Saturday, March 26, 2011

It's been too long...

It's been long enough since I really dug into code - other than the bad-touch Java molestation I engage in to strip out guids and xml from corporate apis - that it's taking me some effort to relearn some of the simple things I used to take for granted when I thought like a programmer all the time.  For example...don't f*** around trying to make sense of the stupid PHP under Joomla MVC file structure when locating the style name in the css or any old php file, and then doing a text search, will work just as well (a Ransack search - Windows 7 searching gives me a headache - what the hell were they thinking that I have to "turn on" full text searching for PHP files - they're text!).  Remember that sometimes it's necessary to reverse and put a ! (not) in front of you assertion, or reverse the logic completely so that instead of putting a style on something, you're taking it away (which might be significantly easier than trying to get the cssText() addition correct).  And sometimes it's best just to walk away and rethink the whole problem until your brain ticks over and says "you have an id on all the other elements when they're active.  the issue is this element doesn't get the id initially due to some oversight in the way the software works.  just grab the stupid first child selector you've been playing with for hours and apply the id directly to it if it's missing."  Duh.  I know if you don't code, that might sound complicated, but it's so simple it screams, "you've been away too long."

I am glad I came home to take care of it rather than sitting at the Black Dog cafe in St. Paul all day.  I bumped into one of our R&D scientists there and he asked what language I was working on  - I'm glad he went off to the farmers' market instead of looking over my shoulder.

And don't get me started on how much simple C# I've forgotten now that I'm giving Eryn a few lessons.  I was embarrassed I was even thinking about doing a pop up instead of routing to the output textbox, and that was much less embarrassing than forgetting how to appropriately use TryParse() to check values before we routed them through our prototype calculator/concatenater.  But Eryn is happy.  She definitely understands how the concatenation of strings is different than the concatenation of ints and why we check first if we want to change the behavior based on the type of data we input. We're going to play around with expanding our calculator next, and then adding some logging to it so we can keep our results (and no, I don't completely remember how to write something to disk via .NET, but I'll find it).

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