[erlang-questions] Beginners tutorials

Anthony Ramine n.oxyde@REDACTED
Sat Jun 14 01:56:34 CEST 2014

Replied inline.

Le 14 juin 2014 à 01:20, lloyd@REDACTED a écrit :

> My apologies, Anthony, if I sounded too harsh. I've felt Steve Vinoski's lash and appreciate his tribute to you.

No offense taken at all.

> I certainly agree that spelling and careful editing are an essential part of the publication process. And your point re: outside review is well taken.
> But, with all respect, I contend that constructive encouragement is a more effective way to promote vital community involvement than harsh rebuke.

I could point out all the typos, or aspell could do it. The jokes are a matter of taste. To me their generous use makes the whole thing sound a bit too amateurish. I don’t even feel concerned by some of them, like the bloodier steak, is that a regional thing? Is it beef? I usually prefer veal.

> But maybe you and Steve are touching on an essential issue: 
> Just exactly who with what experience and qualifications would the Erlang community like to attract and invite into the fold? 
> Clarity on this question should inform any and all documentation including beginner tutorials. 
> If only staid, respectable engineers and corporate executives are invited, then I don't fit. 
> I'm a novelist/small press publisher --- army of one --- looking to master Erlang sufficiently well to build tools that I need in my business. I've been programming for many years, indeed owned a software development shop for more than two decades. I don't doubt that as a programmer my best day is miles behind your worst. For that reason, I don't consider myself a professional programmer.

I am a hobbyist who doesn’t use the language professionally. My bad days are as bad as yours and my good days just come from reading the OTP code on my free time. Nice to know someone is using Erlang in press publishing.

> That said, I found Gordon's site both interesting and informative. I learned a great deal that I had no idea was going on in the Erlang world even though I do make efforts to keep up.
> But that highlights a second point: We do, I'd venture, agree that there is a very fine line between interesting, accessible discourse and talking down to your audience. Problem is, what's interesting and accessible to me as a semi-technically literate reader may well be disrespectful to you as an experienced Erlang wizard. As they say, horses for courses; different strokes for different folks.

I don’t mind trying to reach beginners with layman terms, though maybe people could try to do that in the documentation directly, so that people can comment in a better fashion. Layman terms aren’t disrespectful at all, they just need to be correctly used.

> One thing I can't sufficiently emphasize, however, is how much I appreciate Erlang and the community that has worked so hard to make it the fine set of tools that we have today. I feel like I owe a tremendous debt. But given my vast ignorance, the only thing I have at present to contribute is the noobie perspective and the ability to ask stupid questions.

Ignorance just begs to be eradicated and questions to be answered. Erlang gives you the advantage of being boring and unsurprising to read, if you wish to know more about how OTP behaviours and friends work, it’s just a matter of reading their code of a key set of modules and trying to reach a person willing to help, did I mention IRC?

> And that is my sole motive for speaking out on this thread.

Nothing wrong with that.

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