Here's a challenge for the dev community. 😀

How would you define programming in as fewer words as possible?

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28 answers

Writing instructions for a computer.

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101 words

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I think @theonlyrealtodd has put it in a very succinct way — Programming is just moving data around to solve problems.

I have a slightly different way to express the same thing, though!

Programming is the process of creating "black boxes" which accept an input, and return an output.

As a programmer you write programs ... design black boxes, with specified rules to convert given inputs into specific outputs!

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Moving data around and operating on it to solve problems.

EDIT: Technically, programming is only "moving data around to solve problems."

This has been proven by Stephen Dolan, PhD: cl.cam.ac.uk/~sd601/papers/mov.pdf and put into actual application by Christopher Domas from Batelle Memorial Research Institute: youtube.com/watch?v=HlUe0TUHOIc Computers actually just move data around.

EDIT 2: Btw, That Chris Domas talk is absolutely amazing and I HIGHLY recommend everyone check it out... he's definitely one of the smartest, if not the smartest computer scientists on the earth right now.

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Programming is to describe/formulate ways to solve/do specific tasks and/or achieve certain goals and/or implement certain behaviours.

Usually done in a formal language... but that's a detail :P we can program just by speaking to each other and give each other instructions.

So programming could be seen as a form of communication to pass on information, but this can leads to more abstract theories ;D ...

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Programming: getting an extra wish from a djinn without spending an eternity in the lamp.

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Since most things can be expressed as a function, programming is the art of embedding chain of functions in human readable format that machines can compile and execute for them:

(..h(g(f(input)))..) = output

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