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12-Step Programming On:2010-11-17 00:00:00

Hello! My name is Richard and ...and ...I’m a computer programmer.
I admit I am powerless against the Code and that my recursive class methods have become unmanageable.

I have come to believe in a higher level language that can restore some sort of sanity.
I need to make amends for all the times that I ignored Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines though, come to think of it, I never did anything at all that was as amend-worthy as Control-Alt-Delete.

I realise that one line of code is too much and three thousand four hundred and seventy three lines written in Objective C is too little.

I know this from personal experience.

I admit that I am so far gone that I wallow all day and every day, apart from some weekends---in several different programming languages and at least a couple of database systems, even using the utterly feeble excuse that that’s my job and I get paid to do it.

My life has got so out of control that I’ve recently started to play with really weird stuff: minimalist Turing-inspired languages, like the one that uses just three keywords, ‘Ook.’ ‘Ook!’ and ‘Ook?’ so that, according to its creator, a guy who had such a stunning imagination that he also named the language “Ook! ”, ... so that, in his words, it would ‘be easy for orang-utans to read and to prevent any mention of the word "monkey" around them’, the which seems to be a reference to novels by a guy called Terry Pratchett, though, since Mr Pratchett isn’t, as far as I know, a programmer, I don’t see why anyone would want to refer to him.

Oh and by the way, if you are the sort of person who likes to use the ‘proper’ plurals for words, who likes to know for example that octopodes is the correct plural for octopus or that ‘*viri” isn’t the correct anything for ‘virus’ (the word ‘virus’ apparently, being a Latin neuter o-stem in -us, a fact which leaves its plural rather a mystery, a mystery which is then wrapped in an enigma by it being attested in Latin only in the nom. and acc.---and why on Earth anyone should try to show off by making such a ridiculous mistake is a riddle to us all) you might like to know what the proper plural for orang-utan is.

It’s orang-orang-utan.

I wonder if I should write some viruses to hack all on-line dictionaries to make that change automatically: That would make amends.
I think?

Not only am I addicted to coding and scripting, but I also have a serious problem, one of a more substantial nature, with the latest technological toys, and unluckily for me I tend to get free (or at least free-ish) ‘tastes’ that technology’s dealers use to keep people like me hooked on whatever happens to be latest, for example I have at this very moment an iPad provided by my dealer---I mean my employer. But at least I’m able to say that, even for me, there are limits.
Powerless as I am against the high of High-Tech, I’m sure as Hell not going to spend my own money on one till Apple finally put in it that damn camera that they couldn’t be bothered to include in the current iPad, as I’m sure you all found out when you pulled yours apart at the moment you got it and you saw the space they’d left for the camera, just like I did.

So to conclude this searching and fearless moral inventory of my life as a programmer, I admit that I don’t know how I’m going to escape from this endless round of going on code binges---often while wearing a pocket protector---and then following them, sometimes weeks later, by going cold turkey with early mediæval English literature, not of course that there are any mentions of turkeys in early mediæval English literature, I mean the bird wasn’t introduced to England till the 16th century, so how could it?

Yes, literature is my only hope, though it sits strangely with my addiction to code, especially with my addiction to the descendants of the language C (famous for having every line of code terminated with a semicolon;) because being both a programmer and a literature buff; that’s the only time I can place semicolons with any degree of confidence;
Cheerio for now;
Richard Howland-Bolton;

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