Re: Re[2]: couple of questions

Subject: Re: Re[2]: couple of questions
From: Kris Olberg <KJOlberg -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 12 Nov 1995 14:13:59 -0500

In a message dated 95-11-11 17:58:37 EST, karenk -at- NETCOM -dot- COM (Karen Kay)

>At 04:12 PM 11/11/95 -0500, Kris Olberg wrote:
>>In a message dated 95-11-11 12:35:19 EST, karenk -at- NETCOM -dot- COM (Karen Kay)
>>> The truth is that most writers *can* learn to program.
>>This sounds more than an opinion rather than the truth.

>It's an opinion based on taking a C course at the age of 44 without taking
>the prereqs and without having had math (which was college algebra) since I
>was 19. I won't say it was easy, but I survived the class, and the
>experience has been invaluable. I've only been a tech writer for less than
>two years--before that I was a linguist. So I haven't even had that much
>passive exposure to computers and to programming thought.

Sounds like you were a natural for learning programming. However, you've
projected your experience onto the rest of the technical writing community. I
have been working in publishing for almost 20 years. My experience is that
the majority of writers are not naturals at programming.

>I think believing that writers *can't* learn to program does them a gross

I never said writers can't learn programming. There are many who can and
will. At the same time, IMHO, I don't want those writers who can program
mislead others into thinking that they can also. It's not simple; it's
time-consuming, money-consuming, and it's just plain a skill that some people
will never be able to do. I also don't want to see programming become a
common job requirement.


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