Excuse the decided lack of weasels around here lately. I’ve been laboring to rebuild this site on a new domain. When you see it, you’re going to be, like, “what’s the big? It looks like the old site” (I know this, because I’ve heard it already). But I built this one! Myself! From scratch (kinda)!
This means learning yet another scripting language — WordPress pages are built with php. PHP stands for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor. It’s a recursive acronym. The first letter of the acronym is the acronym, so it stands for itself. This sort of thing appeals to people who spent childhood wiggling their fingers inside a mirror sandwich. Geek humor: it makes milk shoot out of your nose.
I once joked that I have written “hello world!” in fifty languages (oh, how we laughed!). I don’t know what it’s like in real programming, but over here in Artsy Fartsy World, every goddamn Web application and multimedia program has its own little scripting language (or markup language or scene description language). And they all have grammar that is maddeningly similar but maddeningly different. It’s maddening.
You can find tons of tutorials online, but they all start “a computer is a programmable device comprised of hardware and software.” And you’re, like, can we fast forward a little? The O’Reilly books are good, but if I bought a book every time I wanted to know something, I’d live in a house stacked floor to ceiling with books. Because I do.
What I want is something like a baseball card for programming languages. You know, like:
Goes with: Macromedia Director
Characteristics: feels like a scripting language built by a nonprogrammer who watched somebody else code one afternoon and guessed what all the funny words meant
At the end of each line of code: no character, a line of type is a line of code
Blocks of code are surrounded by: no character
Comment character: two dashes at the beginning
Like that. Anybody know of a site like that? This Wikibooks thing on programming languages is close. But I’m thinking more list, less blah-blah-blah.