You can learn to code

I work in the technology industry. I don’t write code. I deal with the code that everyone else writes. If you write bad code, trust me, I will find it. This brings me to my question of the day. Why do “they” want so many people to learn to code? Simple, so “they” can hide their bad code behind everyone else’s bad code.

There is a growing movement to teach every child in school how to code. The thinking is that it should be a mandatory class. This is extremely wrong on many levels. Not only should it be an elective in school, it should be encouraged to learn it on your own. In my experience, the best coders and programmers learn it all on their own.

What if we taught everyone how to be a law enforcement professional? Do you think we would have better police? No, just the opposite. There would be so many people out there that thought they could enforce the law that many of those laws would be enforced incorrectly. Same thing goes for doctors, lawyers and just about every other trained professional.

Being good at what you do has two main components; learning the trade and having a passion for it. Learning the trade is a good first step but if you do not have the passion for doing it and doing it well, you will not do it well. There are good coders and bad ones. The good ones love to do it. The bad ones might love it too but they won’t make much money at it and hopefully move on to something else.

I am one of those bad coders. I enjoyed it. I had a passion for it. I just could not do it as well as others. It was not for me. However, what it did do for me was teach me how to identify bad code. I know when something that I am using is not written worth a darn and that I should find some other application to use instead. I moved on to being a “power user” and later became an administrator.

That might make you question my logic behind not teaching coding to everyone. Let me clear that up. We should teach it to everyone that wants to learn it. The young person out there that wants to go into law enforcement does not need to learn how to code. They need to learn how to deal with people and the basics of law. The student that wants to become a chemist might find coding useful but ultimately they need to learn chemistry and math and physics.

I don’t want my future doctor knowing more about coding than anatomy. I don’t want my future dentist knowing more about coding than my teeth and gums. I want the future person that is going to create the operating system for my future phone to know more about coding than how to stop a rioting crowd from destroying property.

Why not start helping our young people find the talents that they have and have a passion for and help put them on a track to developing the skills that they will need to be good at what they want to do. We also need to invest in programs that can re-teach adults that discover that they have a new passion and want to learn something new. We should spend more money on education than entertainment. We should spend more money on education than building walls to keep people out of our country.