Monday, March 21, 2016

Motto for Python newbies

By Vasudev Ram

Also see:

10,000 Hours of Practice

Outliers - Malcolm Gladwell book

The Python Interview

- Vasudev Ram - Online Python training and programming

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Senthil Kumaran said...

I wish this were true. Normally, I see folks becoming Python programmers after 100 hours of practice. It isn't the case in other languages, which ceremonies to go through. Good completed projects are the best measures for learning IMO.

Vasudev Ram said...

>It isn't the case in other languages

I would say it is the case in some other languages too, at least dynamic ones. May be some static ones like C and C++ as well. But I don't think it is so much because of the languages themselves. You can be a good or bad programmer in any language. More to do with the market, hype, etc., IMO.

>Good completed projects are the best measures for learning IMO.

One of the best, agreed. I still think an in-depth technical interview can show a lot about a candidate [1]. Been on both sides of that equation a good amount.

[1] Including asking them to explain their thought process and approach to a problem, small programming assignments on the spot (though not the silly kind that require you to have memorized a lot of stuff that you can look up [2]), etc.

[2] And by look up I don't mean on Stack Overflow, aka Stack Overflow programmers :) I mean looking up things like less commonly used API's signatures, etc. Fundamentals still have to be in place.

Just saw this HN thread which is sort of related:

We only hire the trendiest (

His background is impressive, and if stuff like what he describes can happen to him, what about others ...

Vasudev Ram said...

>But I don't think it is so much because of the languages themselves.

I mentioned Python in the post because it is a key area I consult and conduct training on.

But the overall point could equally well apply to many other languages or even non-tech skills, as the Gladwell links in my post say.

In fact the idea for the post was triggered by discussions with a client about the 10,000 hours thing - the need for sustained learning and practice over a long time, not crash courses or get-rich-quick schemes that a lot of so-called code institutes and bootcamps are flogging and thereby cashing in on students' ignorance these days.