My First Programming Teacher

By: Jeff Clark    Date: Mon, 29 Dec 2008

It's been about 12 days since I launched my little tool called Twitter Venn. I'm happy to see it getting a reasonable amount of attention from many people on Twitter. After the launch I have been monitoring the attention using the excellent Twitter Search. It helps me gauge the interest, answer any questions, and of course get feedback for problems or extensions. I was very happy to see it referenced in Amber MacArthur's show commandN on Dec 22nd.

One of the people who watched her show and then checked out Twitter Venn was my first programming teacher, Doug Peterson. He mentioned it on twitter and I noticed his picture and name. It's great to be back in touch after so long. He has written up his thoughts on the reconnection as well. He introduced me to the joy of programming around 28 years ago and I haven't stopped since !

I have very fond recollections of those days back around 1980 using BASIC on the TRS-80. My best friend Robert Berg and I stayed late at school many evenings in order to get enough time on the school computer. I also remember coding (on about 200 cards!) a picture of my eyeball using ASCII characters. I didn't realize it until a few weeks ago but my recent experiments in Word Portraits are obviously direct descendants of ideas I played around with when I was 15.

Thank you, Mr. Peterson. Your enthusiasm, teaching ability, and knowledge of programming have had a deep positive impact on me. It's given me a career, a hobby, and a creative outlet all at once.


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