Help. I work with a guy who really wants to learn programming (he’s sales/support rn) and is even taking some courses on it. He seems eager enough to learn, the problem is he is just so fucking stupid I don’t know whether to encourage him or level with him.

He somehow managed to pass a course on Java (which I still don’t believe since I had to help him put his lines of code in the right order ffs), but now he’s signed up for C++ and data structures and I honestly don’t know how he’s going to do it.

This is the type of guy who loves “coding” but thinks debugging is a waste of time.

Normally I encourage anyone who wants to learn programming do so, but let’s be honest it does take a modicum of intelligence and this guy has zero common sense at all. We’re talking about a guy who sent me a *screenshot* of an Excel file that I needed to copy some activation codes from. And then had absolutely no idea what was wrong when I replied “are you fucking with me right now?”


And that’s not even scratching the surface. I sent him a zip file containing some updated code and walked him through how to update them on Slack (really basic, copy/replace files stuff). Then the VERY next day when I sent him a second update he asks “is there something you want me to do with this?”

The instructions were literally the last thing we talked about in the chat log.

I actually fear the stuff this guy would unleash upon the world if someone were actually able to teach him how to write a whole program.

What should I do? Right now my plan is to be vaguely supportive but secretly hope he will realize he’s in over his head and drop out before any damage is done. But my worry is he may just be SO dumb that he actually thinks he can do it. At that point I guess I just have to put my faith in his school and pray that they aren’t just giving degrees away to whoever can afford them. Because fear the day this guy ever gets a degree in programming.

  • 4
    Yeaaaaars ago. When I was 15 I could not even fathom the idea of being able to code, shit I didn't even knew what coding was and working with something as simple as excel was a MAJOR task for me.

    By all means I was considered a moron when it came to computers and I had friends who would make fun of me for it. I always liked computers even though I had a hard time and remembered how my mom would be very patient with me and showed me how to use them with enough knowledge as to not come out as an idiot to others. I was a 2 finger typist as well.

    Fast forward to 2018, I am 27 years old, work as one of the only 2 developers at the college where I am employed and I am regarded as one of the best developers in the area(to be fair there aren't that many of us) and I graduated with a degree in computer science, top of my class as well.

    Have some patience and faith brother, the dude might become good with a good mentor(this could be you) and he will never forget the dude that was patient
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    @AleCx04 but if you shrug him off and he still becomes a developer he will look back at your attitude with resentment.

    We can help others grow with a positive attitude and the right ideas if we are patient and make them see the way.

    :D all the best man, it takes patience and understanding
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    @AleCx04 I'm not saying he's stupid because he doesn't know programming. I'm saying he's stupid because of the stupid shit he does ALL THE TIME.

    It is a daily struggle to keep my cool with this guy, I kid you not (a couple of times I've failed to already). He is one of the dumbest people I've met in my life and I'm still amazed that he even got the job in the first place, but it's a startup and we're desperate so I can kind of believe it.

    This guy makes toothpaste look smart.

    Anyhow I hear what you're saying and there's still a part of me that is saying "give him a chance", but the truth is I don't hold out much hope for him. If he can make it through a CS degree alive I'll be impressed, but honestly it would only raise more questions.

    At the end of the day it's not like I can tell him to drop out because he's too stupid, so I just have to suffer through him and watch it play out.
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    @devios1 i feel you my dude. I do. Best of luck!
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    @devios1 I have classmate who is like that and what annoys me most about him is that he is sooooo stupid he thinks he's a genius and it pisses me off all the fucking time.
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    What did you do?
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    @GreenGirl Well I still work with him but the topic hasn’t come up in a while so I’m not actually sure if he still wants to learn programming or not.

    I always try to be supportive if I can, but I would not personally trust any code written by this guy, lol. At least not until he has a lot more practice doing it. Luckily he’s still just sales here. 😛
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    @devios1 Yeah, the whole 'debugging' is pointless thing he said is a real issue. Good luck.

    Love your blog / rants btw. :)
  • 1
    @GreenGirl Thanks! And welcome to devRant 🙂
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