Learning the conceptual stuff

Because I’m a self-taught programmer, and still very much a beginner, there’s a lot of computer science theory that I’m totally unaware of. Yet I’m now beginning to see the value of classic theoretical solutions to common programming problems. When you can immediately identify a problem as being solvable with, say, a concept like a deque, or recursion, or whatever, you save an huge amount of time that would otherwise be spent groping around for a homemade (and probably inefficient) solution.

The classic solutions are really interesting too. Rather than spending my time just hacking together stuff that barely works, they have got me thinking about how a computer might best tackle a certain problem. Learning these approaches is definitely making me a better programmer, because it means I can come up with an efficient, realizable solution to a problem more quickly. Even better, problems which seemed unsolvable to me are suddenly accessible, because I’ve learned a way to approach them.

Anyhow, this post is in part inspired by this book, which I’m finding interesting.

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