Sunday, March 18, 2012

Programming In A Nutshell (Peanuts)

FYI, if you can't tell that I added Indy 500 and OutRunners pics to the side bar, then you're an idiot.  Those pics are taking up too much space.  If you're gonna beg for a new game, then it's not likely unless I redo the whole entire thing again.  Anyway...

As I work on Super Sprint 1.1, the code just keeps getting larger and larger.  More stuff to keep track of.  So let me explain what programming a game is like in layman's terms.

You remember Peanuts, the comic strip/cartoon with Charlie Brown & Snoopy?  There was an episode called "You're a Good Sport, Charlie Brown" (1975) in which Charlie Brown and Snoopy enter a motocross race.  Here's what goes down in programming terms:

"I'm working on this program and kicking ass."

"I got a lot of work done, I'm the greatest!"

"Oops, ran into some bugs that sidetracked me, now I'm pissed."

Then at this point, Snoopy literally takes parts off his bike and sticks them in a tennis ball machine.  And he drives off seconds later.  This is what programming's all about--haphazardly throwing a bunch of pieces in a machine and somehow it all works together and you sit there in awe and say, "Oh well, if it works, I'll take it!"

"I'm back, baby!!!"

"I'm so happy I'll stop working for a while and have a picnic!!"

"I'm nearly done with development, I'm going to blow the door off everyone's hinges!!!"

Then you fall short of your goal cause the program is hardly functional and/or no one cares about it anymore.  So that's an EPIC FAIL.

Charlie Brown wins the race at a slow & steady pace.  Which makes perfect sense, describing the Producer-Programmer relationship in that the charismatic, likeable producer will always win (you seldom hear about great game programmers, do you?) and the programmers will always be lapdogs (like Snoopy) that LOSE.

But what does Charlie Brown win?  A free haircut.  Charlie Brown hardly has any hair and his dad is a barber.  Just like Producers make less money and have a lower hiring rate than Programmers.  HA, SOMEDAY, PROGRAMMERS WILL RULE THE WORLD!!!  (BILL GAMES!!!)
JK, we're still cool with Producers, right?

I think it's time to go to bed.


  1. yay! charlie brown! i remember that..
    great analogy..

    i used to be a programmer a long time
    ago, and know the feeling..

    and thanks for putting up INDY 500!
    and the previous comparison with ace driver..

    someday you'll play the game.
    and don't forget to check out
    the new faq i put up at gamefaqs,
    along with the youtube videos of
    all the 1st place finishes..


  2. Thanks man, still good to have you around. If you have any interesting links, post them here.