How Programming Affects Your Brain: 3 Big Truths According to Science

It’s true: programmers think differently than everyone else.

Not to say that programmers are necessarily smarter, more logical, or more rational than everyone else, as is commonly said. But scientists have recently started studying the brains of programmers and have come to some interesting conclusions.Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science

Just as artistry can shape your mind in various ways, programming also impacts how you think—perhaps in ways you may not have expected.

1. Coding Shapes Your Mental Models

Does it matter which programming language you learn first? Yes!

This seems a bit unfair, doesn’t it? After all, most of us get our first taste of programming in school, and we don’t get to choose which language gets thrust upon us. I started with C. Those older than me likely started with FORTRAN, COBOL, or BASIC. As for you newer folks? You likely started on Java or Python.Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science Computer Science

No doubt about it: the design of a programming language shapes how you think. Edsger Dijkstra, one of history’s most influential computer scientists, knew this when he said:

“The tools we use have a profound (and devious) influence on our thinking habits, and, therefore, on our thinking abilities.”

He then went on to say:

“The use of COBOL cripples the mind; its teaching should, therefore, be regarded as a criminal offence.”

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