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Stories like these are the ones that inspire me the most. People using technology in a way that helps them in their everyday lives, or in a hobbyist fashion. I feel like many of the things I pick-up at work are out of career necessity: the latest framework, bits of an up and coming language that is going to be "the future", semi fluency in a stack so I can aid in a project,I enjoy it, but I don't enjoy it like in the same way I once did.

Probably my favorite programming memory was teaching myself Java as a teenager and building games for my friends and I to play. No responsibility, if they worked...great, if not oh well. It was exhilarating. I do not think programming will ever become a lingua franca, as stated in other places here. I think hobbyist programmers may pop up more and more,or people who know enough to build small tools for themselves (not to scale) and I don't think that's a bad thing.

As one of those hobbyists, I can say that the thing I wish most for was an easier way of "getting started". I mostly hack around in python, or arduino c, but I really wish that it was easier to write a script and actually give it to someone else, and actually have it run.

The feature I like most about excel, is that it is practically ubiquitous. If I give someone else an excel toy workbook that does something, they can run it without needing to "manage the environment". If I write something in Python/numpy/pandas/Jupyter, it is actually pretty difficult to make it useful to anyone. Portability just makes the whole hobby programming thing much more fun.

Depending on what you're doing, a webapp is a great way to deal with the portability issue

yeah, I hear that, and I also know in my heart that it's right, but I have no business running access control/distributing my code/or hosting it for public consumption. Mostly a "hey, look at this data analysis" or "this is a good way to do this process" kind of things. emailing someone a file was a pretty good workflow for the low-volume script problem. I wish I could just get a python sandbox for GitHub and have them run it all for me.

Jupyter notebooks could be a way to do what you want: https://jupyter.org/try

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