Wizard Book Study Group

Coders Only have started a study group whose purpose is to study the Wizard book.

The Wizard Book, or Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs, a.k.a SICP is the book that is used for teaching CS at Berkeley and Stanford Universities. It’s a challenging read, introducing many fundamental concepts, and not for the faint of heart. It’s one of these rare books where the reviews on Amazon are either 5 or one star. Love it or hate it.

Here is an excerpt of the preface which we find particularly arresting:

First, we want to establish the idea that a computer language is not just a way of getting a computer to perform operations but rather that it is a novel formal medium for expressing ideas about methodology.

Thus, programs must be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute.

Second, we believe that the essential material to be addressed by a subject at this level is not the syntax of particular programming-language constructs, nor clever algorithms for computing particular functions efficiently, nor even the mathematical analysis of algorithms and the foundations of computing, but rather the techniques used to control the intellectual complexity of large software systems.

There is a plethora of free information available for the study of the book, and we’ve decided to follow Brian Harvey’s SICP lectures as suggested by https://teachyourselfcs.com.

Each member studies the book individually, but we meet up every three weeks to review our progress and help each other out. Some members cannot join online because of time zone issues, but we have an active chat on discord.

Coders Only provides the infrastructure for our repo https://git.sr.ht/~codersonly/wizard-book-study and also for the triweekly online meetups.

If you hurry up you can catch up still, do join us!

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