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use strict and warnings for newbes

by John M. Dlugosz (Monsignor)
on Aug 24, 2001 at 03:05 UTC ( [id://107535]=monkdiscuss: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

How about saying "use strict and warnings" and point to the recient informative node for newbes, right when an Anonomous goes to post a question?

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Re: use strict and warnings for newbes
by All0uette (Acolyte) on Aug 29, 2001 at 17:10 UTC
    As a recent newbie I don't think this warning needs to be posted everytime. What would be useful is forcing new accounts through a series of pages/tutorials related to the site. E.g. Chatterbox FAQ's ++ rather than them just being available. This would have helped me. Perhaps the exalted ones (Saints) could flag certain items as 'essential' prior to use of the site, although it may be more relevant for newer monks such as myself to point the way as we have more recent experience of the process. Just a few thoughts.... All0uette.
      Good proposal.
      Having 'obstacle course' to help newbies reach for FAQ before posting is returning again. There was discussion about it at Use strict warnings and diagnostics or die. And sure enough, I (pmas) proposed the 'obstacle course' ;-)

      I still believe 'obstacle course' will help our Monastery in multiple ways:

      1. Guide newbies through FAQ, and resources with answer already available, but maybe not too easy (for newbies) to find.
      2. By providing links to FAQ, we lower pressure on newbies (I know I hate to ask stupid questions).
      3. If newbie is not afraid that question being asked is stupid and was answered hundreds of times, maybe s/he will be less reluctant to register - which is Good Thing.
      4. Compared with other on-line communities, PerlMonks has one very special feature - Experience Points, which allows us to assume something about perl skills of the person asking question. Why not to use this info for PerlMonks advantage? To be even more useful tool for all participants? Why not to build on our comparative advantage?
      5. Because 'obstacle course' will guide newbie through FAQ, quality of posts will increase, less noise. I do not know about you, but I do not enjoy answering simple trivial questions by mentioning links where topic was kicked to death. My time is limited and I enjoy reading about tricky questions (and solutions). Please understand me, I was nebie recently (and I am not an expert yet - far from that), but still... I believe that self-help is the way. Here is what I found (and liked) on NewsGroups:

        "Get real! This is a discussion group, not a helpdesk. You post something, we discuss its implications. If the discussion happens to answer a question you've asked, that's incidental." -- nobull in comp.lang.perl.misc
        I know we in PM <bold>do care</bold> about answering the question (so we are tempted to be helpdesk), but we are not paid to do it, right?
      6. Many of you can add more reasons here...
      Solution can be very simple (and I hope relatively easy to implement): for a monk with less than (put your favorite number here), on post preview page, or existing standard posting page Seekers of Perl Wisdom, just above edit window allowing to post new question, we can display couple of <bold>links</bold> to FAQ. Not complete FAQ - it should be not excercise in scrolling down. If newbie is asked to use strict, and does not care to click on the link and read why s/he should Use strict warnings and diagnostics or die, well - at least we know which kind of person is asking questions - and how detailed answers needs to be... ;-)

      To make errors is human. But to make million errors per second, you need a computer.

        Yes, well such an obstacle course may protect the exxalted ones from having to (once again) answer the (sigh) same questions, but perhaps that's not the goal here. Present too high a threshold and you'll likely prevent people from participating.

        This is not the Perl Monks I've come to know and respect. Perhaps it's just me, but I've come to think of PM as inclusionary and (okay, okay, I know what this sounds like) nurturing, rather than elistist and exclusionary.

        Granted, the XP system is weighted toward those who are more active; but with limited exceptions, these include exactly the people who should be given respect and more responsibility herein.

        Just my $0.02 ...


        Just call me the Anti-Gates ...
Re: use strict and warnings for newbes
by bladx (Chaplain) on Aug 24, 2001 at 08:22 UTC
    While this may be a good idea, John_M._Dlugosz, it may get tiresome to each particular anonymous monk that posts each and every time they post.

    I am not trying to sound rude, but what if that person (he or she,) is actually very skilled in the language, and already know to use strict, and -w in their snippets or code? It might just make them consider just a place where they think new people don't know anything about the language.

    I think it's just fine to leave it the way it is, since newbies generally learn quite quickly that they should use strict, and -w... at least I did, and I know of many others :-).

    That's just my quarter for this subject ;-).

    Andy Summers
      Well...most new people don't now much about anything that they are new to.

      I think that it is just a kind reminder to first stop and consider that you are asking other people's help and assistance with nothing to give them in return. So, you might as well help them out as much as you can by first checking your code and making sure that there are no simple variable misspelling or a dinky mistake.

      All in all, it sounds like a good idea to me. A slight reminder here and there will never hurt anyone.

      $_.=($=+(6<<1));print(chr(my$a=$_));$^H=$_+$_;$_=$^H; print chr($_-39); # Easy but its ok.
      To be honest I dont buy this skilled person argument. I do a lot of perl. Occassionally I leave it out of my code and then get bitten. Every time. When I have strange results its the first thing I check.

      I personally would have no problem if the input boxes came preloaded with the code block AND a nice

      use warnings; use strict;

      Honestly I think I agree with the perldocs that it is a bug that perl does not have these set by default, as you can always negate them as in the infamous

      no strict 'refs';

      Even the old hands from what Ive seen in the modules work under strict and warnings, and probably wouldnt mind much at all if they were present.

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