re: How old have you been when you started programming and what was your first project? VIEW POST


As a freshman in college, 1988, I found that the school I attended did not require the two years of foreign language I took, but instead wanted a class on computer (BASIC on DOS) literacy. So I took a remedial course my first semester.

I was a gamer and occasional DM at the time, so I wrote a tool to print off a page or so of random 1-6 numbers. And then I did it again, and got the same list of "random" numbers. Computers are deterministic and don't really understand random, so you must seed your random number generators. (Plus, for crypto, use the small remainders of key punching times or a webcam pointed at a lava lamp or something.)

I also developed code that would allow me to easily switch between 1-6 and 1-12 or 1-20 (because AD&D needed all available dice styles) but the GOTOs jumping in and out were frustrating and weird, making me understand why people prefer subroutines rather than GOTOs, which are "considered harmful".

I then didn't write another thing for something like seven years, while using computers constantly.


Perhaps it's because I grew up with computers, but my favorite thing about DnD is that it takes me away from computers. 😄


1988 was a different time.

Usage would be I scratch off "used" random numbers so the lack of rolling behind the screen would begin to worry the players.

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