Eclipse and Java in schools oh my!

juno-splashHave you ever had your child come to you with school work and feel like, “wow, I have no idea how to do that” or you have to read the chapter to remember how to do something? Well for the first time in a long time I was able to whip an answer out in seconds. I get a text from my son asking if I can help him and his friend with some college homework and he mentions they are Eclipse questions. My first thought was “wow, they are using Eclipse in school?”. And I was correct, they are using Eclipse and even programming in Java! I was pretty shocked but apparently after scouring the internet a lot of colleges are now using Java and Eclipse.

They came over and showed me their “problem” and it really wasn’t an Eclipse question, it was just a basic programming question – which was fine. But then I showed them something that shocked them – the debugger.  When I went to test the code I immediately put a break point and clicked debug. They had no idea what a debugger is or what setting a break point is. The instructor is clearly focusing on the programming aspects of the course but I wonder if the instructor took 30 minutes to explain a debugger and break points and variable inspection how much time the students could save doing their homework.

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