Where is that missing semicolon…

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More Snow and Working with Git

Lack of sleep and from plowing means unsaved blog posts.  But the show must go on…

Looking through countless introductory tickets for something that is both challenging and interesting without being over the top is not easy, but I found a couple of good ones.  All the while the couple of git exercises got me a little bit more up and running and familiar with GitHub.  I’ve also taken the time to “properly” get my main rig worked up for a good developing environment to code with in the upcoming weeks. 

With tickets selected and git now being more familiar, coding, debugging and documenting is going to rev up.  The “introductory” videos for git were nice, but I feel like it was over simplified.  I’m going to inevitably have to make a table of git commands and tape it to my desk so I don’t forget them.  But other than that, solid introduction and basics of what Git can do. 

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Week Two, more ways to help than just programming

So, it appears that I’ve been under the false assumption that my only way to contribute to a large project, regardless of corporate or open source, was through straight programming.  How fortunate I am that I’ve been wrong.

I’ve never considered myself an ‘ace programmer’ by any means, and I have more than one not so fond memories of staring at pages of code wondering why it won’t work.  This has lead to a more favored past time of coding, debugging.  Generating code for me is often slow, and tedious.  While the pseudo-code can flow easily, actual implementation takes a bit more work and requires even more headaches.  But, once I get the general code going, debugging it for errors and making it run a bit more efficient seems to be something I can do, rather easily; especially when its belongs to someone else.  Perhaps that is what I should be setting my sights on, improving how well I can debug code, as it appears to be just another valuable facet of coding.

In a somewhat related event, the class I am working with on the OpenMRS project has been introduce to yet another invaluable tool, IRC chat.  Nothing can help you become familiar with a new program then spending a couple hours straight working with it and communicating with your peers.  Reminds me a little bit of MSN messenger or AOL back in my youth, but now with actual purpose.

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First Week, CS-401

Well then, the OpenMRS is certainly a very large and interesting project to say the least.  But with such a large and ongoing effort to provide an Open Source EMR database one is immediately struck with the question.  “What could (what I consider) a novice programmer possibly contribute to such a large ongoing effort?”  The upcoming few months will certainly answer that question without doubt.  As for the time being, I am very excited to be working (soon) be working and contributing to the OpenMRS community.

My expectations of this course are already set quite high, with the hopes of simply becoming a much more savvy programmer.  My only regeret is not being introduced to such sources as GitHub and exposure to other open source projects sooner, but that cannot be helped at this point in time. On that topic, over the Eric S. Raymond’s article The Cathedral and the Bazaar have also opened me up to the raw potential  — and how powerful open source communities can be.  Maybe my current inexperience will still be of good use to the OpenMRS project after all.