Save the Hobbyist Programmer

Miners know they have a significant problem when the canary they keep with them stops singing. Hobbyist/part-time programmers are our industry’s version of the canary, and they have stopped singing. People who program four to eight hours a week are being cut out of the picture because they can’t increase their skills as fast as technology changes. That’s a danger signal for the rest of us. We need to address…

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Circle Games and Cyberpunk

Circle Games and CyberpunkJerz’s Literacy Weblog) While I figured cyberpunk wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea, I hoped that the likeable protagonist Nell and the fantasy sequences she encounters in her Primer would get students who don’t much care for science fiction to enjoy Stephenson’s The Diamond Age. In order to discuss some of the key concepts in the novel, I had to make sure that my “Intro to Literary…

Downtown Vegas Sees Big Picture

To viewers, the hourly show appears as one continuous, somewhat overwhelming four-block-long image — and it’s programmed that way by teams of animators who spend as much as four months to create the shows. But what viewers won’t be able to see is that the image — and the “screen” — is broken down into eight sections, each managed by a separate computer responsible for displaying its portion of the…

Uni Chair

A lot of designers think that a work is part of a person, that it has come from some mysterious place inside. How it will sell depends on who we are as individuals. But an interesting thing for me is that I think we ourselves change from time to time. I may be Tung Chiang, but I can also be somebody else in order to see things differently.–Tung Chiang –Uni…