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A decade ago, in the year of our Lord 2013 — time flies! — I took on a challenge to learn seven languages in seven weeks. It was an interesting time because learning these languages meant seeking out projects to build with them, hitting roadblocks, fearing, failing, figuring things out, and finally… flying. The languages I chose were Prolog, Io, Haskell, Clojure, Elixir, Erlang, and Mercury. It was as yolo as yolo can get: no learning frameworks, no guides; just raw imagination, commitment, and grit. I could get through six of the seven weeks. Mercury, apparently, was too new at the time. After these six weeks, I began seeing programming as a craft which must be perfected; not just something to do. Obviously, what’s a melted mind to do besides consolidate and solidify? That’s what I did.

A decade later, Exercism.io announces a challenge to learn 12 languages through the 12 months in 2023. The sweet nostalgia! I obviously jumped on it and have already begun! The languages these time around are not as far-fetched as before: Vimscript, Clojure, Rust, Julia, Bash, Crystal, WebAssembly, Elixir, F#, Awk, Dart. As you can see, there are two familiar languages here: Clojure and Elixir. These were interesting languages. I’ll be refreshing my memory here. The other two familiars are Rust and Crystal — I may just swap these out for more esoteric languages — I’ve worked with these, but they’re just interesting to write.

In this blog series, I’ll be compiling what I’ve learned from trying each of the languages. — starting with Vimscript.


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