Antranig Vartanian

June 5, 2024

I’m having a hard time understanding how these BootCamps work. Their whole value is teaching people how to code, sometimes they also teach programming, but not always. As far as I can tell, they never teach how to use a computer, which is weird.

Take car mechanics as an example, I assume they know how to use a car and the basics of how it works before they start fixing things. But the same doesn’t seem to be true about coding/programming.

I met with a couple of students today who were going to a BootCamp to learn coding-y, DevOps-y and Security things, but they were not able to define what an OS process is. They also had a hard time interacting with a computer.

How did we get here? No, this is not a rhetorical question, I really want to know.

I’m not saying that everyone should know everything about every operating system, but during your work, where you get paid, you will need to use tools such as grep, AWK, xargs, etc.

I remember, once, years ago, I was supposed to teach “security” to a group of students, but I realized it would be more helpful if I teach them Unix and computer networking, so we ended up doing that.

Months after their graduation, I saw one of the students, and he asked me “hey, can we do these Unix classes again? Looks like they were important”.

I ended up mentoring him, and now he does mostly Taco Bell programming and he gets things done.

My feeling is that we need a book for everyone that’s named “learn this before learning how to program” and we teach basic things such as process management, service management, the Unix shell, how a computer network works, etc.

But alas, I barely have time to blog, however I feel that this computer book would be a best seller everywhere.

Back to work, cheers.

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