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That's a good story, but it's about problem solving (informed by physics), not programming as such. Still cool, though.

I suppose it came to mind because to me it felt exactly like debugging.

Oh man, yeah. Debugging skills are totally real-life. Back when my son had an allergy/kidney problem (which he still has, but his labs have been normal twice now, fingers crossed) I always had the feeling I was debugging my child.

Definitely. I'd bet a lot of good mechanics would have the knack for debugging, too, if they learned the programming stuff. (The bike shop mechanics I've known certainly have the mindset.)

Problem solving is more general than programming, that's all. I'm all for sharing good problem-solving strategies, but focusing on programming is a bit narrow. (I get a lot of inspiration from House and Berton Roueché's writing, personally, but I'm a medical history / epidemiology geek.)

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