Re: Please Don’t Learn to Program

This morning Hacker News looked like this:
HN screeny

Jeff Atwood apparently thinks programming isn’t worth learning about, for most people. I think he’s probably right, in the sense that “robots aren’t worth learning about, for most people”. I can think of more examples. “Physics is not worth learning about, for most people”. But that’s rather obvious isn’t it? Why blog about it? Why blog about blogging about it? ;)

Atwood is bashing CodeYear, an initiative to get everyone to learn a little bit about programming. Here’s a retort written by CodeYear’s designer, Sacha Greif. Here’s another retort on Github.

I don’t understand why any of this stuff is worth arguing about. Why does Atwood care what people do with their free time? It seems there are a lot of assumptions being made about the motivations of these aspiring programmers. I see nothing wrong with CodeYear. I see nothing wrong with everyone knowing something about programming (hell, it’ll give me more to talk about at parties), just as I see nothing wrong with everyone knowing a little something about singing. Singing isn’t an essential skill for everybody’s daily life, but neither is math, really, though they both make life more interesting and are worth knowing about. These topics have the potential to enrich our lives, so why not learn about them?


2 Responses to “Re: Please Don’t Learn to Program”

  1. Just a note: I didn’t start CodeYear, I only did the design.

  2. Updated. Thanks Sacha.

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