You’re just learning about computers. Let’s say you’re a kid. I consider my son a late bloomer as far as his interest in the inner workings of software. He’s 11. Java was too much for him. So I tried Logo to teach the basics. Anything where you get a sense of accomplishment from actually making your program work and do something can lead to success.
From what I hear, I get the sense from RPG programmers that there is no such early sense of accomplishment when they start tackling Java. Brian Farn has written a great article about how RPG could be given more vitality.
Who would choose RPG as a language if they were coming directly out of school? Or how about even younger people choosing a similar language? We’ve got curricula in various institutions to show how RPG is actually a viable language to learn. There are jobs in RPG mainly because there are many RPG programmers reaching retirement age and their programs have a lot longer way to go — and need to be maintained. In a future entry, I’ll talk about the work I do with Seneca College, where they teach RPG and System i technologies to their students.