Some Misconceptions

tl;dr - developing is a complicated process, and programming is by far not the hardest part of it.


Counterintuitive, right? Most people think of computer scientists as programmers, that sit around all day typing and magically creating video games or websites. Before I started programming, I thought the hardest part was learning the language, and when you understood, it was something like "POOF! There's the next Facebook". It's not exactly like that, although like I said, developers are wizards.

If there was one false paradigm that I could dispel from public opinion, it would be the public perception of computer science. If more people recognized the inordinate impact of CS, they would know it will be the driver of revolutions in business, science, culture, and technology in the next 20 years. It's not all about building giant death robots (but if you're into world domination, I feel like Boston Dynamics will be a big part of it).

The difficulties in programming are actually more about designing than they are about typing, and most of the time is spent solving problems. How can I split up this problem? How can I solve this subproblem? Hence, often the next most useful tool for a developer is a whiteboard or a pen and paper. Or, if you're a hipster, papyrus. And a carrier pigeon.

Programming is becoming a tool that is increasingly widespread in industries from writing to economics to design. Programming is moving out of its own specified domain, and empowering millions of problem solvers and artists. So yes, computer science is awesome.