Monday, June 20, 2011

Pull Quotes Without Closing Quote Marks

Like most programmers, I’m not great at design. I try to improve my skills in this area by reading books and websites about design (like Smashing Magazine).

But there’s something I’ve been seeing on design websites that bothers me. It’s the way they do pull quotes. Typically they look something like this:

There’s a big opening quote mark to indicate it’s a quote – but no closing quote mark. Now I know its suppose to be stylish – but it really annoys me. When I write code there is always a symmetry. Every ( has a matching ), every { has a } – and every open quote has a close quote. I think my brain sees pull quotes like the one above and hollers out “syntax error.”

Friday, June 3, 2011

Programming History

I’ve been reading a book about the development of early programming languages. I was surprised to learn how many features of modern languages where first developed in Algol (circa 1960).

It was also a little weird seeing a forerunner of C#’s using statement (“imports” in VB.NET) in Ada.

It’s eye-opening to realize that features you take for granite where new ideas at one point. They’ve been refined over the years to the state that we know them now.