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Author Topic: Schools in session; help carefully...  (Read 2461 times)
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Left Coast, CA (USA)
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The Arduino forum is the most opposite of that type of forum behaviour of any technical forum I've come across,
I would agree, and add that I think the Picaxe forum is the same in this regard.

_____
Rob

Yes, very friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful group. Although they do tend to po po the drastic advantages of open source hardware/software over the proprietary platform they are tied and dependent to. I did enjoy my time at the picaxe forum and it is a very useable hardware/software platform for beginners at very affordable prices, but when I saw all the advantages that the arduino platform offered I jumped ship quick. But then again I've always had the morals of an alley cat.  smiley-wink
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  I am have plenty of electrical experience but, I am still a novice programmer. I hope to help those that have shown thought and effort. Even if they are way off track as long as it looks like they have made an attempt, I don't mind helping.

 I can say that reading AVR Freaks forum posts, has made me shy to post anything there. They appear to insult people that appear to be putting in a solid effort. AVR Freaks seems to be way more technical but, I think you have to learn by yourself a little too much.

 This forum has inspired me many times, and has kept me interested because, I know there is hope when I start a project.
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On Homework
I have absolutely no problem helping people with the schoolwork/homework assignments.

As long as:
1. They pull their weight.
2. They cite and quote correctly and do not try to plagiarize.

It is the same system that the Universities use, having said that, these forums do indeed seem to be fairly free of abuse (you aught to see some of the linux kernel forums, where some students seem to think that because they are learning C++, that the Arm embedded developers can help them, its also got a lot worse since Google and that damned Android)

On abuse
Yep its not right but even in the last 30 odd years the world has become a lot more abusive at a personal level.
 If you cannot handle abuse, don't become a programmer, some of the oddest, narcissistic and egotistical people on the planet are programmers.(something to do with programming being considered 'arty'), so if a little abuse gets you crying in your beer, best not consider programming, plus it does not pay that well any more (HK for example pays 'programmers' less than cleaners)
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I have no problem helping people with the schoolwork/homework.
ditto.  Though I don't wish to do it FOR them, whereas I might do something FOR a struggling artist type who is up against a wall.  I want it to feel like they learned something from me, not just got their work done for them...
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plus it does not pay that well any more (HK for example pays 'programmers' less than cleaners)
Ain't that the truth, I was getting the same hourly contract rate in the 80s as you get these days, and the money was worth a heck of a lot more then as well.

______
Rob
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Rob Gray aka the GRAYnomad www.robgray.com

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Aren't programmers prone to controlling things since they create their own rules? That's what I thought.  smiley-twist
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some of the oddest, narcissistic and egotistical people on the planet are programmers.

Ya i have experienced that, it happen's , However it's because its a power akin to a power enjoyed by Sorcerer in the past that he used to empower the king by making Magical stuff but many fail to realize that with power comes the responsibility to act in a manner that is OK if not polite.

I think the help goes in Stages like:

1) Someone comes with an idea in the first place in the Project Guidance

then,

2) He is guided at stage 1 accordingly he brings desired items/ingredients to make it happen.

then,

3) He is allowed to work his mind with the ingredients bought at second stage.

then,

4) Real help comes here(or should come here!) as here he faces the main problem , if the candidate has made his way here at this 4th stage from the 1st one he is a original candidate and must be helped further, However the ones who drop - in straight at this stage their concern seems ambiguous as whether they want to learn or are just there to get things done for themselves by other's.


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I find the hardest questions to answer are from someone who has found two sketches by searching (so far so good). But they want help "combining" them. On the face of it, that should be easy, but combining two loops into one (especially if one has a delay in it, and worse if they both have) can involve major redesign. Or the two sketches might both use the same interrupt (or pin change interrupt).

It's hard to explain what sounds like it should be easy, can actually be quite hard.
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@ Mr. Nick , That is Advent and becomes a problem.
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The problem with a lot of students is that the "system" really doesn't reward effort, it tends to reward results. Students are not encouraged to do the work, it's only the results that matter. When I was in school (GRADUATED IN 1976) we were always admonished to "SHOW THE WORK" and always had the the idea reinforced that the process was important because the teachers always graded based on the work done.(Partial credit if you were doing the correct process)

Programming is a talent. Not all folks have that talent. I am not a whiz-bang programmer, but I have programmed Z80 in assembler, I learned TurboPascal many years ago (and can still use it when necesary), Programmed a number of different PLC's in industry, Program in Visual Basic 6 on PC's and have picked up both Arduino (C, C++) and converted a project from Arduino to AVRStudio4 Assembler.

Number one problem most of those "program this for me" type posts have is that they seem to have never been taught how to define a problem. The fancy term from computer classes was "SYSTEM ANALYSIS" which really means - define what you want to do, and then start to develop the steps to do it. Without a problem definition the project looks (and is ) impossible.

Another problem appears to be that many of these "DO the project for me" types have never played with the simple little example programs. Look over a few of the examples that come with Arduino. Change some values, change the sequence. Take blink and add 5 or 6 LEDS to the project. Figure out how to turn them on in sequence, make the Knight Rider sequence, make them function like the Mustang turn signals. You will gain experience with the various control structures and become familiar with how the language looks. And you will also have an idea where to look for an example of how to use the various commands instead of having to memorize all the language.
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The thing I just don't understand is this sort of question:

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If I add "x = x + 3;" to my program, what will happen?

I think, well why don't you try it and see!

I think some people are just conditioned to be frightened of technology, they are afraid they will break something if they do it wrongly, so they compensate by doing nothing at all, unless they get advice from a number of different sources. Of course, always seeking advice, for even trivial things, means you never learn how to do anything for yourself.
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But they want help "combining" them.
That is why I wrote this:-
http://www.thebox.myzen.co.uk/Tutorial/Merging_Code.html

However, I think it would be good if we could write a task swapping delay function. Unfortunately this requires access to the stack pointer and an alternative stack. I could do this in machine code but I don't seem to be able to do it in C. There must be a way but I am not programmer enough to sort it out.
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they are afraid they will break something if they do it wrongly

One day they will confirm themselves that breaking things is actually more of a knowledge provider and lesson teacher.
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breaking things is actually more of a knowledge provider and lesson teacher.
I think you are being too optimistic. Most students break things, don't know why and don't care.
Because it is only $20 to get a new one.
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Most students break things, don't know why and don't care.

That happens but when people are there for learning then they know they have to ask someone with experience but its a fact also that numerous places are there where a beginner can be lost and burns their system and not always those numerous places can be pointed by a expert.
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