Asking the right question.

Almost 2/3 of the year is gone by already… who floored the gas pedal on 2010? Looking back at my New Year’s resolutions, I’ve failed miserably to accomplish any of them. One thing I wanted to do was to get more active in computing again. The actual doing of things, rather than just logging in to social networks and generally being a consumer. For 2 or 3 years now I’ve been meaning to learn how to program in Python, but as I look at my computer bookshelf again tonight it occurs to me that I’m pursuing the wrong question entirely. I don’t need a How, I need a What. If I had the answer to “What to program in Python?”, I’d figure the How out in a big, big hurry. Same goes for any other language. I’ve never had a problem learning How to make the computer do things, I just never have a firm grasp on What I want to make the computer do. Everything I want to do, I can do thanks to other people who’ve already gone through the trouble. So I guess the answer then is to find a program I like, dive into the bugs reported against it, and try to tackle one. But then I have to tackle multiple How’s…. How to program in a new language, how to debug a problem that I may or may not be able to duplicate myself, and how to read existing code somebody else has written, in a language I’m unfamiliar with. :-/

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