2020-09-15 Procedural is simple

Years ago, I wrote a couple of games using the curses library bindings for Python. Later, I used that knowledge to write a quick start guide that’s still one of the most popular across my sites.

More recently, being between projects and not in the mood for much else, I finally got around to learning how it’s done in C. Turns out, it’s a lot simpler than in Python for the ABCs, and comparable at worst for advanced uses.

How come? In their drive to make everything fancy and by-the-book, Python programmers forgot that the typical curses program isn’t exactly a clone of the Turbo Pascal IDE. More like a glorified menu that the user can pick from by pressing a number key. It could be done in shell script, really, with the tput utility, and in fact it often is.

That’s the problem with object-oriented programming, you see. Practicality also means being able to tell when using an industrial power drill is overkill, and you’re better off drilling holes with an ice pick.