2

I just came out of school where, for the most part, I coded console apps in C++, and a few tiered apps in Java and .NET.

My program seemed geared toward producing line of business software: websites and crud apps that enhance business process, and as far as I can tell most jobs out there actually involve producing this type of software.

But as someone who is really getting into the nitty gritty of code I'm coming to realize how little I know about so much software that's out there. For instance:

  • How does one develop an operating system and other system software?
  • What is the make up of programs which run things like appliances, remote controls, and so on?
  • How could I get my hands on this type of code?

And so on.

So the interest I have is a very broad one at this time, and I wonder how I can leverage programmers.exchange to delve into new and uncharted territory that I'm never likely to see in a professional capacity?

edit: I understand that these questions are too broad. That's the problem. I wonder how I could approach these types of subjects in a way that's not too broad and fits site criteria?

  • 1
    I think you should read a book on operating systems design (I have Operating Systems by William Stallings which is really good but there are many others), then ask here specific questions on things you don't understand. This will also help you a lot with user-space development. After that, you should try to understand the inner workings of the operating systems you're using. For practical development questions, OSDev wiki and Google will be your friends. – fbbdev Jun 8 '15 at 10:11
2

Just based on your examples, I don't think that these types of questions would be a good fit here. Programmers, and Stack Exchange in general, work best when you're trying to solve a specific problem and don't know what to do. The Q&A portions of the site don't really support teaching or broad questions well, and broad, discussion-based, and/or opinion-based questions tend to be discouraged.

However, there is a chat mechanism that could be useful. The Programmers chat room, The Whiteboard, tends to be active. The level of activity varies, but there are quite a few regulars. You can talk about these broader subjects there. Other sites may have active chat rooms as well, for various topics.


How does one develop an operating system and other system software?

This would likely be closed as too broad. There are entire books and courses on these subjects. If you were reading a book and had a specific question that wasn't made clear in the book or after researching other sources first, that may be on-topic, assuming it was focused enough.

What is the make up of programs which run things like appliances, remote controls, and so on?

Again, this would likely be closed as too broad. There's just a wide variety of examples. We do have a history of similar questions being acceptable, but I suspect it would have to be something specific and noteworthy. There's a difference between asking about the software that runs in a random make and model of a commercial product and things like the Curiosity rover or space shuttle. It also depends on if we can reasonable be expected to be familiar with the internals of the software or have access to publications that discuss it to quote and reference.

How could I get my hands on this type of code?

This would be closed as off-topic. This would be one of the "resource request" questions that we currently have a custom close reason for. Searching is the best solution. Since you're looking for open source code, searching something like GitHub would be more efficient than asking a whole bunch of people to effectively do the same thing. The answers that would be generated also wouldn't meet our quality guidelines - they would essentially be links to repositories and maybe brief descriptions of the project, and how hows and whys for solving your problem.

  • 1
    Yea, I understand that these questions are too broad. That's why I'm asking this question. How could I approach these types of subjects in a way that's not too broad and fits site criteria? – Canadian Coder Jun 7 '15 at 2:16
  • @CanadianCoder That may be hard. The third one is never going to be on-topic, since resource requests are specifically off-topic. For the others, you need to just narrow the scope to a specific problem. A general rule of thumb is that if you don't have a specific problem that you're trying to solve (or a problem that you've solved already), it's probably not a good fit. – Thomas Owens Jun 7 '15 at 2:18
  • 1
    So would you say these types of topics are best studied with thorough googling? – Canadian Coder Jun 7 '15 at 2:19
  • 2
    @CanadianCoder Asking a question here should almost never be the first thing you do. In our tips for asking a good question, the first thing that it says is to "search, and research". Depending on what's appropriate, try to solve the problem yourself, look in books, search the Internet, search specific Stack Exchange sites. The other tips may be helpful to you, as well. – Thomas Owens Jun 7 '15 at 2:22
  • 1
    Backing up Thomas's point about operating systems: I have now taken two classes, four semester hours each (B.S. and M.S.) on the topic of operating systems. They taught concepts, but there was no time for much in the way of hands-on training. It is good for background, but nowhere near enough to learn the topic in its entirety. In fact it would probably have taken my entire graduate education to cover the topic, and even then, I am sure something would have been left out. That is far too broad to fit in one of these text boxes. – user22815 Jun 9 '15 at 0:23

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .