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Programming

Entry 83, on 2004-11-09 at 22:32:41 (Rating 1, Computers)

I bet you thought I was going to launch into an extensive tirade about Bush's latest little battle in Falluja, didn't you? Well I'm sick of Bush and I don't want to talk about him any more, right now. I heard Rumsfeld being interviewed today and it was sickening. I wonder if he appreciates the irony in the things he is saying? Anyway, enough of that.

I want to be more positive and talk about computer programming instead. I have been doing some database programming work recently which has been really fun. I have to spend too much time at work doing general consulting which isn't exactly challenging and doesn't allow for much creativity. Creating computer programs is an unusual combination of art and science. Programming definitely requires technical, logical and mathematical skills; but it also is an art form, especially in the interface design, graphics, and layouts required.

I know very few users ever appreciate the artistry involved in writing a good program. The strange thing about programs is that often the simpler and more consistent they look, the more technical brilliance is happening behind the scenes. For example, I go to a lot of trouble to make similar sections of my programs work the same way, even if the underlying structure is different. A user will look at it and not even notice anything unusual, which is just about the best thing to aim for. If the user gets their work done while barely noticing the program is there, you have really achieved something.

On the other hand, many programs just give you a whole lot of tools which are not logically integrated with each other. The user just has to get used to how they work and make them work the best way they can. Dare I mention it, but Microsoft's crappy software generally falls into this category.

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