The modern programmer: 10 must-read articles from this year

From SDKs to command-line utilities and more, this list offers plenty of insight for today's programmers.
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Learning to program

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Programming is about languages, of course, but also much more. Along with good languages, programmers need toolsets to support coding: software development kits (SDKs), command-line utilities for source-code inspection and even editing, package managers, repositories targeted at developers, and so on. The ten articles listed below cover programming in this broad sense.

Several articles address languages head-on. Pony is a new language that, like Clojure and Rust, tries to move beyond traditional type security to provide memory security as well. JavaScript, whose dialects and frameworks seem to multiply faster than Fibonacci rabbits, has five new open source offerings for data mining (a topic as hot as any in modern programming).

Augmented reality, anyone? Check out the recent SDKs in this area. Various authors weigh in on the languages they use on and off the job, and another focuses on the facts of life in a modern programming shop: More than one programming language is at work here. There’s an article about sharpening your Git skills and another about getting better package management for Python.

How about a fresh look at the familiar less command-line utility? Even the man pages concede that less does more than more.

If you’re a programmer, this top-ten list offers something—and likely more than one thing—to stir your interest. Enjoy.

Top 10 stories for the modern programmer

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I'm an academic in computer science (College of Computing and Digital Media, DePaul University) with wide experience in software development, mostly in production planning and scheduling (steel industry) and product configuration (truck and bus manufacturing). Details on books and other publications are available at

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