Was reading the Scripting chapter in SLOG and most of it went over my head. There was a line in there about “it works the same way it did in your high school physics class.” Now, I actually did take Physics in high school, but it was by far my worst and least favorite subject. The teacher was a giant of a man, with some kind of Southern drawl. His name was Mr. Mayhew and he would scare us by telling us this was what college was going to be like. In other words, very hard.
We were all terrified (at least, I was terrified; and I knew the guy sitting next to me was terrified). Mr. Mayhew would present the day’s problem(s) and go up and down the rows calling on us to see if anyone knew the answer.
“Come on, Billah!” Mr. Mayhew would bellow to a kid named Billy. “You got a Cadillac in the backyard and you’re walkin’!”
After several kids didn’t have the foggiest idea, he’d throw it open to the class. So on the rare occasions when I did have the answer — or a stab at an answer, or a little bit of something he could use to move the problem forward — I’d raise my hand and volunteer it. That was a great feeling and it made the terrified kid next to me suffer even more with envy.
When I did get to college, Freshman Calc was a required course. It was held in a giant classroom that was really like an auditorium or amphitheater. The professor seemed VERY far away (maybe that was because I sat VERY FAR AWAY from him, way up in the cheap seats).
I remember the exact moment I gave up on Calc — and Math altogether. The professor began a problem on the blackboard at the extreme lefthand side of the stage. He continued the problem onto the next board, then the next, then the next, filling up (I swear) five boards and ending up at the extreme right hand side.
Then he walked back over to the first board on the left, erased what was on it — AND CONTINUED WORKING ON THE PROBLEM!!! That was it. I spent the rest of the semester staring at M.C. Escher prints from my Art textbook.
Oh, so anyway… back to Scripting. It’s kinda like that for me: Physics, Math, Calc. But I did have one really neat thought while reading the chapter. I felt that it was trying to introduce me to basic computer programming. In other words, this SLOG chapter was like a classroom primer. And I suddenly had the feeling that, as one of a million-plus SL users, I was being initiated gently into this grand computer programming project.
So SL is one big giant collaborative programming project. Huh.