Academic exercises (was: Re: [lug] File modification)

Rob Peacock rob at
Thu Mar 14 16:41:54 MST 2002

Unfortunately, school just doesn't really seem to promote developing
quality software.  I remember being quite disappointed in my first
programming class (AP Pascal).  The instructor asked at one point for ideas
for our final project.  I suggested that throughout the semester we develop
components, and the final would be assembling them into a text editor.
That suggestion was immediately discarded.  Which was unfortunate...

Some quotes from people in my life concerning this situation:

People who can, do;
People who can't, teach.
--My dad
(There are a few exceptions to this rule, but for the most part, he was
dead on.)

What I needed in the real world, 
CU-Denver didn't teach me.
What they taught me, I can't use.
--My college roommate

-Personal experience-
When I was in O-Chem, the instructor spent 3 weeks explaining one type of
NMR, and 1 day teaching us about another major type. When asked which
process was used most frequently in the workplace, the prof said the
process that she covered in one day. When asked why it was more popular,
she said it was because that process was more accurate, faster, and cheaper.

My question... Why did you waste my time telling me about something that is
very rarely used when you should have been concentrating on what gets used
in the real world.

-Another experience-
When I was taking calculus, I was told that I had to provide computer
print-outs of the math problem. When I asked the prof how to get the same
results by hand, he told me that he wanted us to use the computers and not
learn to do it by hand. 

He said that employers pay for results and that you had better have a
computer to do your work. I asked him a very simple question: what happens
if my PC crashes and I have to have the results to my boss the next
morning, what am I gonna do? My employer is paying for results...

When I told him that I had a Macintosh and that the particular software
package wasn't available for the MacOS, he told me to buy a PC.

As far as the school not being interested in developing quality software, I
think that is probably true-just look at the bloaware coming from Redmond.



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