What more can a college instructor ask for:
Thomas Gumz sent me a link to a blog entry entitled “Don’t Distract New Programmers with OOP“. Having just wrapped up one year of teaching “Intro to Programming and Problem Solving” to students at Clark College, I could not agree more. One of the core outcomes of my class is centered around functional decomposition – how to break down a problem into smaller, simpler parts.
When I get asked “What’s a good first programming language to teach my [son / daughter / other-person-with-no-programming-experience]?” my answer has been the same for the last 5+ years: Python.
I get this same question almost on a daily basis from so many people. Admittedly, before I started teaching the class I questioned the use of Python for new programmers. Well, guess what? It’s the perfect language and I have the results to prove it.
Did we cover object oriented programming in the class – yes, but not to the level that most would expect. We did just enough for students to wrap their heads around the concept. In fact, one student tried to use OOP for their final project and had a heck of a time. In fact this student was pushing for more OOP content and after the class concluded they admitted that OOP was much harder then they expected it to be.
The shift from procedural to OO brings with it a shift from thinking about problems and solutions to thinking about architecture. That’s easy to see just by comparing a procedural Python program with an object-oriented one. The latter is almost always longer, full of extra interface and indentation and annotations. The temptation is to start moving trivial bits of code into classes and adding all these little methods and anticipating methods that aren’t needed yet but might be someday.
Be sure and read the blog entry as I think that you will agree with avoiding OOP in an introductory programming class. If you are interested in learning more about pursuing a programming career drop me an email as I would love to help.
You can read what others are saying about this article on Yacker News.
While cleaning up my Mac today I found this oldie but goodie from 2002:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OpenNTF.org Releases OpenNTF Mail V1.0 for Lotus Notes 6
Vancouver, WA – October 15, 2002 – OpenNTF.org has announced OpenNTF Mail Version 1.0 for Lotus Notes 6. OpenNTF Mail is based on the standard Lotus Notes 6 mail template and adds many additional enhancements. These enhancements include:
- Quick Mail – A feature that allows the user to quickly compose a new memo to predefined recipients
- Quick Forward – A feature that allows the user to predefine recipients, and using drag and drop, quickly forward a message
- Reply and Forward indicators added to views
- Follow-Up – Ability to flag messages for Follow-Up and, using drag and drop, place them in a
- User Interface – Modified the Mail and To Do user interfaces to more closely resemble the Calendar color scheme
- Productivity Actions
- Added a Send/Receive action to the Mail outline
- Added a Find Memo action to the Mail outline
- Added the Outbox action to the Mail Outline
- Added a Resend Memo action to the Sent view
Other features include an Advanced tab in the Tools | Show Delivery Information dialog to show additional message header information; a feature that lets the user stop the sending of a Return Receipt on a message; added a Message Size indicator within a Memo; modified views and folders to contain date and time; modified the size column to show kilobytes instead of bytes; and added a key icon indicator to the Inbox to let you know that a message is encrypted.
After meeting on the OpenNTF.org web site, a small group of OpenNTF.org developers or “cooks”, from Norway, The Netherlands, Australia, The United States, France, Chile and Canada, came together to collectively add features to the Notes 6 mail template. The group used the OpenNTF Project Management Template (developed earlier this year) to manage feature requests, task management, bug tracking, documentation, discussions, news and other application development tasks. Bruce Elgort, an “Iron Chef” for the OpenNTF Mail template, says “Working with a team of developers whom had never even met, many living in different time zones, is simply amazing! We went from specification to a deliverable in two weeks. Using email, Notes replication, Sametime Instant Messaging and Web Conferencing we had all the tools we needed to work as a global team. Can you say collaborate?” Vince Shuurman (Oirschot, The Netherlands) who is also an “Iron Chef” on the project says “We were able to work separately and replicate the portions of the template we were responsible for. We simply refreshed our local mail templates and were then working with the latest build. We also used the new Domino Designer 6 “design-element-locking” feature to control edits to design elements.”
The OpenNTF Mail Template V1.0 will be available on the organization’s web site at http://www.OpenNTF.org within 7-10 days.
OpenNTF.org was formed in December 2001 by Bruce Elgort and Nathan Freeman. The mission of OpenNTF.org is to provide applications for Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino as open source which may be freely distributed, in order to increase the awareness of the power of Lotus Notes and Domino.
Do you remember this?
OpenNTF announced earlier this week that there were three new Directors elected to the OpenNTF Board. They are:
- Paul Withers
- Nathan Freeman
- Mark Leusink
I have the privilege of knowing and working with Paul, Nathan and Mark on many occasions. I’m confident that their knowledge, experience, creativity and vision will continue to infuse momentum into OpenNTF. Please join me in welcoming them to OpenNTF.
Please also be sure and thank Ulrich Krause and Julian Woodward for their time serving as Directors on the Board. Both Julian and Ulrich are both amazing individuals who I personally admire immensely.
Back in April I notified the OpenNTF Board that come this October I will be stepping down as Chairman of OpenNTF – The Open Source Community for IBM Collaboration Solutions. October is when my term as Chairman would normally end. You might have seen on the OpenNTF blog that nominations for eight board seats are now accepting nominations. Once the new board is elected a new Chairman will be elected. I will be working with the new Chairman to ensure a smooth transition.
I highly encourage all partners to get involved with OpenNTF in some way or another as it continues to be one of the pillars that supports the IBM Collaboration Solutions ecosystem.
OpenNTF has been a passion of mine since 2001 and after 12 years, it’s time for me to pursue some other things that I have wanted to do, but haven’t had the time.
- Where the idea for the workshop came from
- What was your intention about the workshop
- Why it is important
- Mick Moignard’s blog entry about the Ethical Hacking Workshop
- Who the intended audience was for
- How the event was received by the attendees
- What plans does Paul have to do it again
- Other things Paul is working on
- The upcoming Admincamp.de
- Teamstudio’s Dragonfly project
- Teamstudio will be sharing some Unplugged templates on OpenNTF
- The 3rd OpenNTF Development Contest
- Jess Strattons new Notes end-user video training series (also on EdBrill.com)
- and much more…
The show runs 41:13.
“With the donation of OpenOffice.org to the ASF, the Foundation, and especially the podling project, was given a daunting task: re-energize a community and transform OpenOffice from a codebase of unknown Intellectual Property heritage, to a vetted and Apache Licensed software suite,” said Jim Jagielski, ASF President and an Apache OpenOffice project mentor. “The release of Apache OpenOffice 3.4 shows just how successful the project has been: pulling in developers from over 21 corporate affiliations, while avoiding undue influence which is the death-knell of true open source communities; building a solid and stable codebase, with significant improvement and enhancements over other variants; and, of course, creating a healthy, vibrant and diverse user and developer community.”