30 March 2014

Threes and 2048

One of the creators of Threes: The Rip-offs & Making Our Original Game

What the creators of Threes don’t realize is that—just as subtle differences between Threes and 2048 makes Threes a better game—some of the subtle difference also make 2048 a better game.

The biggest is perhaps start-up time. In a quick one-sample trial, Threes took 12 seconds from launch to play; 2048, 2. For a mobile game, that can be the difference from getting in ten seconds of play versus not playing at all.

As much as I appreciate the personality of Threes (and I appreciated the catchy soundtrack enough to buy it from iTunes), I also appreciate the austerity of 2048.

Threes is deeper, and it shows.

I can’t say it comes easy to me, but I think we’d be better off if we could get past this ownership of ideas concept.

If so, then people would also be more likely to openly credit their inspirations.

25 March 2014

Why can’t Johnny reverse a linked list?

Colleges: You are graduating computer science/software engineering students who don’t understand pointers, floating-point, or what a closure is. (And I don’t mean that they don’t understand the terms; they don’t understand the concepts.)

It is so frustrating when I don’t get to talk to an interview candidate about higher level concerns because they don’t know the fundamentals. (It is even more frustrating when I do get a chance to talk about higher level concepts only to find they don’t have a grasp of those either.)

Even if you don’t believe that pointers and floating-point are as fundamental to the working software engineer as reading is to a secondary school student, at least tell them not to put C on their resume if they don’t understand these concepts. And tell them not to list Javascript if they don’t understand floating-point or closures.

I’m not so idealistic to think that a degree can ever be a guarantee of anything, but the current situation is that the degrees you are handing out are worthless.

Students: I don’t think the moral of the story is to not go to college. I may not have graduated, but college did expose me to things I might not have been exposed to otherwise. Understand that college will not prepare you for your career. College is an opportunity for you to prepare yourself for your career. You will get out of it what you put in.