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Week of February 13th - 19th

What did you do this past week?

During this past week I directed my focus at getting myself set up for CS 371P. I began by trying to set up Docker Toolbox on my laptop so that I can program at my future partners apartment or in The Union but It ended up not being as simple as I expected. Docker Toolbox requires Intel VT-x to be enabled in your BIOS, but unfortunately my laptop has the BIOS locked down by a password my dad created four years ago, and he doesn't remember it. I opted instead to install it on my desktop and I'll instead plan all of my future coding sessions to be done in the lab. I also took this week to get myself a Github Education account and used it to set up my Travis CI account. Lastly I read the papers we were assigned and I'm about to start on chapters one and two of our textbook.

What's in your way?

So far I don't foresee anything being in my way during the beginning of this class, intellectually that is. The largest obstacle I have to contend with is making this blog look nicer than what a high school student can do. I plan on taking some time out of this upcoming week to do that. Lately I've been too busy with work and interviews to be able to sit down and design it.

What will you do next week?

Next week I'm sure we'll take time in class to expand on what we've been reading about in the papers and chapters we were assigned. Although in my previous classes I've learned about aspects of object oriented programming, I expect we are about to go much further in depth than I have before.

What's my experience of the class?

I like the class a lot so far. The content is really interesting. Although I would call myself an intermediate programmer, I love getting into the technicalities of why certain lines of code work the way they do and why others do not. It was really enlightening to find out that I've been writing for loops inefficiently for years. From now on I'll be writing them using ++i instead of i++.

What's my pick-of-the-week or tip-of-the-week?

My pick-of-the-week is this article about the Mars Pathfinder which explains a similar issue to that which was described in 'Little Bug, Big Bang.' We discussed it in CS 439 last semester and I think it highlights how even the best programmers around the world can make mistakes. This parable should teach us all to take time to test our code thoroughly and account for all possibilities.