[clug-progsig] Getting started
sgrover at open2space.com
Mon Oct 23 12:40:21 PDT 2006
I believe you have a misconception about how to code.
Most programming languages are nothing more than plain text. This text
is then processed (compiled) to create a file with instructions for the
computer in a format the computer can understand (i.e. binary files).
What this means is that the only tools you really need are a decent text
editor, and an appropriate compiler. Anything else, such as an
Integrated Development Environment is nothing more than an aid to the
programmer. Granted some of them are very useful, but the root skills
still only need a text editor and a compiler.
Now, if you are starting out, an IDE can be helpful in that they provide
debugging tools and help guide the user to getting their code running.
This should not be a substitute for knowing how to get your code running
manually, but one does have to start someplace.
(I started learning web development by hand, then moved to an IDE (like
Dreamweaver), and eventually understood it well enough that I now prefer
to develop in a plain text editor - Kate - and find that I can write
code just as fast as using the IDEs, with less crude getting put in
A decent and generic IDE is Eclipse with the C/C++ addons. It is Java
based, so works on Windows, Linux, and Macs even. (personal note - It
is one of the few java apps I don't mind running) But you'll still need
to find your own compiler for this - there's some decent freebies out there.
Installing C++ on windows means finding a compiler (Visual C++ Express
might be a good place to start - which is it's own IDE), but installing
it is no harder than installing Office. Having C++ installed on your
computer is not really cause for concern - if you take the usual
security precautions you would for any desktop. (granted I would not
usually install the compiler on a production Linux server - unless the
distro required it - like Gentoo).
Finally, the only real way to learn programming is to do it. Dive in
head first. Set yourself a task (maybe a simple contact management
system?) and then figure out how to make that happen. That process of
figuring it out (also known as troubleshooting) teaches you so much more
than a book ever will (but don't discount books altogether), and is an
When you get stuck, we'll try to help you out.
Mitchell Brown wrote:
> Hello all,
> Now, I know what you must be thinking: "Ohhhhh no! NOT MITCHELL!"
> I assure you all, I won't be flooding this list - as I understand it is
> only for programming!
> Now, as some of you may have heard, I'm starting a C++ intro course with
> my school.
> My teacher said I should goto the office, get a C++ book, and have the
> techie install
> C++ on my Windows laptop. Instinctively, I thought this was a bad idea ;)
> I'm looking for your guys' input on what a good IDE/program is to get
> with C++ on Ubuntu Dapper.
> Looking forward to abundant replies,
> pub 1024D/9091C422 02/05/2006 Mitchell Brown < mbgb14 at gmail.com
> <mailto:mbgb14 at gmail.com>>
> Primary key fingerprint: 812B 94BC EA0D 345A CC1C 2ED9 F7F6 5CCF
> 9091 C422
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