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Thread: Yikes,I am heading to the next level

  1. #41
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    Well, historically there's a connection between old large machines (eg, power tools, factories, etc.) and the evolution to computers.

    As for the moment, I think it's at least party due to men (probably more relevantly boys) being interested in things like Sci-fi, etc. But that also does seem to be changing-- looking at the fan base for various new Sci-fi movies/tv shows. Overall, I wonder if the nerdiness of women is catching up to the nerdiness of men... haha.

    (On the other end of things, it is the case that at least for a while, secretaries were the only ones who could type well-- so there are still a few 50-70 year old men out there who can't type on a computer.)

    Personally I think the youth culture being dominated by cell phones, instant messaging, etc., is changing things significantly. But there's still definitely a male factor in the nerdiness of wanting to become a programmer. I wonder if that's something biological (on average of course) or just a historical effect.


    (As a sidenote, your story made me think of "The IT Crowd". Do you know the show? It's great. But perhaps they do need a woman on the IT side of things in the show who actually knows what she's doing...)



    Cross-post edit:
    Quote Originally Posted by KB
    How many female hard core gamers are there when compared with males... same thing.
    That's interesting. And it seems true. But there's also evidence to the contrary-- a good friend of mine in high school met his girlfriend (now wife) playing WoW or something like that online. And I've heard that kind of story enough to think it's not all that rare-- there are female gamers out there. I wonder how many...
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  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by djr33 View Post
    Personally I think the youth culture being dominated by cell phones, instant messaging, etc., is changing things significantly.
    Ahh, now I think I may disagree there. The fact that younger people these days (even being nicknamed the thumb generation, for texting) use all the latest technology more often, doesn't mean that they will want to become software engineers or computer scientists. I suppose it's the idea that you can use a tool without caring how it was made. For example, a lot of people use cutlery to eat, but how many of those people think about, or if they do, really care how these things are made? So if you get a whole bunch of people using an instant messaging service, very few of them are going to look up how it was made, furthermore, caring enough to really get embroiled into the world of programming. Back to the cutlery, most people don't use cutlery and then say, "I want to make cutlery for a living", as is with technology. Most teens won't say, "gee, I really like Facebook, so I'm going to learn php", however much they may use it. Most just see it as a tool. Another point is, that where many professions may be glorified via the media, for example, people may watch csi or bones, and then think about becoming crime scene investigators or forensic anthropologists, but people dont do that with programming. If anything, the media has associated programming with "hacking", "nerdiness" (nerd being a term coined by Dr. Seuss (just a bit of trivia)), or fraud. Even with fraud and hacking in movies, you watch oceans 11 and you want to be George Clooney, not Eddie Jemison. Anyway, that's my $0.02 on the matter.
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program." - Linus Torvalds
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    I didn't say all of them are going to become programmers. But you need to start by having familiarity with computers and working your way up to productive programming-- being able to touch type (which I'd say is fairly normal for all kinds now) is going to help, along with just knowing how to use a computer in general. Due to that, girls and boys will both be exposed, which may make it so that the girls start to catch up in terms of interest.

    I don't really get your food metaphor. But sure, let's go with it-- do you think that no one has become a chef, or food critic, or farmer because they like food? Obviously not everyone. But some people?
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    Quote Originally Posted by bernie1227 View Post
    Another point is, that where many professions may be glorified via the media, for example, people may watch csi or bones, and then think about becoming crime scene investigators or forensic anthropologists
    I can vouch for that... the exact thing happend to a family member.

    I have to disagree with you there Daniel. Just because people use something often doesn't mean they're remotely interested in what makes it tick or the more complex stuff you can do with it.
    I have a pile of friends who use a computer daily, but have never even heard of the cmd.
    Another example is facebook security settings, people use it without even bothering to change them. They don't even bother to explore the additional settings offered to them.

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    Those counterexamples are entirely irrelevant. I'm talking about a small percentage of people, obviously.

    What I'm saying is that the access to the computer (even in a relatively non-technical way) also gives potential access to programming and so forth.

    It's the same as advertising-- do you think that a Coke commercial makes every single viewer drink Coke? No, of course not, and the company doesn't believe that either. But what is the case, and is the reason that ads exist, is that some people who see the commercial buy the product. Simple as that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by djr33 View Post
    I didn't say all of them are going to become programmers.
    I didn't say none of them would, I'm just saying that just because they all interact with computers, it might not make an obvious change in the number of programmers.
    I don't really get your food metaphor. But sure, let's go with it-- do you think that no one has become a chef, or food critic, or farmer because they like food? Obviously not everyone. But some people?
    The point with my food metaphor, was that people working with computers should yield the same number of people becoming programmers as people becoming chefs, however, many people will have watched masterchef and the like on tv, which may influence them. How many programming competitions are there on tv?


    Quote Originally Posted by keyboard1333 View Post
    Another example is facebook security settings, people use it without even bothering to change them. They don't even bother to explore the additional settings offered to them.
    That's actually a good point. I'd be willing to bet money that less than 5% of Facebook users understand/care what the little checkbox saying secure http means, however vital it may be to their accounts security.
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program." - Linus Torvalds
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    My entire point was that programming is becoming less of a specialized thing. It's something that is relatively more accessible than it was before-- because people are exposed to computers, yes even if that's facebook with the wrong security settings (and I'm well aware of that, and I agree).

    And therefore, I think that the percentage of women involved in programming might go up-- they're just one step closer (already being familiar with computers), so why wouldn't more of them end up as programmers?
    Or do you think that there's something naturally "male" (culturally? biologically?) about programming?

    Over the past ten years, do you not think the number of programmers has gone up?


    (By the way, with the hundreds of millions of users on facebook, even 1% would be a significant change in the numbers, or distribution, of programmers.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by djr33 View Post
    Those counterexamples are entirely irrelevant. I'm talking about a small percentage of people, obviously.

    What I'm saying is that the access to the computer (even in a relatively non-technical way) also gives potential access to programming and so forth.
    While it does give potential access, as keyboard said (making his counter example about the cmd not irrelevant), it doesn't mean people are going to use it.
    But what is the case, and is the reason that ads exist, is that some people who see the commercial buy the product. Simple as that.
    Pretty irrelevant by me, but it's not as simple as that. The idea of advertisements is to get the product associated with the brand in the viewers head. Essentially brand promotion. So when the viewer realises they need detergent or whatever, and the only detergent they've seen ads for is mr. Dishwash for example, they're going to go with that, not some obscure brand they haven't heard of.
    Last edited by keyboard; 11-19-2012 at 06:04 AM. Reason: Fixed a spelling mistake for clarities sake.
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program." - Linus Torvalds
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    While it does give potential access, as keyboard said (making his counter example about the cmd not irrelevant), it doesn't mean people are going to use it.
    Not even some people?

    Pretty irrelevant by me, but it's not as simple as that. The idea of advertisements is to get the product associated with the brand in the viewers head. Essentially brand promotion. So when the viewer realises they need detergent or whatever, and the only detergent they've seen ads for is mr. Dishwash for example, they're going to go with that, not some obscure brand they haven't heard of.
    Sure. Sounds fine to me-- and when people think about what to do, is one of the first things that comes to mind doing something on the computer? And for some of them that wouldn't translate to a potential career or potential hobby?

    *shrug*

    Believe what you'd like. It's not really worth us debating on this one. (But your arguments seem illogical to me, just for the record.)
    Last edited by keyboard; 11-19-2012 at 06:04 AM. Reason: Read above reason (fixed the quote)
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    Quote Originally Posted by djr33 View Post
    My entire point was that programming is becoming less of a specialized thing. It's something that is relatively more accessible than it was before-- because people are exposed to computers, yes even if that's facebook with the wrong security settings (and I'm well aware of that, and I agree).
    Once again, people are exposed to cutlery, but that doesn't meant that cutlery making is less of a specialised thing. Computers are taken for granted. The fact that everyone opuses them does not make anymore people think about how they work than before.
    Or do you think that there's something naturally "male" (culturally? biologically?) about programming?
    [/quote]
    I think it's, as you said before with the powertools, considered quite in-feminine to be a programmer. It's purely a social thing. Thinking back to the kindergarten social system, all the girls will mostly like pink and purple and boys will mostly like blue and green. However childish that idea is, it survives in this idea. It's just not common to have a girl who likes programming. As the article I linked to said, only 17% of programmers are women.
    "Most good programmers do programming not because they expect to get paid or get adulation by the public, but because it is fun to program." - Linus Torvalds
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