Complete.Org: Mailing Lists: Archives: discussion: September 1999:
[aclug-L] Re:

[aclug-L] Re:

[Top] [All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index] [Thread Index]
To: aclug-L@xxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [aclug-L] Re:
From: Tom Hull <thull@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 21 Sep 1999 14:08:51 -0500
Reply-to: aclug-L@xxxxxxxxxxxx

There is much to be said for learning programming by reading code. My first
real experience in programming was when I picked up a program called "MINCE"
(i.e., Mince Is Not Complete Emacs), which came with approx. 50% source code,
plus a copy of the author's Masters Thesis and a detailed explanation of the
design. I not only read that code, I picked up its design methodology, adopted
many of its idioms, and continued to loot and plunder the code for many years.
My first real programming job then gave me access to the Unix V. 7 source code,
and I deepened my skills by reading that code (I remember S. R. Bourne as an
especially stylish and demented auteur), and built on that by porting various
utilities to run under CP/M.

While there are some books that have lots of useful tidbits of source code
(e.g., the "Graphics Gems" series and "Numerical Recipes"), about the only
major program whose source code is fully, intelligently, literately documented
in all its glory is Tex. But there are tons of more/less well-crafted source
code available, and access to this and understanding thereof have never been

One web site that has been organized to promote code re-use is:

It will lead you to others.

gLaNDix wrote:
> > Like I said, you learn by doing.  Asking for a subroutine that already
> > does everything you want leaves you nothing to do.  You're not really
> > going to learn it until you write it yourself.
> i learn by example...  start by simply modifying a program, and progressing
> untill i can write it completely on my own...  i took C++ and tried to learn
> by doing, but i learn much better by example...
> jesse

 * Tom Hull -- mailto:thull@xxxxxxxxxxx or thull@xxxxxxxxxx

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]