Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for December 2nd, 2012

A coder’s thoughts on creativity

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Ones and zeros

One of the most effective guidelines is not to get stuck on a single approach. If writing the program in PDL isn’t working, make a picture. Write it in English. Write a short test program. Try a completely different approach. Think of a brute-force solution. Keep outlining and sketching with your pencil, and your brain will follow. If all else fails, walk away from the problem. Literally go for a walk, or think about something else before returning to the problem. If you’ve given it your best and are getting nowhere, putting it out of your mind for a time often produces results more quickly than sheer persistence can…

A brute force solution that works is better than an elegant solution that doesn’t work.

Steve McConnell, Code Complete

Written by nevalalee

December 2, 2012 at 9:50 am

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