What is a programmer?

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closed account (G30GNwbp)
If anyone would like to share their opinion I would appreciate it. The reason I ask is for me personally the word is no longer useful. Now-a-days people will call a database administrator who regularly write simple queries a "programmer", or a LAN administrator who can write a batch file a "programmer".

In fact, when someone tells me they're a programmer--I always ask what languages do you program in most often, and what do you do at your firm? Because programmer is just too vague for me.

I actually get paid to write simple scripts at my firm--does that make me a programmer (my employer thinks so)? But I can say with complete honesty that I often see 17-year-old kids posting answers here that suggest to me that they're better programmers than me (I probably should say might be, because there are always those people who understand the theory but can never practically apply it to a problem.)
No it is useful.
Because there are three main things in the computer electronics.
A programmer,Net worker and a electronics engineer.
The programmer is one of them because without him the computer priceless without him.
The programmer writes everything on the computer so he write simple queries or LAN batch files.
Who writes a very simple program is called a programmer.
By the way I am 12-year-old kid :)
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The programmer writes everything on the computer so he write simple queries or LAN batch files.


Correction, a programmer who writes anything that touches any part of the LAN beyond his own computers local DNS cache gets stomped on by the Network Administrator. Network and Domain\Systems Admins (I have been the later for a bit over a decade by the way) dedicate a healthy amount of attention and resources to programmers projects just so that they can play around in their test environment to their black little hearts content and stay the heck out of production! That is at least until we are given adequate notice of what is being changed, when it is being changed, who it is expected to impact and what roll back options exist (HA!).
I love the google definition for "programmer":

pro·gram·mer
ˈprōˌgramər/Submit
noun
1.
a person who writes computer programs.
^ Holy crap we got the topic programmers-are-script-kiddies-these-days finished and correctly resolved in under one page.
To be a programmer doesn't necessarily mean they make software or write code anymore. For example, if you prepare the program schedule for radio or television you are called a programmer.

As for what makes a programmer, that to is subject to the person. I've been told I'm not a programmer even though I've been doing it for almost 20 years and have used C++ exclusively, but dabbled with tons of languages in that time. If you are writing scripts, you are a programmer (after all there are Ruby, Python, Lua, and Perl programmers who write scripts in said languages).

A 17 year old seems like he codes better than you...that means nothing. A programmer can always improve where they are bad. So I wouldn't let someone appearing to be better at something or in a specific area bother you because you can always learn more, improve, and in time may surpass that user.
A 17 year old seems like he codes better than you...that means nothing. A programmer can always improve where they are bad. So I wouldn't let someone appearing to be better at something or in a specific area bother you because you can always learn more, improve, and in time may surpass that user.


There's a great deal of difference between having the time to surpass someone and actually doing it! Furthermore, to argue with someone significantly younger than you, who is already better than you, that you still have time to surpass them seems folly.
pro·gram·mer
ˈprōˌgramər/Submit
noun
1. a person who turns caffeine and pizza into software.
There's a great deal of difference between having the time to surpass someone and actually doing it!

The only difference is the amount of dedication and drive the person has.
Furthermore, to argue with someone significantly younger than you, who is already better than you, that you still have time to surpass them seems folly.

He may have a better attitude than me, but seeing as I've never posted code from my projects and only post code to help beginners you can only assume he is better than me.

@Canis lupus
You forgot Romen Ramen noodles:

a person who turns caffeine, pizza, and romen ramen noodles into software.
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You forgot Romen noodles:


Romen? You mean Ramen? Or is there actually something called Romen and I've never heard of it?

As for the topic:

A miserable little pile of code.
No it is Ramen, I only buy them ever three or four months so I couldn't remember the proper spelling so took a stab at it.
The programming field is so large that if your company is having you write simple scripts then you are a programmer. You don't have to write huge complex software to be a programmer. I know several programmers who only make web sites, others who make games, others who do make software, yet others who just do in-house libraries, tools, and APIs, and others that do odd jobs for everything in between.
The programming field is so large that if your company is having you write simple scripts then you are a programmer scripter?


In my book, things have to be compiled to be considered 'programming', interpreted code is simply scripting. Otherwise those who write mathematica input as plain english would also have to be considered "programmers" just the same as those who write batch scripts and those infernal sudo-bash thingymawhats.

All this speak of instant noodles is making me hungry. Only instead of ramen, I'm thinking burgers.
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In my book, things have to be compiled to be considered 'programming', interpreted code is simply scripting.

The flaw in that logic is that almost any compiled language can be interpreted and almost any interpreted language can be compiled. In fact I think some scripting languages come with a compiler to compile it (like Lua, for example).
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I don't see any flaws. If you compile your language into binary, it's a program. (Programmer) Otherwise it's just a script. (Scripter)

Just because a language allows users to do both doesn't detract from the crystal clear classification between being compiled or interpreted.
I don't see any flaws.

That is fine, but I feel it is rude and almost demeaning to say scripters aren't programmers.
IMHO scripters are often times more talented than many programmers. I certainly couldn't produce some of the content that scripters do, especially if there is an 'art factor' involved (like in game development, *or doing anything useful in linux without trashing the OS).

I don't view one as greater than the other. It's just a different kind of work.
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To me saying you are a programmer is of little usefulness. It involves activities such as the analysis, understanding of a problem; generating a generic solution, verification of the requirements and the proposed solution; implementing the solution; testing, debugging and maintaining the source; etc. It doesn't matter if you use a scripting language, compiled language, or a graphical language.

'Programmer' is a broad brush to paint roughly paint people with and is a fairly meaningless term.
I think the worst use of the term is people who really don't know what they're doing.

Such as:
RandomIdiot wrote:
yeah I'm a programmer
me wrote:
cool, me too. What languages you use?
RandomIdiot wrote:
Just English


As for what the term actually means, I think that if you're able to take a problem and solve it, or create something completely new, both through scripting (compiled or not) then you're programming
If you write a code, you're a programmer. Simple as that.

Note, programming != Software engineering.
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