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Frightened to make mistakes


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Lockeyp Lockeyp is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 05:25 AM #1
Frightened to make mistakes
I would like start to learn a programing language, from my computer, but I am frightened to try, you hear of inexperienced programmers introducing viruses into the environment.
I also don't know where to start. ‘Could I install a program that would keep it contain like 'Word - where you can work within it making various documents and it won’t affect any of the other programs' (it would be like in its own environment). Could I work in the Windows Environment for (EG) ‘Where do I start?’

I had been on a 26wks, course about fifteen or so years ago. Before the millennium glitch, being taught on their pre-installed computers, so I hoping you can see why I in need of some sound advice: The language that I am thinking about C/C++ also C#. Or if you could suggest any others and what they could be used for it would be a help.

Your help would be very much appreciated

Many Thanks

Lockeyp

Last edited by Lockeyp; 16-Aug-2012 at 05:46 AM..
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Ent   (Josiah) Ent is offline Ent is a Trusted Advisor with special permissions.
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16-Aug-2012, 07:21 AM #2
You can't accidentally write a virus. You can accidentally write a program that crashes, but that's not going to affect anything else. In the worst case situation you could restart the machine and everything would be fine.

It is possible that you could write insecure programs, especially as you get into networking, which could be exploited by malware to infect your machine, but that would depend on a very experienced cracker getting hold of the software. Realistically it would be far too much work for such a person.
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tootle tootle is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 07:48 AM #3
Their are all kinds of languages for different purposes, what are you interested in writing programs for?
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ckphilli   (Chris) ckphilli is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 08:05 AM #4
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Originally Posted by Ent View Post
In the worst case situation you could restart the machine and everything would be fine.
And there you have it. You could accidentally write what could be considered annoyance malware, but again, all you have to do is restart so it really isn't "malware".

Don't be scared. Even if you get yourself in a perma loop of death, restart-learn-rinse and repeat.
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janikPilot   (Michael) janikPilot is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 08:25 AM #5
As previously stated, there's no way you can accidentally make a virus, or any malicious software.

I believe you are thinking of something called an IDE, or Integrated Development Environment. They are programs used to well, write other programs They're like a programmer's tool box. When I first started learning C++, I used Code::Blocks. I could never figure out the header files and I didn't like how it was platform-dependent. I never really developed in C++ for that reason. I started in Java two years ago using Eclipse as my IDE. It's much easier to learn, and it's platform-independent. It's merely your personal choice as to which language you like to learn. There's literally hundreds of languages out there.
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MockyConstructor MockyConstructor is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 03:36 PM #6
If you don't really even know any programming languages much, and you don't even know how to write virus programs, how can you "accidentally" create one?

That's like "accidentally" learning rocket science.

You're 100% fine. The worst case scenario is that your anti-virus program(if you have one running)may report your program as a "threat" even though it isn't one.
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16-Aug-2012, 05:03 PM #7
The only exception would be if you included someone else's code in your program without understanding what it did. Be as careful about running anyone else's code as you'd be about executing an exe file the same person sent you.

Basically the take home message is that writing malware is hard, it's not something that you're going to do by accident.
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janikPilot   (Michael) janikPilot is offline
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16-Aug-2012, 07:10 PM #8
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Originally Posted by Ent View Post
The only exception would be if you included someone else's code in your program without understanding what it did. Be as careful about running anyone else's code as you'd be about executing an exe file the same person sent you.
This cannot be stressed enough. One of the biggest mistakes I see programmers make is to just copy and paste code without knowing what it does, or even worse, executing terminal commands without knowing what they do. The #1 rule in computer programming is, "If you don't know what it does, either learn what it does or refrain from using it."
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BitsBytesNSikes BitsBytesNSikes is offline
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17-Aug-2012, 03:03 PM #9
Copying and pasting little source codes for, let's say, a Tetris-clone game wouldn't cause much worry, because most of the coding instructions(at least in higher or intermediate level languages)can be broken down easily and understand by any programmer, given that they're somewhat experienced with the language.

In such a case, copy and paste can be essential, but if you have not a clue on how the code works, can't break it down or can't understand it before you test it, why bother?

It'll be the equivalent of just using something that another person made entirely, unless it's just for testing purposes, it really doesn't give any one a real sense of accomplishment to compile/execute already written code.

So basically ... case-closed ... or almost.
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18-Aug-2012, 06:25 AM #10
Do not fear for programming. You will not write virus accidentally. You might be worrying because it is C++, the language possible of anything, but still, it is under the programmers hand. You might import built in lib accidentally, but they are not created to hack and put virus in your system. If you are afraid of compile error or run time errors, then you can't program. I do programming everyday using Java and C++, but I still make run time issues at times. Use a good IDE if you want, I prefer netbeans, because I have used eclipse too.

Finally, defeat this fear soon.
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