The purpose of this lab is to get you to go into the lab, write a very simple program, run it and meet a TA.


Your program must print a greeting and then print a short song or poem of your choosing. My output looks like this:

Hello fabulous TA!

My wife wrote this limerick about me:

 To marry a man such as you
 would be like marrying into a zoo,
 Your face is too square,
 Your sense of humor too rare,

 and the smell of your body, p u!

Using Eclipse

You may find it difficult to use Eclipse, the java programming environment we will be using this semester. Eclipse is used by most Java programmers. It is a sophisticated tool with many features that will (eventually) make your life easier. Unfortunately, at the beginning, it can be overwhelming.

If you are brand new to Eclipse, it is strongly recommended that you follow the guide to making a small project in Eclipse. If you are going to work on your own computer, download “Eclipse IDE for Java Developers” from the Eclipse website.

Think before programming

For most students new to programming the biggest problem here will be getting over their own inertia, getting into the lab and trying! I strongly encourage you to just do it, do not put this off. It is not hard.

Before you begin any programming project, including even this first one, I encourage you to think about the things your program deals with. We will add more things to consider later, but for now we will worry about just two, one of which is trivial.

  1. Inputs
  2. Outputs

In this case there are no Inputs, other than running the program itself. The Output is the sequence of text you are trying to produce. A sequence of steps is the most basic kind of programming.

In addition to thinking about the program itself, you might also want to consider the purpose of this lab. Remember that it is intended to get those of you that are entirely new to programming use to the fact that this is something you can do, simple programs are simple. Many of you are also new to the university environment. This lab is also intended to help you realize that there are many resources here which you should use to help you succeed. There is a computer lab with computers all set up for your use (1119 TMCB) and there are Teaching Assistants who can help you.

Getting Help

If you get stuck:

  1. First try to google your question. Chances are really good someone has had your problem before.
  2. Second ask the person sitting next to you. They'll feel good helping you and if they don't know you will learn together!
  3. As a last resort if you need help from a TA (and you are working in the lab), please use the help request queue:


The TA's love to help, but you will gain much more in learning how to solve your problems on your own!

I need more than this

Some of you have already done some programming. I still need you to get used to the computer labs, Eclipse, the TA's and the pass off process. If you want a little more to think about and 5% extra credit, think about the double quote symbol that appears in the hello java program I wrote in making a small project in Eclipse. What if I wanted a double quote symbol to appear in the output? Can I just put it in along with the other characters I want printed out? Try it, you will find that java does not like that! It uses the double quote symbol to identify the beginning and ending of text that is to be printed verbatim. You could put two single quotes next to each other, but that is not the same. I really want one (or more) double quote symbols. You can read ahead to find the answer, it is explained in chapter 2.

Pass-off procedure

When you have your program working, you will need to show it to a TA.

Put yourself in the help request queue to pass off: http://aml.cs.byu.edu/~kseppi/cs142help.html. (Disregard the stated number of people ahead of you…the number is incorrect.)

The TA will evaluate your code based on the following criteria:

  1. Did you print anything at all? (7 points)
  2. Did you print out text on separate lines in some reasonable way? (6 points)
  3. Did you format your code as shown in the book and in class, with separate lines and indenting. (6 points)
  4. Did you find your own poem! (1 point)

Extra credit: Did you find out how to print out a double quote and demonstrate it in your program? (1 point)

cs-142/fall-2010/labs/hello-ta.txt · Last modified: 2014/11/19 15:48 by ryancha
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