[Melbourne-pm] Australia's garbage computer training offerings

Alec Clews alec.clews at gmail.com
Mon Dec 29 03:35:32 PST 2008

Education of IT professionals is one of my little hobby horses and I 
wrote some pithy words on what I thought were important topics for a 
novice developer to target in the first few months and years


It's only my personal opinion and I claim no special expertise beyond 
general IT technical background. Please feel free to critique

Alfie John wrote:
> Hi John,
> On Mon, Dec 29, 2008 at 3:35 PM, John Thornton 
> <jdthornton at ozemail.com.au <mailto:jdthornton at ozemail.com.au>> wrote:
>     Hello
>     I have scoured the earth looking for any Australian computer
>     trainers that can meet my needs. I am a maths graduate who's
>     starting programming as a beginner. I have messed about with
>     python, java and perl.
>     Cost is not a real issue. I am prepared to pay for a good course
>     taught by people who know their stuff. More important is to do a
>     course online that covers the specifics of programming: OOP,
>     applets etc. The language also isn't that important. I would even
>     be prepared to give Perl another go in spite of my expressed
>     distaste for it on this list! The learning style matters – those 5
>     day intensive things are no good for me. Rather, I prefer a course
>     that is spread out over time.
> Is taking a course that important to you? Why not just bunker down 
> with a good book or two. If you are just starting out programming, I 
> suggest not looking at Perl. Once again, Perl is not suited as an 
> introduction to programming. Perl is like a fine V.S.O.P. If it's your 
> first ever swig of alcohol, you're going to be put off very quickly. 
> Ease yourself into it with alcopops like Python and Pascal and don't 
> forget to stay away from the cheap casks like Java.
> If you are looking for specifics such as Applets, I think Java and 
> Flash are your only options. However you might want to try Python 
> since it was developed specifically to teach people how to program. 
> I've found "Learning Python" by Mark Lutz to be a good intro.
> Forget about the specifics for now e.g. OOP and Applets. Stick with 
> learning general programming. There is no point learning the 
> intricacies of multiplexed IO if you don't even know what a byte is 
> yet. It will take time but if you stick at it, you should start seeing 
> progress soon.
> Alfie
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