Help me pick a programming class

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by bennypod, Mar 13, 2008.

  1. bennypod macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2007
    Does anyone know if C++ will be a good class to take? I'm in eighth grade and picking classes for high school. I plan on writting apps for the iPhone and Mac.
  2. Jeremy1026 macrumors 68020


    Nov 3, 2007
    Whatever class that offers programming, without knowing what classes are offered its hard to say which is best.
  3. bennypod thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2007
    Also i should mention that we would be working on PCs (yuck! JK). Would it be hard to transfer my skills to the Mac? Should I bring in my MacBook? I will post the different classes tomorrow-ish. Thanks so much!
  4. MacFanBoyIIe macrumors 6502

    Feb 22, 2008
    And you want to be a code monkey. Hmmmm.....

    Just kidding.
    Yes, C++ is the way to go, for now.
  5. sord macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2004
    As far as bringing in your MacBook - not sure if times have changed, but when I was in highschool we weren't allowed to bring in our own machines (granted they usually weren't laptops).

    And unless you do win32 API specific code, you should be fine using XCode for your class on your Mac.
  6. gifford macrumors 6502


    Jun 11, 2007
    Miserable England
    You can use c++ on the mac.

    Though I would just learn c, whilst reading apples OO documents and other OO documents on the interweb. Never been fond of c++ personally but each to their own. It's powerful/semi-portable but messy IMO. Depends on what you ultimately want to do I suppose.
  7. bennypod thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2007
  8. admanimal macrumors 68040

    Apr 22, 2005
    Not really, but both C++ and Objective C are supersets of C, so the knowledge will transfer.
  9. yeroen macrumors 6502a


    Mar 8, 2007
    Cambridge, MA
    Your junior high school offers classes in C++ programming? That's really impressive, even if at that level they won't be able to cover more than the most superficial aspects of the language.

    If you've never programmed before, you should know what it is you're getting into. Programming non-trivial applications is hard, and it can take years of practice before one becomes proficient at it, not unlike learning to play a musical instrument. Don't expect to take one class to turn you into an expert, or even borderline passable, programmer. Even at the university level, Computer Science programs have a high proportion of wash-outs.

    The good news is that you're at the perfect age to begin learning how to do it. You kids can be awfully clever and resourceful when you're motivated (how many creative hackers are only teens?). If I were you, I'd take the time to learn Objective-C and Cocoa alongside your school programming course, since Obj-C/Cocoa is what Mac application development is all about.

    (and since I mentioned musical instruments, take some unsolicited advice and pick up some skills on one of those, if you haven't yet already; later on, it won't matter even if you're ugly, chicks will want you if you know how to play the guitar)
  10. bennypod thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2007
    yeroen- Yeah I'm a musical person, I play flute, bassoon and piano (not sure if these are really "sexy" instruments but oh well) I agree everyone should learn an instrument.I have a guitar but can't play let alone pay for lessons for it. No i'm not spioled the bassoon is the schools flute is my aunts. Yeah we have a pretty good school system, (the best band in the state pretty much) we have a very high graduation rate and the standards are set pretty high. I'm in 8th going into 9th so we are picking our classes for 9th grade.

    Thanks for the help everyone, i'm having a hard time picking what I want to do. I know I want to do somthing computer related when i'm older so the C++ class would be the best for me.
  11. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    If you know nothing about programming then even if they only offered FORTRAN you would learn transferable skills. The skill you need to learn is simply how to take an idea for a simple program and transfer that into a set modules where each is composed of written instructions and data structures. The language they use to teach that skill is not so important. Once you learn one programming language the second is easy.

    I'm not to far off with my comment. I actually DID take a class in FORTRAN when I was in the 8th grade (Early 1970s) and from there is was easy to move on to Algol, PL/1, Jovial, Lisp and the others that were in use back then.

    But you are lucky C++ is kind of close to Objective C. There is a large overlap.
  12. kuwisdelu macrumors 65816

    Jan 13, 2008
    In your case, either C or C++ are good languages to learn to begin programming on a Mac. Both OS X and the iPhone OS use Objective-C, which is a superset of C, so while you will still have to learn a new language after you're done with the class, you'll have a very good grounding to build from, and there is lots of overlap. Both C++ and Objective-C are built from C, so you'll be in great shape, I think.

    Unless you have lots of free time, though, I'd suggest holding off trying to learn Objective-C and Cocoa until you're done with your class, otherwise you may just end up confusing yourself.

    Oh, and find out beforehand whether the class uses Windows APIs or if it's a general C++ class just using the Standard Library. You should probably ask the teacher, as your counselor probably won't know. If the class uses Windows API, then you'll have to put a copy of Windows on your Mac. If you are just using STL and such (which I imagine should be the case at your level, unless you end up doing GUI stuff) then using OS X's XCode will be just fine.

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