|Perl: the Markov chain saw|
You youngin' don't know how good you have itby Macphisto (Hermit)
|on Apr 27, 2001 at 23:12 UTC||Need Help??|
I was having a conversation with kilinrax and we got onto the subject of how we wish online communities had sprung up earlier, or we wished we had discovered them earlier. The younger members of this community, like zdog, damian1301 and mt2k don't realize just what they've stumbled upon. I'm sure they recognize the value of the community here, but they probably don't recognize the stepping stone they've found.
It probably sounds like one of thoes "When I was your age..." bits, ( Hey! I'm only 21 ) but it is true. For those of you who either weren't able to get to online communities or those who were here before the internet really sprang up and got moving ( god bless al gore ), compare the rate of learning you experienced with the online community you joined versus how you were doing on your own. Granted, you might have been learning at a spectacular rate, but I'd be willing to bet that most, if not everyone, began learning at an accelerated rate.
I've been sticking my noses into computer books, and teaching myself languages since I was in the 6th grade. I started in BASIC and when I'd hear of something new I'd check it out. I was doing well. By the time I was in high-school, I was fixing the computer science teachers code,and helping out with the people who were maintaining the school networks. But, I can only imagine where I'd be if I had found a good online community. Yea, I had BBSes and USENET and all that, but it wasn't a constant community, and at times could get Troll laden, or run by egos. I can only wish I'd discovered alternative OSes like Linux, Fbsd, etc, when it first started up, but I'd never heard of it until college. I'd love to be at that level right now! I'm sure that had the online communities been around earlier, I would be far more advanced in my knowledge. I wish I'd been able to see the things that Chris was doing with seemingly random ideas and turning them into incredible project. Or to have tye or tilly to bounce ideas off of or have them take a look at my code and point me in a different, sometimes better direction.
When I started learning perl, I picked up Learning Perl by merlyn read it cover to cover and went searching for more to read. I lucked out on an online search and came across perlmonks.org. I've been here close to nine months, and i can't believe how fast I've learned. I've met a ton of great people ( as well as one surly drunken dwarf ), and gotten an education that my college never could privide.
In the conversation with kilinrax, I stated, "They don't realize what they've found," and cow piped up and said, "Or what they're doing to it." And she's right. There are those that are too immature to really handle how these places should be. I'm not saying it shouldn't be immature but we end up with people trolling and just trying to get rises out of other people, which in turn brings everyone down. But, on the other hand, some may come to the community a little rough and end up turned into a fine perl-monkey machine. I remember back when zdog would drive Ozymandias up the wall, and generally get on a lot of peoples bad sides. But look at what this kid does now! He's one of the more mature 15 year olds I know. A pontiff! 2907 xp! Putting out great japhs! I'm sure that online communities such as this contributed to his maturity. I hope I'm not wrong
If you think about it, every helpful thing you do here, helps someone out, makes them a better programmer which they hopefully pass on. What knowledge we propagate! We get to practically build them better, faster, smarter ... how cool is that?
Oh yea, and we're probably training our replacement ... :)
Anyone have any similar thoughts, or just think I'm full of crap?
Macphisto the I.T. Ninja
Everyone has their demons....