Clash in Logic & Creativity
Starting work on A2 was quite interesting. Since a lot of people in class seemed to be at different levels of coding, the approach to writing the code has been very different. With all of us working on different issues some have tried to add sound, some have loaded the code with if and else statements. All the codes look different. Quite frankly I haven’t seen people in the same class approaching assignments in such different ways.
For me the coding part of A2 was easy. Coming from prior coding knowledge, the communicating statements to the user have always been very machine like and just serving the purpose of getting the message across. I remember writing switch case programs, where we would assign a number too every task and then print “enter your choice”. That was our idea of communication to the user. Of course here in Srishti we are supposed to be designers and make the user experience better so the statements cant be so machine like.
There was a very basic code that we used to write in school when we were learning how to work with strings. We would find out if a particular word was present in the sentence or not. I think I was happy to find a use for that in this code so that the bot can answer more efficiently. Python also has this useful function where it is able to extract the time and date of the machine that it is working on, that saved me a lot of time and work. The calendar function goes to the extent of also telling us what day of the week it is. These are actually functions that we used to write ourselves.
Next we had that class where we spoke about how coding should be taught. Since logic is one of the key aspects of a code, that needs to be developed simultaneously in order to be a good coder. Its actually happened numerous times that I have managed to write the solution to a problem and then was shown a clever and more concise way of getting the same output. I remember feeling so clever after I knew the new way of doing it. A good coder doesn’t just get the output but finds the best way of doing it. That is something we learnt back in school. We were encouraged to write good codes which can only come from being able to logically think. We were given just the input and output, no problem statement, had to find the connection and figure out what was happening. Computer class for me was a time to solve new puzzles and I think the best way to teach coding is through puzzles.
The second thing that is important is to discover the possibilities of a particular data type, statement or loop before moving on to the next one. Understanding how the utility of each is different from the other. Which one is better for what kind of operations and which one is lacking where. This is the key area where Srishti lacks. I remember being taught processing in foundation and all the facilitator wanted to do was teach the various loops and then say ‘explore’. Processing has a lot of in built functions. It can get very confusing and one cant possibly know its scope. ‘Explore’ though commonly used in design, has a very different application when it comes to Coding or Computer Science.
This class just makes me want to run to my earlier codes and computer books from school, I miss the logic gates and the binary, hexadecimal conversions. I know its been 2 years and I’ve lost touch with them. It takes me back to the road where I stood with two kinds of colleges to choose from, the admission letter for both in my hand. Maybe I chose the wrong college. Should have sharpened my logic before my creativity.