Debugging built poor

An original article by author

image0When you're a noob, programming is a matter of writing perfect instructions for the computer to execute. Computer do what you say, and we get results.

In the real world, you first meticulously construct a program, have the logic in place, character perfect and run.

It fails spectacularly.

At which point the real programming starts: debugging.

The smart ones simply let their program fail. In fact they don't even bother writing to the end. They put the program logic down in pseudo-code (which is often simpler than you anticipate), produce the first tiny slice of real code, run and see how creative the errors his compiler can come up with.

Depending on your level of programming maturity, seeing errors can either be physically crippling or intellectually stimulating.

How computer thinks

Perhaps what we need is to visualize how our program thinks. As soon as a line is written, draw me something that looks like a thought.

And when I run animate the thought, let me examine it and see if it makes sense.

Perhaps that has to be baked into a programming language or maybe not, I don't know. But the value of instant result can't be underestimated.

Until then, I just installed PHP Debug Bar into my app, hoping to give my debug echos just that bit of class.