Just started this course and am working on the problem set. I have found that there are a lot of things that I'd like to do but have never been able to find the right blocks. For example, I want to check whether an answer that I type in is an a positive integer. I looked up some potential options, and one of the things I could do was checking whether the answer contained a letter. The scratch wiki had something like this: https://en.scratch-wiki.info/wiki/Checking_if_a_String_Contains_a_String

How the heck are you supposed to come up with something like this yourself? How did the people who wrote this article come up with it? I don't think I could in a million years have implemented this myself...


1 Answer 1


I think the course defines itself as "introduction to the intellectual enterprises of computer science and the art of programming." It is indeed an art, there are people with an enormous talent for it, as there are for painting, mathematics or chess. Some of the most brilliant minds in history are dedicated to the creation of algorithms, from Eratostenes to Newton. Most likely, we are not any of these people. However, do not be discouraged by it. With work and effort it is possible to achieve great achievements, even writing such "difficult" programs as those you mention. But if you do not have much experience in programming, let's go step by step and calmly, if we want to eat a bite too big it is likely that we will choke.

  • Well said, MARS.
    – Cliff B
    Mar 19, 2019 at 23:58

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