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d_a_p_a_n03

All-knowing beings!?

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d_a_p_a_n03    122
Here''s a quick question for all you programmers in general - is it necessary or even wise to memorize all of the programming material that I learn? I know it is TONS of information, and from some people I have heard that one should just know ''how'' to do it and understand the material, not memorize it. Like is it normal that people look up the function calls or whatever if they are programming something new, or do they already know it off the top of their head? I know that''s a pretty random question, but I think it''s pretty important too! Thanx for your responses!

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Sneftel    1788
It''s pretty normal to look stuff up. If it''s a function you use all the time, eventually you''ll memorize it without meaning to. Until then, there''s nothing wrong with running to the docs.


How appropriate. You fight like a cow.

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Waverider    169
It's more important to know what you want to do with it, and know how to make it happen based on what you know programming-wise.

So no, it's not important to know everything.

Even the experienced programmers look things up all the time.

You will find yourself looking things up a lot in the beginning, then develop a pattern to it. You'll end up re-using code from previous projects, maybe even make them shared source files so you don't have to copy them over all the time.



[edited by - Waverider on March 17, 2003 6:17:42 PM]

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owl    376
quote:
Original post by d_a_p_a_n03
is it necessary or even wise to memorize all of the programming material that I learn?


Not necessary and definitelly not wise. If you know the basics and you know where to look up for the rest there is no need to remember everything. "To be wise" needs time, usually lots of time and lots of mistakes.

I think the most important thing is to train your brain for thinking properly.

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Bilgates    128
All-knowing beings? Where?
Anyway, the answer to your question is yes and no. It actually is better to know what you are doing than know how to do it, BUT if you if you KNOW the technical details that''s freaking even better. For example, do you know what BSP trees are as opposed to binary trees are? Do you know if O(n) is faster than O(nlogn)? You''re not going to be able to code it up if you don''t know what it''s supposed to do.

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Xai    1848
I''ll stick my neck in the noose and say that I am absolutely a C++ programming guru, and I still look something up nearly every single day ... and sometimes it''s just little semantic issues with the language or standard library, not even a third party library. The only things you should really strugle to know are the why''s behind some things ... like pointers, virtual functions, templates, etc ... and eventually their tradeoffs.

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S1CA    1418
I look stuff up all the time.

What I keep in my mind is a rough knowledge of WHAT is available to use and HOW it might help with various problems - I always use the docs to get the SPECIFIC DETAILS when I''m about to use something. i.e. I rarely remember the exact parameter details for functions, but I do have an overview in my mind about what all the functions do - the docs and Google fill in the gaps.

Having said that, the more you use certain functions over the years the more details you remember about them - for example if I need to use fread() I always know the parameters - once upon a time I had to look those parameters up.




--
Simon O''Connor
Creative Asylum Ltd
www.creative-asylum.com

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pan narrans    1284
quote:
Original post by S1CA
I always use the docs to get the SPECIFIC DETAILS when I''m about to use something...

It''s good to hear you say that. You guys always give the impression that you have absorbed the SDK docs


pan narrans | My Website | Study + Hard Work + Loud Profanity = Good Code

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Xai    1848
one of the reasons people get that impression is because we LOOK THE STUFF UP, when we make certain posts ... 90% of my posts are from memory, but I''m not going to post example code using iostream open modes, without double checking that the options I want really are ios::ate, etc.

And when I post responses about design patterns (especially creation patterns), I nearly always open the GoF book to the inside front cover, to double check the exact pattern name or summary ...

Because we honestly care about giving GOOD information to the people we help, we sometimes go to the actual trouble to double check ourselves.

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