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Comment I don't think apprenticeships are it... (Score 2) 233

Part of the reason I don't think an apprenticeship model works for teaching programming is that by its nature it is a scholarly profession. I don't mean that in the ivory tower way, I mean that programming is largely research based and requires an active mind. You need meta-skills of the kind that allow you to assess, filter and process a lot of information, but be able to focus in on and find the particular bits that are relevant to you. Doing an university degree often teaches this skill indirectly and some people develop it themselves though natural dedication (autodidacts). I don't think an apprenticeship style of learning gives people the time or inclination to do this. More practical experience and mentoring is definitely valuable, but it shouldn't be the sum total of a programming education.

I also think that there is also a defensive thinking mindset required to properly produce robust software that requires a certain level of formal knowledge as well as practical experience. Degrees at the moment don't necessarily teach this, but you do see a lot of software written without this knowledge and quite often it becomes obvious that it's only going to work *some* of the time and quite a lot of this software comes from people with a weak formal education (but not all of it).

Comment Re:You Tell Me If You're Too Old; What Is Your Goa (Score 1) 418

No, my argument would be that those students made a creative contribution to the piece. It's not some sort of zero sum game, it doesn't make Michelangelo's contribution any less creative. Just because other parts of developing software take creativity, it doesn't mean that programming does not.

Comment Re:You Tell Me If You're Too Old; What Is Your Goa (Score 1) 418

Saying that about programming is like saying that painting is turning a concept into a picture, through obvious and necessary applications of the brush. The *goal* of programming is to turn requirements into code. Programming itself is the creative process of building that code; it's obviously creative, as my code to achieve a goal will be different to your code to achieve a goal (even if we start with the same design and architecture), because we think differently. Design and architecture are also creative, but they're done at a conceptual level. This isn't just my opinion, programming is legally recognized as a creative work, which is why source code has copyright.

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