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#1 DblAAssassin  Icon User is offline

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Maintaining a Language

Posted 21 June 2016 - 02:59 PM

So I've been learning Java from my high school for the past two years, and I've taken every Java course available. So, this means I won't be actively learning Java in a classroom setting for an entire year, until I start my college career. I really want to focus on web development over this year and I worry that I may lose all of my Java knowledge.

Does anyone have any tips on maintaining a programming language when it is not the language you're currently focusing on? Is forgetting all of my Java knowledge something I should even worry about?

p.s. Not sure if this is the right thread to post this is.

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Replies To: Maintaining a Language

#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Maintaining a Language

Posted 21 June 2016 - 03:05 PM

Do you forget how to ride a bike if you haven't in a day, week, or month? Do you forget how to write if you haven't while you slept?

Memory is fluid and certainly things can fuzz a bit. Additionally memory isn't some jargarita where you fill it up to X and leave it for sometime to have two inches evaporate on you to be lost in to the ether.
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#3 astonecipher  Icon User is offline

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Re: Maintaining a Language

Posted 21 June 2016 - 03:36 PM

Do you know it, or did you memorize it? If you know it, you just need to touch on it a little. If you memorized it, you will likely forget it as it will be replaced with something else.
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#4 CHGames  Icon User is offline

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Re: Maintaining a Language

Posted 26 November 2016 - 01:01 PM

If you really absorbed the material, you probably wo't completely forget it.

Can you make yourself a little "cheat sheet" that compares your new language to Java? For example, as you learn something new in your web dev language, maybe you can ask yourself, how does this compare with how I would have accomplished the same goal in Java? How is it similar and different? Did Java perhaps even handle this functionality in a better way?

I would think if anything, this gives you a chance to deepen your understanding of software and coding in general, by making those connections. Your computer science knowledge will ultimately transcend any one language.
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#5 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Maintaining a Language

Posted 26 November 2016 - 04:52 PM

I'm not sure that's an approach I'd recommend, myself. First of all, it's going to be most useful for languages that are very similar to Java, but what you want to be learning next are languages which are not very similar to Java - for example, to get a better understanding of programming you'd like to learn something like a Lisp or some such, and for practical applications you're likely to want to learn something like SQL. In neither case are you going to have a lot of luck with a "cheat sheet" based on the analogs to Java.

More important, I think you'll find that as you learn languages, particularly languages which are more removed from Java, the core concepts of CS will start to be more important to you, and you're going to be thinking about "how do we express this idea in this language?" and not so much about "in what way is this language like Java?"

In general, the best way to learn languages well is to use them. I suggest you start working your way through something like projecteuler.net or rosalind.info with Java until you feel like you really have Java under your belt and then start again on the same problems using some other language - preferably, as I said, something very unlike Java.
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#6 AshtonAsh  Icon User is offline

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Re: Maintaining a Language

Posted 02 December 2016 - 06:15 AM

My advice is to subscribe to the sites like Codechef.com, topcoder.com and similar. They will mail you twice-thrice a month about the latest algorithmic contests, take part in them using your the language of your choice. In you case Java.
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