The Joy of Reinventing the Wheel
2019-10-11Yes, good code has already been written, so why try and do it yourself?
I'm not really sure why I feel compelled to do this. Is it the challenge of creating an algorithm? Like taking apart a clock to see what makes it tick? I do know that I have learned a lot from this back-engineering effort, especially when the existing code is way over my head. And it's especially gratifying when a DIY project actually works.
Two website applications have completely baffled me - text editors and drag-and-drop utilities. Both require skills and knowledge that are light years ahead of what I possess. However. I did find easier ways to do both.
When I discovered markdown syntax, I found a way to avoid using a real text editor by building a DIY markdown parsing algorithm in PHP. It's primitive, but seems to do the trick and taught me a lot about the way text is handled in a browser.
The internet is always churning up new applications to stretch our programming skills. Like many people, I can never feel that I know very much in the face of the overwhelming information out there, but the good news is that I will never be bored!