[ExI] Rapid prototyping

Harvey Newstrom mail at harveynewstrom.com
Fri Feb 22 13:58:54 UTC 2008

On Friday 22 February 2008 00:58, Bryan Bishop wrote:
> So it seems I have lost my edge when it comes to programming. Not
> entirely. A few years ago I was able to effortlessly hack out hundreds
> of lines of code in a few minutes, double check the specs, compile, and
> continue on to the next task, but recently I was talking over some
> specs with a friend and, without my knowledge, he went off to implement
> a mockup, as did I, and he did in 20 minutes what took me three times
> as long. It seems I have been away from the compiler for too long. Any
> suggestions for improving my game?

Practice, practice, practice!  Most software is made up of snippets of code 
that are very familiar.  A parsing routine, saving data and recalling it, 
calculating formulae, getting input to and from the user, sanity checks, 
interpretting data, translating data, etc.  Doing these things over and over 
makes you much quicker in doing it the next time.  You develop a set of 
tricks to use.  You remember what you did last time, and what the gotchas 
were.  You remember debugging a similar problem before and what the answer 
turned out to be.  You will always be slower when you've been away from any 
task for too long.  If you get back into it, you will get back into the swing 
of things and be back up to speed in no time.

Harvey Newstrom <www.harveynewstrom.com>

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