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SiliconMunky

'Why CS degrees suck rocks'

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i have a very funny and interesting story:
a company where i worked before, were such "only CS degree guys" - and only such guys !! Their nose was always on the ceiling, because of their arrogance...

the funny thing was, that these guys where able to solve each math equation in their had; telling me the whole day of programming physics and simulation-modells for technical processes; saying to me how, compute this and how compute that, which way there is to solve which problem in math... among this, speaking the whole day over DirectX API and it's usage in our simulation; thinking of pixel- and vertex-shaders, philosophize over extended rendering functions and such things.

the day when i really get shocked was if i found out that these "pseudo proffesional simulation developer and holy day shit talkers" are unable to program with Win32 and MFC API, have never heard of things like gimbal lock and doing their stuff without a CVS system, running on servers with no backup

as you can see, a CS degree makes you a complete professional computer developer !




DJSnow
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this post is manually created and therefore legally valid without a signature

[edited by - DJSnow on October 21, 2003 9:45:40 AM]

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This is BY FAR the most stupid topic I have ever seen on this board. Are the mods in the business of letting a flame war like this explode without intervening at ALL??

Think about this logically:

It doesn''t really matter what course you do or qualifications you have. If you are interested (and to some degree talented) in and at what you do, you will make it your business to learn what you need as you go along, and you will succeed.

Now, if we could have a little bit of goddamn maturity please?

RM.

------------------------------------------------------------
Yes. it''''s true, I DO wield the ugly stick. And I see I have beaten you with it before!

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quote:
Original post by Ritual Magic
This is BY FAR the most stupid topic I have ever seen on this board. Are the mods in the business of letting a flame war like this explode without intervening at ALL??

Think about this logically:

It doesn''t really matter what course you do or qualifications you have. If you are interested (and to some degree talented) in and at what you do, you will make it your business to learn what you need as you go along, and you will succeed.

Now, if we could have a little bit of goddamn maturity please?

RM.


Yes it is stupid. It''s the continuation of another stupid thread that was locked, and I assume this will be locked soon too.

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I wouldn''t say a CS degree sucks.. just that it has way less of a use than it used to.

I know here at work human resources switched from wanting people with CS degrees to people with engineering degrees.

Even with my own personal observations, the people with comp/software/etc engineering degrees can way outperform someone with a CS degree in development.

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By the time I''ll get my CS degree it''ll probably be back in fashion, out of fashion, and back again 5 times more, I don''t care.. I''m having fun.
People are so comfortable with generalizing. So what if your experience tells you CS degree is out of fashion? I promise that in 100 other places it is still considered to be worth something. And if your CS graduates walk with their nose in the ceiling, they don''t account for every other graduate.
That''s my opinion.. Just do your thing, love it, and stuff will work out.. Because there are endless opportunities around us, we just need to attract the ones that''ll fit us.

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Computer science at many uni''s have nothing to do(or at least used to) with software development, and mostly concern itself with theoretical stuff(algorithms, datastructures, complexity/computability, kompinatoric optimization, new stuff in functional programming, semantic/logic/language stuff(not my field, dont really know what they call it)).Many of the lectures at my uni, can hardly program, and have no clue about different API''s.

As for myself, i''ve only had 3.5 courses that required standard programming, the 3 being java courses, and the final one being a computer graphics course were we had a "speed" course in C++ for use with the exercises. Im definetly not planning on working as a programmer, when i finish studying.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
This thread has taught me much, at least that CS means Computer Science and that people with such degrees are stupid.

now where did i forget those pills...

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quote:
Computer science at many uni''s have nothing to do(or at least used to) with software development, and mostly concern itself with theoretical stuff(algorithms, datastructures, complexity/computability, kompinatoric optimization, new stuff in functional programming, semantic/logic/language stuff(not my field, dont really know what they call it)).Many of the lectures at my uni, can hardly program, and have no clue about different API''s.


At Ohio St. I had courses in C programming, general programming (Pascal at the time), assembly programming, graphics programming, software engineering, database modeling, OO modeling, as well as the theoretical stuff (AI, Networking, DB theory, adv graphics, etc.). Good mix of EE and math as well in the CS Engineering program at OSU.

If you just want to learn the latest languages/APIs, take a training course offered by a vendor or save yourself the money and buy a couple books.

But don''t make the mistake of equating "software development" with "writing code".


--
Dave Mikesell Software & Consulting

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I don''t mind the work I''m doing at the moment, most of it isn''t programming at all, which is a good thing, or I''d be bored to tears in lectures. Java is on the cards for the programming seminars, but I don''t turn up to them, or I''d go insane, the only one I turned up to was one on assigning variables and using a temp var to swap them, I nearly got mobbed when I said you don''t *need* a temp var, it was like "ARGH!! HE DOESN''T SPEAK THE WORD OF THE ALMIGHTY EXPENSIVE JAVA BOOK!!"..ffs.. So from now on I don''t speak a word, and let the big headed hand-wavers "pick me! pick me!! i know!! i know!!" do all the talking.
We do a cross-over project though, where teams of people do a stage for a specific project, then hand that document over to the other team(in a circular fashion), so you end up using other peoples designs and documentation. Then at the end of it you have to make substantial modifications to somebody elses code, which all in all doesn''t sound like a bad idea.

Final Word: I don''t expect the degree to help me as much as it should do in getting a job, I''m just here to get drunk every night.

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Hahahahahaha.

quote:

the funny thing was, that these guys where able to solve each math equation in their had; telling me the whole day of programming physics and simulation-modells for technical processes; saying to me how, compute this and how compute that, which way there is to solve which problem in math... among this, speaking the whole day over DirectX API and it''s usage in our simulation; thinking of pixel- and vertex-shaders, philosophize over extended rendering functions and such things.

the day when i really get shocked was if i found out that these "pseudo proffesional simulation developer and holy day shit talkers" are unable to program with Win32 and MFC API, have never heard of things like gimbal lock and doing their stuff without a CVS system, running on servers with no backup



Next to the theoretical background this "pseduo professional simulation developer and holy day shit talker" has, learning Win32 and MFC (god, why?) is so incredibly trivial it makes my head hurt.

Not that he would want to. He can design the algorithms and leave the implementation to people like you. Then, when whatever API or SDK or even language you''re working on dissapears into obscurity you''ll just be replaced.



[My site|SGI STL|Bjarne FAQ|C++ FAQ Lite|MSDN|Jargon]
Ripped off from various people

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quote:
Original post by DJSnow
the day when i really get shocked was if i found out that these "pseudo proffesional simulation developer and holy day shit talkers" are unable to program with Win32 and MFC API, have never heard of things like gimbal lock and doing their stuff without a CVS system, running on servers with no backup

as you can see, a CS degree makes you a complete professional computer developer !




DJSnow
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this post is manually created and therefore legally valid without a signature

[edited by - DJSnow on October 21, 2003 9:45:40 AM]



That can be learned in a day or two.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
What''s the point of theory without implementation. Businesses can''t sell a theory to their clients, they need a product. And where are the next big ideas and revolutions going to come from if no one is spending their time thinking about problems and solving them with pure theory? Yes, we both need each other, the designers and the implementers. Now, let''s all get over ourselves and go back to playing nice together and making cool stuff happen!

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quote:
Original post by Anonymous Poster
What''s the point of theory without implementation. Businesses can''t sell a theory to their clients


Yeah they can. Haven''t heard of patents?

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I think one thing many programmers are forgetting. You''re a commodity. Easily replacable cogs. Besides, which you barely have 5 years. The only ones with a future are the artists, those who create art. By art I don''t mean pictures, I mean put design and spec out, create. The theory monkeies are blessed because they have the tools to EASILY assimilate/learn new stuff, if they need to. The programmers/implementors will find some guy in India, China, Romania, Ireland... replacing their over paid asses right quick. BTW, I used to be a HUGE supporter of the applied "camp".

I''ve come to realise that application needs to take a back seat to theory and should be there only to reinforce the theory but it should be understood that it''s a secondary -- a simple teaching tool.

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quote:
Original post by eedok
lol I''m in computer science 101 and I can already program with the win32 API..


lol I didn''t even go to colledge and I can already program with the win32 API.. In C/C++ or straight asm

CS dgrees don''t suck rocks if the company you want to work for requires a degree, or CS degree.



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I''m in Computer Science right now. In my opinion, half of it matters, and half of it is bullshit. Right now I''m working on a space strategy game, and I''ve already learned a lot more about game programming through this and other websites than I have yet learned here at school. Also, probably unlike many other CS guys, I''m not so much into theory than I am into taking what I learn and using it to make something that I think is interesting, entertaining, and something that other people will want to buy. One of my professors will sometimes say "we, as computer scientists..." which I find a bunch of bull. Perhaps I shouldn''t be in CS, then. But I honestly don''t see a better alternative (Software Engineering is practically the same as CS here). In any case, I personally see myself taking what I learn and applying it to solve the problems that I need to solve (as in, how do I make this game do what I want it to do?). I think that takes more "Yankee ingenuity" than abstract computer science courses.

By the way, here at my school, the actual programming courses have gone like this: C programming course fall semester of freshman year, 2 semesters of Java programming (along with instruction in data structures and algorithms), and this semester I''ve been learning C++ (which I pretty much know anyway), Scheme, and Prolog (the last two of which are part of my "Principles of Programming Languages" class :| ). In my opinion, the best class I have so far this semester is Software Design and Modeling. I think what it''s teaching me is useful, since I can definitely see myself applying good software design principles to game programming

- Rob

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quote:
Original post by SiliconMunky
Because MagMai the moderator wanted this thread, here we go....


I sarcasticly said we should make perma-threads for 'Why CS degrees suck rocks' and 'C++ vs Java' since people endless bring both up, and I see you have decided to carry the torch down another thread...

quote:
fodd3r
I think one thing many programmers are forgetting. You're a commodity. Easily replacable cogs.


Do you know how 'untrue' that is? Many engineers become rutted, every year they spend on a job makes them more & more valuable to that organization. They will have in-depth knowledge and experience that no-one else on Earth will. After about ten years, it becomes very hard to change jobs; they make so much money with thier current employeer, no one else is willing to pay them that - you're not that valuable to someone else because you're not proven, and not "up to speed" to use a cliche.

To use a pinnacle case, consider John Carmack applying for a software job, outside of the game's industry, and asking for $400k. He actually was lamenting about this in one of his interviews. He can't do whatever he wants anymore, like he did when they made Wolfenstein (the first one). There's too much money tied-up, too much risk, to screw around.

[edited by - Magmai Kai Holmlor on October 23, 2003 2:32:28 AM]

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quote:
I think one thing many programmers are forgetting. You're a commodity. Easily replacable cogs.


Good programmers are scarce. If you're good, you'll always have work. What do you mean by "programmer"? Here are a couple good links that talk about the stigma of being "Justa Programmer" (and now misguided that notion is):

C/C++ User's Journal March 2002 Editorial
Extreme Programming Wiki Page

--
Dave Mikesell Software & Consulting

[edited by - dmikesell on October 23, 2003 8:16:05 AM]

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@raging_jakl:
>>That can be learned in a day or two.
yes, of course - but don''t tell me that you won''t expect the knowledge about this from a person like this one ? don''t you ?


@wild_pointer
>>learning Win32 and MFC (god, why?) is so incredibly trivial it
>>makes my head hurt.
really ? even if your application, and some parts of your tools, rely on this techniques ?? *BIGLAUGHING*
think for yourself: it doesn''t matter what type of programming you do - one day the situation will come where you have to write "other" code than your 3D-mathematic code (for initializing a window, e.g.) - what then ? And, again: if you would hear someone talking the hole day of himself and the great possibilities of the DirectX SDK and his greath math knowledge, YOU WOULD EXPECT (too) that this person is able to do "easier" programming jobs, don''t you ?


@Zanthos:
>>Final Word: I don''t expect the degree to help me as much as it
>>should do in getting a job, I''m just here to get drunk every
>>night.
yes, that''s the reason why i would go back to school and then university, too, next year programming, above all good-programming, is a thing of ton''s of practices and experiences; it couldn''t be learned in 2 month - so, only useful thing to do while attending university is making party, having fun with girls and drinking alcohol


@dmikesell
>>But don''t make the mistake of equating "software development"
>>with "writing code".
1. this line should read "dont make the mistake of equating ''computer science degree'' with ''software development''".
2. most people are doing this; above all the "knowing nothing ones". In germany we have a funny/good word for naming this degree - the cool thing is, that if you take a look in an language-dictionary, you will see that this word, and it''s content, has nothing to do with computers or software development - but, as ever: most people don''t know this (perhaps they have never looked in a dictionary, or they haven''t been at school when this was told *g*)



DJSnow
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quote:
@dmikesell
>>But don''t make the mistake of equating "software development"
>>with "writing code".
1. this line should read "dont make the mistake of equating ''computer science degree'' with ''software development''".


No, because that''s not what I meant. The poster I was responding to seemed to be looking down on his professors because they couldn''t sling code. There''s a whole lot more to software development than coding. That was my point.

Did I take courses required for my degree that I have had little use for in my career? Of course, but that doesn''t mean you throw the baby out with the bathwater. You don''t get a CS degree (at least not the kind I got) to learn language and API syntax. You learn how to solve software problems and the theory behind a lot of the problem solving techiques that we use. To this day (some 12 years later) there are ideas/themes/theories that were pounded into my head about software engineering in college that I still call upon.

If you''re just in college to get drunk and party, I feel sorry not only for you, but also for the person who really wants to be in that classroom seat.



--
Dave Mikesell Software & Consulting

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