Backbytes: Everyone should learn to code? Don't be stupid, says Torvalds

By Backbytes
10 Jun 2014 View Comments

The average human being is incredibly ego-centric, and if it weren't for the delusions of self-importance that arise from this, perhaps the suicide rate would be higher.

Hence, people who spend their lives shuffling paper around the Ministry for Paperclips invariably believe that paper, paperclips and all the filing they do is vitally important work. Likewise, gym instructors, diversity coordinators, lollypop people - even journalists.

Further reading

So when a coder like Linus Torvalds says that, seriously, not everyone needs to learn to code, not only is that a sign of a really together individual, but that "those that be" really ought to listen.

Torvalds argues that coding just isn't in the same league of importance as reading, writing and knowing your times tables; and, while an exposure to coding at school is useful - the child may realise an aptitude for it - it really isn't going to be an essential skill that everyone needs to know.

Thank goodness for that.

After all, millions of lorry drivers get by without being intimately familiar with the production process for diesel or care how a combustion engine works, so why should everyone be forced to learn Forth and Pascal at school - in addition to all the essential drama, sociology, citizenship and other lessons kids just can't do without?

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