topic. I have just been doing problems and gradually learning how a completed program should look. One thing that I have discovered to do is to look at completed programs, type them into NetBeans myself, then look at how it's made. Then, I will erase it and retype it the best I can from memory, formulating it each time over and over until I have fully got it completed and have redone each step so many times I understand the process.



I've been doing java for about a year and continue to have the same problems you do. It's very frustrating to sit for long periods of time thinking "what the f*** am I supposed to do?" only to find out you're missing some snippet of code you have no idea even exists. There have been several weeks I've spent over 15 hours trying to figure out two to three problems in my book only to eventually find out nothing in my book would have helped me. Like you note about || or other code when you see the problem, I find that has happened a lot with me and luckily people online were helpful. Personally, I would avoid the website stackoverflow. At least for beginning stuff I find it's more confusing than worth it. Code Ranch is by far the best place I've found and everyone is really patient and helpful. It's actually quite touching so many people help you despite the fact they'll probably never meet you.

I don't know what your financial situation is like but I also ordered a lot of books about programming in general, computer science, and Java books. I normally browse Amazon and find an old edition (from about a few years ago or so) that you can get super cheap. I'm sure you can find everything online but I sit at a computer all day so it's a little break for my eyes.

Anyway, I hope you stick with it and know you are definitely not alone in this. It's hard.
 
Winston Gutkowski
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Ryan Bishop wrote:Code Ranch is by far the best place I've found and everyone is really patient and helpful. It's actually quite touching so many people help you despite the fact they'll probably never meet you.


I suspect it's because most of us are anarchists at heart.

We like free code, and open systems; and you don't get that without sharing ideas. Why not a bit of knowledge too?

But thanks for the kind words about the Ranch.

Winston
 
Sooraj Rajagopalan
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Ryan Bishop wrote: Personally, I would avoid the website stackoverflow. At least for beginning stuff I find it's more confusing than worth it. Code Ranch is by far the best place I've found and everyone is really patient and helpful. It's actually quite touching so many people help you despite the fact they'll probably never meet you.


True that... You eventually end up embarrassed and frustrated using stackoverflow.
 
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Welcome Graham Wolk

If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.
- Henry Ford



Stop and Just have fun with Java
 
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I'm still here watching this thread, and again thank you guys for being so understanding and helpful with a Java novice at heart.

I unfortunately failed my first exam in my class... It was four problems, I did maybe almost the full first problem, then only started the other three problems.

But none of that mattered because I didn't put it in the dropbox correctly, I only put the class files into the shared folder, which I guess the teacher can't open or use to view my code.

I had no idea it wouldn't work, so I guess that's just another neophyte's mistake

I would email him if I could send the correct folder, but I'm already embarrassed enough, he'll probably stick it right to me anyways and tell me he already graded the exams and I'm **** out of luck.
 
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So you'll guarantee that he'll not considered your assignment by just assuming that he won't? Does that make sense? Self-fullfilling prophecy.


I know someone like this and he is his own worst enemy: "I think I will fail at XYZ so I won't event attempt XYZ, thereby guaranteeing that I will fail at XYZ."
 
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Sounds like your school uses D2L. I did the same thing on my first Dropbox submitted assignment. I forgot to include the .java files in the .jar I was required to submit... I was so frustrated at myself, but I emailed the instructor and ate some crow. Thing was, most of the class made the same mistake, so the teacher gave everyone a pass who had emailed him.

If you don't step up to the plate, you will fail for sure. Jose Altuve was the best hitter in Major League Baseball this year with .342. He struck out over 65% of the time, but would have struck out 100% of the time if he hadn't at least tried. If your instructor says "no", you are no worse off then you are now. If he says "yes", you come out better.
 
Graham Wolk
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Bear Bibeault wrote:So you'll guarantee that he'll not considered your assignment by just assuming that he won't? Does that make sense? Self-fullfilling prophecy.


I know someone like this and he is his own worst enemy: "I think I will fail at XYZ so I won't event attempt XYZ, thereby guaranteeing that I will fail at XYZ."




Chris R Barrett wrote:Sounds like your school uses D2L. I did the same thing on my first Dropbox submitted assignment. I forgot to include the .java files in the .jar I was required to submit... I was so frustrated at myself, but I emailed the instructor and ate some crow. Thing was, most of the class made the same mistake, so the teacher gave everyone a pass who had emailed him.

If you don't step up to the plate, you will fail for sure. Jose Altuve was the best hitter in Major League Baseball this year with .342. He struck out over 65% of the time, but would have struck out 100% of the time if he hadn't at least tried. If your instructor says "no", you are no worse off then you are now. If he says "yes", you come out better.





I emailed him. After reading your comments I realize you're both right. I know even if he turns me down it will still be better than having not trying at all. I just know he has a very 'professional' attitude about him and he seems to not enjoy catering to beginners mistakes, which I think is a little dumb, but then again, he makes the grades and the rules.
 
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A little word of wisdom:

There are usually two kinds of people in the world who are both correct... People who believe they can and people who believe they can't...

What do you believe?
 
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Graham,

I can really relate to your original post. I am an older career changer that has been learning Java for two years now. I still don't consider myself a developer. I have written hundreds of small programs and a tutorial based app for my Android phone that I was able to customize. At present, I am studying for the first Java certification and hope to sit the exam in December.

I have an IT job where I have a title of Lead Developer. This is mainly a design/front end coding position. I have a studio art degree which means that I am a very visual learner. I too had much trouble with these concepts, still do at times, because not only am I on my own (no mentorship, no instruction) but I think the overall methods used to teach computer languages are anything but visual. You change the code you get a different answer... That doesn't teach you exactly how things work and it can be frustrating. And yes, some seem to get it easier.

I really couldn't do anything right until I could mentally visualize the stack, the heap, objects, the inheritance tree of the objects/classes I was working with, and the order in which fields get initialized. Just knowing when the increment operator of a for loop actually increments (or decrements) a variable was a huge mystery at first. For some people though, that needs no explanation.

I had to draw lots of pictures and diagrams. I stopped coding on the computer and started writing all of this down on paper. I created visually engaging diagrams that I hung in my cube at work so I could stare at them in my spare time.

There haven't been any real aha moments over the last few years. Instead of waiting for that big bulb to light up it's more like a long string of christmas lights that come on one at at time. Just figure out what kind of learner you are and compensate for the my-way-or-the-highway attitude that many college profs seem to have. Don't quit. Having instruction, competition, and the time to do this is a huge gift and you need to realize this and take advantage of it. Don't be afraid to sit down with your prof and explain your problem. He/she might be able to help and you might make them realize how passionate you are about the subject. Guarantee, part of your grade is subjective and if you wind up with a 79 average that conversation just might get you the B that you really deserve.

Good luck, you'll do fine.
 
Bear Bibeault
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Really good post, Blake. And, as another visual learner, I really like your technique for drawing visualizations of the concepts.

I have awarded you a cow for your most excellent response.
 
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Graham Wolk wrote:Is that how people learn java from scratch? Do they just have to read each individual method and class in the API index to see which one they have to use to solve the problem?


That's the way I learned it. Sorry, man. You don't have to memorisew them (that's why the docs are there), but you do have to kinda-sorta know what's in there so you can refer back to it when you need to. The three core parts of the java platform API are in java.lang, java.util, and (arguably) java.io . There is no substitute for reading the documentation, although you can get pretty far with google. With respect to the language - what the operators are, what they do - they are defined in the Java Language Specification and yes, I learned Java from scratch back in '99 by reading that. Ignore the bits you don't understand (for the moment), go back to it a bit later on as your course introduces new concepts.

(BTW: everything in computing is the same. Any language, any system - you must read the docs. There is no other way.)

Graham Wolk wrote:I watch these tutorial videos and the instructor just throws around these values like it's nothing!


I have always disliked tutorials, and have seldom found them useful.

Graham Wolk wrote:And to top the *** cake all off with the *** icing, I have a University Study class for Computer Science students in which the professor tells us multiple times: "I'm gonna be honest with you all, more than half of you aren't going to be here for the spring semester. If I see 40 out of 60 of you here, I'll be elated. If I see 30 out of 60 here, I'll be happy. If I see 20 out of 60 here, it will be normal like other years."


Welcome to the education business. So long as they have you on the hook for a student loan, that's really all they care about.

Graham Wolk wrote:but why why why in the WORLD would you tell a class of aspiring computer science majors that?


To get rid of the people who just can't code. The plan is to pull in a whole slew of people, sign them up, and then savagely whittle them don in the first few semesters. The alternative would be giving people an aptitude test - and how are you going to know that your aptitude test is filtering out the right people?

Yeah, it sucks. Sorry.
 
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Paul Murray-Cbr wrote:To get rid of the people who just can't code. The plan is to pull in a whole slew of people, sign them up, and then savagely whittle them don in the first few semesters. The alternative would be giving people an aptitude test - and how are you going to know that your aptitude test is filtering out the right people?


Aside from the view of universities jus wanting your money, the other end is people who signed up because "Computer Science pays well." Some of those people wind up being good at it and others do not. That fact that you are reflecting on how you are doing puts you ahead of them.
 
Winston Gutkowski
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Blake Edward wrote:I can really relate to your original post...


Excellent post. Now a two-cow-er (quite a rarity). Well done Blake.

...I had to draw lots of pictures and diagrams. I stopped coding on the computer and started writing all of this down on paper. I created visually engaging diagrams that I hung in my cube at work so I could stare at them in my spare time.


Oddly enough, I'm (generally) the exact opposite. I need to see things written down, and I'm a lousy GUI programmer because I'm not prepared to spend the time it takes to learn it properly. "Bouncing bubbles" just don't toot my trumpet in the way that a really quick sort does.

I did have the chance to work with a "visual" lady when I was doing my diploma though; and we were the ONLY pair that completed one of the assigned projects, basically because we knew our strengths, and could work almost independently - and I suspect that I would have failed it miserably if it hadn't been for her; so I'm well aware that it takes all sorts to make a programmer.

But the one thing I'm pretty certain about is your statement: "I stopped coding on the computer and started writing all of this down on paper", which is why I wrote the StopCoding page. And it's nice to hear it confirmed by a "vizzy".

That's what seems to separate us normal homo sapiens from the "Binars" of this world (and believe me, I've met a few) - the ability to visualise code, as opposed to the thing it's trying to do (or be). And I'm not at all sure that actually being a Binar is a good thing - even in our business.

I don't actually like looking at source code on a screen (although I'm getting better). I'm much happier down my local poring over a few pages of printout - or some diagrams - with a nice pint of beer.

And maybe some good jazz.

Winston
 
Graham Wolk
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Oh boy... Guys, I need some more advice here.

So I emailed my professor about the exam being regraded and put in the correct files. What he responded was his questioning that he only saw a few lines of code, some printed integers, and the other three were pretty much blank.

The only problem is, this is my code for the exam......

So basically he is almost rhetorically confused, I honestly think he genuinely expected more to be done, but I seriously only had a couple lines of code and that's about it, as I really had no idea what to be done on the exam.

What do I say? Was it just a mistake in general to send him an email about this if I didn't even have all that much code to begin with? :/
 
Winston Gutkowski
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Graham Wolk wrote:So basically he is almost rhetorically confused, I honestly think he genuinely expected more to be done, but I seriously only had a couple lines of code and that's about it, as I really had no idea what to be done on the exam.
What do I say? Was it just a mistake in general to send him an email about this if I didn't even have all that much code to begin with? :/


I doubt whether sending him an e-mail was the problem - in fact, one might ask why you didn't do it a LOT sooner (ie, well before the exam you got bad marks on).

Unfortunately, without knowing more of the details, we can only speculate; but it sounds to me like the lack of content has to do with the fact that you simply don't know what to do (correct me if I'm wrong) - and in that case, you should have highlighted this as an issue long before it got to this stage.

Unless your teacher(s) are complete bastards, they want you to succeed; but they can't help you much if they don't KNOW there's a problem.
It's possible that you could benefit from a different approach - eg, more visual aids, individual tuition, checking for dyslexia, etc ... - but if you don't let anyone know there's an issue because you don't want to be labelled as "dumb" (more speculation), there's really very little they can do.

Clearly there's a huge disparity between what you've done, and what they were expecting. What you have to do now is work out why.

Maybe a good place to start would be to ask what WAS (or is) expected.

My 2¢.

Winston
 
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Graham,

A quick story. I have a BFA in studio art. I had to take a slew of art history classes and write papers in these classes. In one class, 20th century art, I wrote a paper on Robert Rauschenberg. It was a solid, well written paper and was worth half my grade in this class. It got an "F". I had not researched my sources well and omitted a well regarded source on this artist from my research.

I scheduled an office visit with my prof, who I thought was being a little uptight about it all, and he made realize that the only thing expected of me was excellence. He had art history majors in the class and the bar was set very high. There was no exception for me.

He gave me two weeks to write it over (being humble and asking for another chance sometimes works out) but the highest grade I could earn on the rewrite was a "C". So I wrote it over, got my "C", made a "C" in his class and vowed to never be unprepared and clueless like that again. I actually took another class that he taught simply because I knew what his standards were and I wanted to meet them. I made a hard earned "B" in that class and eventually he and I became friends.

Point is, there were people that submitted all of the files your prof asked for and satisfied all of the requirements of the test and passed it. I would ask them how they knew to do this.
 
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While others encourage you to go on, I think that they are missing the main point. I agree that you can review programs and learn from this technique, but rewrite from scratch trying to remember the original code is just bad and this probably means that you don't have strong analytical skills. One should review the code and understand what is going on there! This is programming, not literature!

I think your problem is older, I guess you haven't really tried to play with Math in High School. Math can teach you how to think. I have almost failed my Physics exam in High School. I have studied 2 weeks before the main exam and I've passed it. I was able to solve quite a few types of exercises, but it wasn't a natural thing for me. I've passed my exam because I really had to pass it, but otherwise, I'd choose to try other paths. No, I don't usually give up, but I think that people should do what they love AND they know best. In my case, others, more talented than me in Physics, will do what they know best, Physics.

Everybody can be a programmer. But real programming is art and should be done by talented programmers. If you want to work in IT field, programming will have to be your second nature, even if you're just a tester or just an IT Support guy. You will have to throw pieces of code from time to time, but some people will not accept it. I'm a talented programmer, I love what I do and I am pretty good at it. If you choose a career, you have to think that if you're just an average, you will drop out sooner or later(managers always want more and more, pressure will increase over time if you're not great). It is hard to change careers, it is better to think sooner 'what I like and what is my main skill?' and choose the right career. If you still think you can become a great programmer and do that your entire life, go on. If you're not 100% sure, choose another path. The salary won't be the same, programming is indeed pretty well rewarded, but you will have a great job. You don't want to have a manager which you can't handle because your limits. You will think that programming is a shitty job and that would be just sad. Remember, everybody can be average in one area, but everybody has an extraordinary skill that just a few have it too. Find the awesomeness inside you, explore it, like it and do that for a living.

I really hope that forum admins won't delete this. It's my sincere point of view. Everybody wants a good paying job, but money isn't everything. Career is what you trained for your entire life.
 
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Silviu Burcea wrote: . . .
I really hope that forum admins won't delete this. . . .

No, we shan't delete it. We only delete things if they are offensive, breach of copyright or breach the rules of the forum.

Or unnecessary duplication.

If we deleted that, we would be stifling discussion. We might disagree with you, but we shall make sure you have the opportunity to speak.
 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Silviu Burcea wrote:managers always want more and more, pressure will increase over time if you're not great


Pressure increases over time regardless. That's one reason it is important to keep growing one's skills.
 
Winston Gutkowski
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Pressure increases over time regardless. That's one reason it is important to keep growing one's skills.


Unless you're a teacher and get to release it on your students. Pity they don't allow clubs in the classroom any more.

And again, I'm not sure that increasing his skills is Graham's problem (although we haven't heard from him in a while). It sounds much more like a "credit crunch": ie, he isn't going to be allowed to continue his studies unless he gets the requisite credits.

Winston
 
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:

Silviu Burcea wrote:managers always want more and more, pressure will increase over time if you're not great


Pressure increases over time regardless. That's one reason it is important to keep growing one's skills.



Completely agree, but if you find it hard to improve, you won't have any chances to handle the pressure.
 
Graham Wolk
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Oops, accidentally added my message inside Winston's quotes. Here's my post:

Exactly this. I have been very busy and have been away from these forums for a while, but I can confirm that it is more like a "credit crunch". Do I love computers? Abso-f-ing- lutely. Do I think programming is interesting/cool/awesome/amazing/magical/something I could do for the rest of my life/something I could spend hours on and not get bored/something I like to do? Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, and yes. But my problem is not my lack of interest in the field, my problem is working at the pace of the class/professor and succeeding a passing grade in a class.

I have come a long way since my first post in this thread. And I am proud of that. I have become more proficient in Java and I continue to learn new things. I still love the major I've chosen.

But do I worry constantly about not making the cut? You bet your ass I do. I don't want anyone in this thread to think I'm just skimping along in the major just because it pays well or maybe I like to game a lot on the computer. I really do LOVE everything about computers. It would be my dream job to have someone pay me to work with computers.

So as a result, I do the only thing I can do- keep trying, and try harder and harder. I believe in myself and that I will pass. But there is always that nagging feeling in the back of my mind that what happens if I don't, and if I really can't make the cut? But I guess no one can predict the future, and only time will tell.
 
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Checkout John Purcell at caveofprogramming (i used his free multithreading course a while back). He has a free Java for complete beginners course, but the playlist is on youtube here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7WiPGP_0AUA&list=PL9DF6E4B45C36D411

I would recommend as he goes through it all in detail on video - so you can see with your eyes, and listen to the explanations, and pause & rewind as needed.
 
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I forgot to say, re the teacher saying that half will drop out...

Perhaps he thinks you needed to hear it. On my BSc software engineering course 13 years ago we started with about 20. At the end there were 4 of us.
People don't always realise that the lectures will only give you enough to get started - you will need to practise in your own time to get competent, and that can be tough to start with.

The good news is that the web has come a long way since I studied - I spent a fortune on books at the time.

If its not already been mentioned in this thread, the JLS (java language specification) will explain all of the different elements of the language. It won't make much sense if you read it front to back, but if you're not sure about something you could look up the appropriate section. it might be more efficient sometimes than trawling the net for tutorials who reference it all indirectly.
 
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Aaron Shawlington wrote:we started with about 20. At the end there were 4 of us.


That's about par with my own experience.

Far be it for anyone here to try to dissuade you from chasing your dream but I have to echo Silviu's thoughts and quote Dirty Harry: "A man's got to know his own limitations." That said, sometimes it takes a while for things to click but when they do, the sailing gets much smoother from there. The good thing is you still have time to figure out if you're really cut out for this kind of work or not. I spent almost 9 years in college and only discovered that I had an aptitude for programming two years before finally graduating. Admittedly, a good part of those 9 years were NOT spent with my nose in the books, if you know what I mean. I graduated with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering but the Computer Science courses I took during my last two years in school was what got me into this profession. Never had a job as a mechanical engineer though.
 
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Aaron Shawlington wrote: . . . the JLS (java language specification) will explain all of the different elements of the language. . . .

We usually keep quiet about the JLS because we know how difficult it can be to understand.
 
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Joe Ess wrote:
Camp outside your professor's office. Ask lots of questions. You paid for the class. Get your money's worth!


This is the best advice. I am a complete noob here, and I struggle, but when I hit a brick wall, I step back and try to figure out how to bring it down. Hurdles. They are common for me, but I remain firm in that time I will learn this stuff. As a matter of fact, I came across your post while I was about to make a post where I need help. They will not give me the answer. They will not spoon feed me. They will tell me to look into a subject, or they will advise me that my problem is in #-line of my code. Then the rest is up to me. If you find yourself not understanding, post what you do not understand here, and camp the *** out at his doorstep and show him that you are passionate about this (hint, computers) and you will do the hard work required to reach your goal. I have about two hours a week to dedicate to learning Java as I am a full-time student (no programming classes...yet), father, husband and spend what little time I have job hunting. Trust me, when I do get to those two hours (which I did last night), I buckle down, turn off my phone, turn off Outlook, turn off TweetDeck and put on a Dallas Cowgirls shirt to turn off the wife (and I hate them more than she does) to alleviate any and all distractions. Oh, and yes, the kids are in bed by this time. Then, when all is ready: remove all doubt. Realize that it sucks. It is hard. It is going to test your patience and everything else it can. But in the end, turn on persistence, confidence and patience. You can, and with enough work... will, excel and meet your goal.

I suck at this stuff. Now. But in a year or so... well, I guess we will see then.

Best of luck; cheers,

-Java
 
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Rodge Paroissiaux wrote:I suck at this stuff. Now. But in a year or so... well, I guess we will see then.


You just reminded me of something our own Cowgirl extraordinaire, Kathy Sierra, wrote: http://headrush.typepad.com/creating_passionate_users/2005/10/getting_users_p.html

I think the suck threshold and passion threshold apply when you're learning how to program, too. So, yeah, stick with it and try to get over that suck threshold. You might find it rough going trying to get over that "wall" but once you get past it, the sense of accomplishment you get is a great rush.
 
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Junilu Lacar wrote:

Rodge Paroissiaux wrote:I suck at this stuff. Now. But in a year or so... well, I guess we will see then.


You just reminded me of something our own Cowgirl extraordinaire, Kathy Sierra, wrote: http://headrush.typepad.com/creating_passionate_users/2005/10/getting_users_p.html

I think the suck threshold and passion threshold apply when you're learning how to program, too. So, yeah, stick with it and try to get over that suck threshold. You might find it rough going trying to get over that "wall" but once you get past it, the sense of accomplishment you get is a great rush.



Screw getting over it. I did enough of the over the top stuff in my military days. I am tearing those suckers down! I just need a decent method... tearDown( ), perhaps? BLAHAHAHAHA!

That is a nice read, I particularly liked the "Don't you DARE throw out that stack of journals, magazine articles, web printouts, partly-read books, and blogs. I really am going to get to them." part. It reminds me of a friend of mine who wanted to master Photoshop and bought a new Canon DSLR for about $1200, a few expensive lenses and about a dozen books. I was given the books he just wanted to throw away about a year later so I donated them to the library. He wanted my opinion on why he never finished it and I just assumed the following, "Because you spent your money, before you spent your time." Had he just taken one book and given it a whirl, he would have realized it wasn't what he wanted. Needless to say, he will spend his time first next time, not his money. I didn't go out and buy a Java book until I knew I was up for the challenge. And I use it rarely as what I am learning in the beginning phase is in troves online, so the book is there only when I do not have an internet connection and to reference and highlight the stuff I learn through tutorials and reading online. Yes, it is an odd approach, but it is one I am faithful in and I know I can do this. I just need more time, but until I graduate, I will stick to my 2 hours a week and hope I learn enough to become better than any other people I will be considered against in hiring in three to four years.

Good read indeed, thank you for that!
 
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Rodge Paroissiaux wrote:That is a nice read, I particularly liked the "Don't you DARE throw out that stack of journals, magazine articles, web printouts, partly-read books, and blogs. I really am going to get to them." part.


That resonates with me, too. The now long-defunct Computer Language magazine printed a letter of mine to the editor confirming their description of their typical reader as middle-aged and someone who never threw out old issues of computer magazines. I don't know if I'm still middle-aged anymore —am I really looking at another half a century before I check out?!! —but I admit to having an ever-growing collection of I'll-get-to-reading-them-some-time magazines in the basement.
 
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Graham Wolk wrote:Oh boy... Guys, I need some more advice here.

So I emailed my professor about the exam being regraded and put in the correct files. What he responded was his questioning that he only saw a few lines of code, some printed integers, and the other three were pretty much blank.

The only problem is, this is my code for the exam......

So basically he is almost rhetorically confused, I honestly think he genuinely expected more to be done, but I seriously only had a couple lines of code and that's about it, as I really had no idea what to be done on the exam.

What do I say? Was it just a mistake in general to send him an email about this if I didn't even have all that much code to begin with? :/



Never, ever allow him to discourage you. We all make mistakes, and if you are new to school, or even a Sophomore, you are still learning to deal with professors and their differences in teaching. And when you receive emails like the one mentioned here, you can always clarify. Clarification is usually a good thing, and will likely not hurt you as bad as not clarifying. I know it has been a week and you have likely resolved this by now, but your reply could have been something like this:

"Sir/Ma'am, Yes, there were only a few lines as you mentioned, but that is what you asked for from me. If not, can I set up a time to meet with you in person and discuss this further? I may be wrong in what you want and I want to fix that immediately. As for the blank ones, I have screenshots on my end I can send you for now, until I can resolve why you do not see what I do. I would like to stop by and see you in person, is this feasible? Please advise."

If your professor is professional, being so in return is a huge bonus to them and you.

Junilu Lacar wrote:

Rodge Paroissiaux wrote:That is a nice read, I particularly liked the "Don't you DARE throw out that stack of journals, magazine articles, web printouts, partly-read books, and blogs. I really am going to get to them." part.


That resonates with me, too. The now long-defunct Computer Language magazine printed a letter of mine to the editor confirming their description of their typical reader as middle-aged and someone who never threw out old issues of computer magazines. I don't know if I'm still middle-aged anymore —am I really looking at another half a century before I check out?!! —but I admit to having an ever-growing collection of I'll-get-to-reading-them-some-time magazines in the basement.



I still have computer building and [used to] Nintendo Power magazines from basically their inception. I gave my nephew, who is in college for game design, all of my NP's hoping they would spark in him the old way of the Nintendo Force design and limitations to help him develop a different approach to gaming. There is nothing wrong with hoarding things that bring you enjoyment (unless the hoarding gets out of hand for friends and family to be happy with you). Not that you hoard, I am just saying, I had boxes of Nintendo Power, and the others range from Smart Computing to PC Gamer to Popular Mechanics for all things computers/technology, but I kept them neatly stored in air-tight bags then boxes safely out of sight and away from the children who would bring destruction to them.

 
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I totally feel you on this, this is my first year at the University and I'm getting a computer science degree as well, I just got done with the most difficult assignment I've had and it honestly pisses me off every time I get an error but I don't know about you but the feeling when you finally get the program to run correctly is the best feeling on earth. It's what I use as motivation, the chance to get to feel that feeling, maybe you can relate and try to use that as well! Good luck to the both of us because this is easily the hardest class I've ever taken.
 
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Michaell Sam wrote:I don't know about you but the feeling when you finally get the program to run correctly is the best feeling on earth. It's what I use as motivation, the chance to get to feel that feeling, maybe you can relate and try to use that as well!


If you like that feeling, then you should try to learn Test-Driven Development (I've said this so many times I won't be surprised if I get the unofficial nickname of "TDD Pimp" around here -- ah well). Anyway, we TDD'ers call this the "Green Bar addiction" and yes, it's a great feeling.
 
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Graham Wolk wrote:I know this isn't a coding question or anything like that, but I started my Compsci class about 4 weeks ago, and so far I've been having trouble with it. The class is Java 1-Object Oriented Java. I know a lot of the terms already, such as classes, methods, objects, blah blah blah, if we had a vocabulary test I'd ace it. I can easily compile "Hello World!" no problem, but that's because it's easy and I have it memorized by this point.

However, I am struggling with just general problems. I'm trying some practice problems on codingBat my teacher set up, and I just can't seem to get any of them right. I try to manipulate the code to how I think it should work, and it comes out wrong.

I always ask people for help, but they either do it for me, to which I learn nothing, or I am explained this process that makes 0 sense to me. "For the seed value you have to import java.util.Random then use a substring to blah blah blah" I'm lost. And it is *not* a matter of me just simply not "getting" the language or not "having the mind of a programmer", I believe anyone can learn anything if they try. I just can't seem to put everything into it's perspective.

For example, when doing boolean practice problems, I looked at the solution and realized that "if" and "||" and "!" are all symbols and words that are used to solve those types of problems. How ***** am I supposed to know that? Is there something I'm missing? Is everything I need to know about booleans explained in it's description in the API index?

Is that how people learn java from scratch? Do they just have to read each individual method and class in the API index to see which one they have to use to solve the problem? It frustrates me immensely when it's revealed to me that some far-fetched process is used to solve a problem. Like there are so many different ways you can solve a java problem that I simply have no idea where to start. I don't know what the compiler will and won't take, it's almost totally *** random.

Am I just not good at Java? Plain and simple, I mean I really want to be good at it, I REALLY do. I want to be able to say, "Yeah, I know a thing or two about Java", and looking at it from outside the box, you can say to yourself, "Java doesn't seem that difficult, you just input different phrases and characters in certain ways to output a function", but it's so much more cryptic and confusing than that, to the inexperience Java programmer, ie me.

A lot of kids in my class seem to know what's going on. I'm sure there are a few to admit they don't, but I know a lot of computer whizzes that can display a blue rectangle and say, "Oh this is baby stuff." How did *THEY* get so good??? Does a magic genie come to you at night and grant you the ability to just "get" Java? I really do feel like I am missing some huge step here or something. I watch these tutorial videos and the instructor just throws around these values like it's nothing! "Ok so what you have to do here is simply use DJFHIAN function and then "+"; () [] String args data inDeXHereby which will give you &^^^& + 6664553 = 99928; then simply do String.substring.take.out.put.in.~.[]; and then you get result = 2, easy!"

And to top the *** cake all off with the *** icing, I have a University Study class for Computer Science students in which the professor tells us multiple times: "I'm gonna be honest with you all, more than half of you aren't going to be here for the spring semester. If I see 40 out of 60 of you here, I'll be elated. If I see 30 out of 60 here, I'll be happy. If I see 20 out of 60 here, it will be normal like other years."

That's really *** encouraging. Yep, the same 'easy' Java course leaves nearly 12% of the students left for the next semester, apparently. Dafuq? Maybe he has a point, but why why why in the WORLD would you tell a class of aspiring computer science majors that? I cannot be the only one that is seriously bothered by his saying this. That's like going to Haiti to donate food and telling each of the children you're donating to, "Okay little ones, I hate to be painfully honest with you, but by next week only 20 out of the 100 here will still be alive, there's just something about living that seems to be hard for you people!"

All in all, if I try and try and fail, and I sink with the ship, what are my other options for working with computers for a living? I mean I can always talk to my advisor, but I would like to hear a general opinion here. I want to be an I.T. technician, but I took Computer Science because I figured it'd be good to get the general knowledge of all thinks Computer based. Could I still be an I.T. without learning how to program? Is programming NECESSARY to land a computer job even if you don't want to go into something that would involve it in the work field?


Thanks for reading.



the secret is, let it flow....do not try to work hard....just read it and try it.....when i got my first nullpointerexception it takes 3 days to find out what i am actually doing wrong.
Just try it again and again and again.....if it starts getting boring than stop and take sometime, divert your mind and when you get refreshed comeback and try it again.....eat good food be relaxed and read books.....being a computer programmer doesn't mean that you need to always with your computer.......to make best program you need to use best logic and you could get best logic only if you know world better
 
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