Young Writers Society



Sunny and the Syntax Errors of Doom: Chapter 9.2

by Spearmint


Sunny stared at the errors and groped for her backpack. Her fingers were trembling slightly, despite her efforts to keep them steady, but she managed to get the pack open. Sunny pulled out the reference manual and hefted it in her hands. Putting on a brave face, she said, "Alright. Which one of you wants to get conked out first?"

She surveyed the errors around her. They stood there, motionless except for the streams of red text that flowed around them. Sunny took a deep breath, then picked one at random and pulled the book backwards, readying for a good solid strike to the face. But suddenly, she saw a glimmer of gold from the helmet of red text that was covering the error she was targeting. Sunny narrowed her eyes. "So you have gold laser weapons? Is that it?"

Something about the glimmer made her pause, though. It didn't feel threatening, even as it grew larger. Sunny readied the reference manual as a shield, just in case.

But the light was not, in fact, some kind of deadly laser. On the contrary, it enlarged into a line of text– or rather, code. Sunny blinked at it.

System.out.println("Hello, world!")

Sunny's arms dropped, and she clutched the manual like a teddy bear instead as she examined the line. She wasn't quite sure what it was, but something struck her as being off. "Shouldn't there be a semicolon at the end there?"

With her finger, Sunny cautiously reached out to draw on a semicolon. And– to her surprise– her finger left glowing lines in the air in the form of a slightly-misshapen semicolon. Then the wobbly punctuation mark flashed and became as neat as if it were typed, just like the rest of the line of code.

System.out.println("Hello, world!");

As Sunny watched with wide eyes, the line of code grew brighter, then disappeared in a flash. And the error behind it dissolved into pieces of red text. A couple pieces of text snaked into the reference manual in Sunny's arms, but the majority seeped out into the rest of the kitchen, seemingly searching for a way out.

Sunny stepped backwards. There was no sign of the error that had been there before. "So…" she stopped, trying to work out what had just happened. "Was that the error of missing semicolons, or something? I think I read that small errors like that were called syntax errors." Sunny patted the reference manual absently. "Do I just need to fix all of you errors?" She surveyed the remaining errors with new eyes.

Behind her, Jasper muttered something, then typed furiously. Robert was unnervingly silent. Sunny bit her lip; she'd have to do this fast, then. Assuming she could replicate whatever "this" had been.

"Okay. Sunny against the syntax errors of doom. I got this." Sunny turned her attention to the next error and breathed a sigh of relief when she spotted the glimmer again. This time, it enlarged into a larger piece of code.

int x = 16;

if (x = 19) {

    System.out.println("x is 19");

} else {

    System.out.println("x is not 19");

}

"Semicolons are all there, and it looks like x is initialized correctly," Sunny murmured under her breath. "Then the if statement– wait. A single equal sign is used for setting the values of variables, right? I'm pretty sure comparison uses something different…" Sunny squeezed another equal sign into the parentheses.

int x = 16;

if (x == 19) {

    System.out.println("x is 19");

} else {

    System.out.println("x is not 19");

}

The text flashed golden and disappeared again, and the error it was connected to unraveled as well. Sunny had to stop herself from punching the air and crying out, "Yes!" She darted a quick glance back over the counter at Jasper. He seemed pretty absorbed in tampering with Robert's code, but a shout would probably alert him. So Sunny settled for a large grin and a mental pat on the back.

Sunny debugged the next few errors in the same way. A couple of them were obvious, but for others, she had to remember what she'd learned, or quickly flip through the manual. (Maybe, just maybe, Robert was right; her brain and information could be just as effective as a weapon.) But just when the other errors had started to shift nervously away from Sunny and free up some space around her, she encountered an error involving methods.

public static boolean isEven(num) {

    System.out.println(num%2 == 0);

}

Sunny read through the code once. Then twice. Then she took a breath and tried to talk through it, word-by-word, trying not to let her confusion in the café shake her. "So, Robert said I didn't need to worry about ‘public' or ‘static.' So then there's ‘boolean.' That– that means the method returns a boolean, right? Okay, so does it?" Sunny glanced at the code again. "Looks like it just prints. So do I…?" Sunny changed the print statement to a return statement.

public static boolean isEven(num) {

    return (num%2 == 0);

}

She waited for the words to flash and disappear, but nothing happened. Sunny let out a shaky breath. Had she done something wrong? Should she have changed "boolean" to "void" instead? But no, boolean should've been fine if a boolean was returned– which one was. num%2 == 0 looked like it could've been a condition for an if statement, so it was a boolean. Sunny combed through the code again. "‘isEven' seems like a good, clear name. Then ‘num'...?"

Sunny tried to think back to the examples that Robert had given her before. Then it hit her. "The type! It's missing the ‘int.'"

public static boolean isEven(int num) {

    return (num%2 == 0);

}

This time, the code glowed and disappeared. Sunny breathed a sigh of relief. Including two errors had been tricky. What did that error even represent, then? Just any errors within methods? Quickly, Sunny dismissed the distracting question and attacked the two remaining errors with renewed vigor.

Finally, Sunny had cleared a path out of the kitchen area. She kept a good grip on the manual as she ran back out to the main area of the fast-food building, the thrill of solving the errors still buzzing in her.

"You there!" she declared imperiously, pointing a righteous finger at Jasper. Jasper jolted, then turned around and glared at her.

"I'm working on a solutio–"

Sunny used her non-pointing hand to heft the reference manual threateningly. "I will gladly chuck this book at your head if you don't unhand Robert immediately." A dangerous grin spread over her face.


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Tue Jan 24, 2023 1:26 pm
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Liminality wrote a review...



Hi again mint! Lim here with a short review.

General Impressions

Sunny was very impressive this chapter! I love it when a protagonist overcomes challenges in the heat of conflict. Her first line here made me smile, and I also loved the ending. It makes me think: yay Robert’s getting rescued, probably! There’s a good deal of code in this chapter and it looks like all the stuff from the previous chapters is coming into play with these errors.
I feel kind of conflicted about the errors. I like that all the coding is coming into use, since after all that’s a central appeal of the story’s premise. I do feel like they seemed more dangerous/ actively harmful earlier on though.

Glows – What I liked

I like the character consistency with Sunny’s confidence. Even though you’ve shown she’s scared here with the fingers trembling description, she still actively tries to solve the problem and has some quips to go with it. It’s also a nice bit of character development that she’s starting to see Robert’s point about the mind being more important than the sword.

I also thought the part where Sunny realizes she needs to fix the errors and then the story cuts to Jasper typing was a good way to build tension. It felt like there was a timer ticking on Sunny’s ‘new’ task.

I like the mention of her leaving the “kitchen area” because that helps me reorient where she is in the In-and-Out.

Grows – Ideas to consider

I noticed the errors / Jasper’s minions have a slightly abstract design. I know they look like floating red text, but are they humanoid? I think the errors that ‘kidnapped’ Sunny and Robert from the café had arms – do these ones also have arms?

she saw a glimmer of gold from the helmet of red text that was covering the error she was targeting.

I found it a bit hard to read and visualise what’s being described here. So the helmet is made of red text, and not the error. Or is it both?

Additionally, I kind of wonder why Jasper didn’t give his minions weapons to defend themselves with. Sunny seems to dismantle them without resistance here, whereas they were established as a threat in the previous part.

Overall

I still thought Sunny’s win here felt like an epic moment. My main suggestion would be to have a look at how the errors are being depicted. Otherwise, I liked the pacing and the actiony feel of the chapter. I guess the final showdown between Sunny and Jasper is coming up soon. I wonder what kind of code he’s going to use?

Hope this helps – let me know if you’d like more feedback on something specific!
-Lim




Spearmint says...


Thanks for the thoughtful review, Lim!! ^-^
Sunny was very impressive this chapter!

Haha, Sunny agrees with you and thanks you very much for the compliment! xD
I feel kind of conflicted about the errors. I like that all the coding is coming into use, since after all that%u2019s a central appeal of the story%u2019s premise. I do feel like they seemed more dangerous/ actively harmful earlier on though.

Yeah... I should probably add some part about the errors fighting back, huh? Or make it a little more difficult for Sunny, at least. >.>
My main suggestion would be to have a look at how the errors are being depicted.

Right now, I'm imagining them as humanoid blobs made of swirling red text. xD They could definitely use some refinement and more description... Hmm. I'll think on that; thanks for bringing it up! :]

Hope you have a fabulous day/night! Always nice to get a review from you, Lim. <3



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Fri Jan 20, 2023 9:23 pm
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KateHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

First Impression: Ahh this is a wonderful fightback by Sunny. This is perfect way to get out of this situation and I love it. Its very much on brand for what we've seen so far and it makes everything we've learnt on our way to this place feel just that little bit more valuable to know that it was all used in this dire situation.

Anyway let's get right to it,

Sunny stared at the errors and groped for her backpack. Her fingers were trembling slightly, despite her efforts to keep them steady, but she managed to get the pack open. Sunny pulled out the reference manual and hefted it in her hands. Putting on a brave face, she said, "Alright. Which one of you wants to get conked out first?"

She surveyed the errors around her. They stood there, motionless except for the streams of red text that flowed around them. Sunny took a deep breath, then picked one at random and pulled the book backwards, readying for a good solid strike to the face. But suddenly, she saw a glimmer of gold from the helmet of red text that was covering the error she was targeting. Sunny narrowed her eyes. "So you have gold laser weapons? Is that it?"


Go Sunny!! Smack those things. Although it looks like just maybe she isn't going to simply go for the all out attack here from the looks of things. That pause is clearly for some important reason from the looks of things.

Something about the glimmer made her pause, though. It didn't feel threatening, even as it grew larger. Sunny readied the reference manual as a shield, just in case.

But the light was not, in fact, some kind of deadly laser. On the contrary, it enlarged into a line of text– or rather, code. Sunny blinked at it.

System.out.println("Hello, world!")


Well that's a relief. I was worried there was going to be some form of attack here but instead it looks like its just some sort code, one that's probably broken given that these are in fact errors that we're dealing with. Hopefully this isn't some decoy move for another attack to follow.

Sunny's arms dropped, and she clutched the manual like a teddy bear instead as she examined the line. She wasn't quite sure what it was, but something struck her as being off. "Shouldn't there be a semicolon at the end there?"

With her finger, Sunny cautiously reached out to draw on a semicolon. And– to her surprise– her finger left glowing lines in the air in the form of a slightly-misshapen semicolon. Then the wobbly punctuation mark flashed and became as neat as if it were typed, just like the rest of the line of code.

System.out.println("Hello, world!");


Oooooh this is lovely. It was in fact broken code, that I totally missed whoops and Sunny is reaching out to do what she appears to have been destined to do here. This is quite lovely to see. It looks like Sunny can maybe try and fix these things with a tactic that's a bit different to just swinging that book.

As Sunny watched with wide eyes, the line of code grew brighter, then disappeared in a flash. And the error behind it dissolved into pieces of red text. A couple pieces of text snaked into the reference manual in Sunny's arms, but the majority seeped out into the rest of the kitchen, seemingly searching for a way out.

Sunny stepped backwards. There was no sign of the error that had been there before. "So…" she stopped, trying to work out what had just happened. "Was that the error of missing semicolons, or something? I think I read that small errors like that were called syntax errors." Sunny patted the reference manual absently. "Do I just need to fix all of you errors?" She surveyed the remaining errors with new eyes.


OOooh that's a great idea Sunny. It definitely is the only logical conclusion to go for at the moment an certainly based on the alternative its very much worth a shot. The evidence at the moment is being supportive too.

Behind her, Jasper muttered something, then typed furiously. Robert was unnervingly silent. Sunny bit her lip; she'd have to do this fast, then. Assuming she could replicate whatever "this" had been.

"Okay. Sunny against the syntax errors of doom. I got this." Sunny turned her attention to the next error and breathed a sigh of relief when she spotted the glimmer again. This time, it enlarged into a larger piece of code.


Well it looks like not all of these are going to be equally easy to solve. It does make sense if Sunny is going to have to combat each and every possible error here. Judging from the way that text flew around it looks like Sunny here is just repairing and freeing errors here at least to some degree.

"Semicolons are all there, and it looks like x is initialized correctly," Sunny murmured under her breath. "Then the if statement– wait. A single equal sign is used for setting the values of variables, right? I'm pretty sure comparison uses something different…" Sunny squeezed another equal sign into the parentheses.


Ahh that's another incredibly easy to one miss there although I caught it this time woo. Sunny is making some good progress from the looks of things at least on the somewhat straightforward looking errors. Hopefully Sunny can remember what Robert taught on the more complicated things.

The text flashed golden and disappeared again, and the error it was connected to unraveled as well. Sunny had to stop herself from punching the air and crying out, "Yes!" She darted a quick glance back over the counter at Jasper. He seemed pretty absorbed in tampering with Robert's code, but a shout would probably alert him. So Sunny settled for a large grin and a mental pat on the back.

Sunny debugged the next few errors in the same way. A couple of them were obvious, but for others, she had to remember what she'd learned, or quickly flip through the manual. (Maybe, just maybe, Robert was right; her brain and information could be just as effective as a weapon.) But just when the other errors had started to shift nervously away from Sunny and free up some space around her, she encountered an error involving methods.


Ooooh wooo. Go Sunny Go! I still maintain that a sword made out code would've been a great idea but this brain power plan has definitely worked out well and as a hero solving problems instead of attacking them with a sword is definitely the more heroic way to go. I adore how well Sunny is adapting here and using the knowledge she has although it looks like just maybe we've run into one of those harder problems now.

Sunny read through the code once. Then twice. Then she took a breath and tried to talk through it, word-by-word, trying not to let her confusion in the café shake her. "So, Robert said I didn't need to worry about ‘public' or ‘static.' So then there's ‘boolean.' That– that means the method returns a boolean, right? Okay, so does it?" Sunny glanced at the code again. "Looks like it just prints. So do I…?" Sunny changed the print statement to a return statement.


Oh dear that does look like we're barreling towards perhaps Sunny's first mistake here. Hopefully all it does is cause another error that ultimately Sunny can just fix again and not some other alarm or something that will end up causing mayhem here.

She waited for the words to flash and disappear, but nothing happened. Sunny let out a shaky breath. Had she done something wrong? Should she have changed "boolean" to "void" instead? But no, boolean should've been fine if a boolean was returned– which one was. num%2 == 0 looked like it could've been a condition for an if statement, so it was a boolean. Sunny combed through the code again. "‘isEven' seems like a good, clear name. Then ‘num'...?"

Sunny tried to think back to the examples that Robert had given her before. Then it hit her. "The type! It's missing the ‘int.'"


Wooo! It does not cause a horrible mishap and bonus points Sunny managed to remember how to fix it. This is definitely the most that I have cheered for someone fixing an error in a code xD.

This time, the code glowed and disappeared. Sunny breathed a sigh of relief. Including two errors had been tricky. What did that error even represent, then? Just any errors within methods? Quickly, Sunny dismissed the distracting question and attacked the two remaining errors with renewed vigor.

Finally, Sunny had cleared a path out of the kitchen area. She kept a good grip on the manual as she ran back out to the main area of the fast-food building, the thrill of solving the errors still buzzing in her.


Well sometimes you do end up with multiple errors and from the looks of things those weren't all just individual errors. It seems maybe those aren't all the errors that flew there but something constructed from the errors to act as soldiers. At any rate Sunny is free and I'm loving this. Let's see what she manages to pull off here.

"You there!" she declared imperiously, pointing a righteous finger at Jasper. Jasper jolted, then turned around and glared at her.

"I'm working on a solutio–"

Sunny used her non-pointing hand to heft the reference manual threateningly. "I will gladly chuck this book at your head if you don't unhand Robert immediately." A dangerous grin spread over her face.


Ahh beautiful. That's the perfect spot to end on for this chapter and I adore that Sunny has her priorities straight about exactly what to attack Jasper with. She definitely should smack that one with the book even if Robert is freed because one doesn't do that to Robert without being smacked.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

Overall: Overall this is the perfect conclusion to that chapter and we go from terror to just pure excitement now to see how well Sunny is going to smack up this one for daring to do that to Robert. I have a feeling maybe there's a twist left in this tale and its not so straightforward, but there is hope now.

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Kate




Spearmint says...


Thanks for the great review, Kate!! ^-^
Its very much on brand for what we've seen so far and it makes everything we've learnt on our way to this place feel just that little bit more valuable to know that it was all used in this dire situation.

Yes!! I'm glad you picked up on that!
It looks like Sunny can maybe try and fix these things with a tactic that's a bit different to just swinging that book.

Mhmm xD
She definitely should smack that one with the book even if Robert is freed because one doesn't do that to Robert without being smacked.

XDD

Thanks again for the fun comments, and I hope you have a wonderful day/night! <3



KateHardy says...


You're Welcome <3



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Mon Jan 09, 2023 7:50 pm
Ann0MJ says...



This is nice.




Spearmint says...


Thanks! :D Also, welcome to YWS! ^^
Looks like you've already found the literary comment option, but did you know you can leave reviews too, if you have deeper thoughts or suggestions for the work? (You can get points and stars for reviewing.) Plus, YWS has a thriving roleplay section, fun Randomosity threads, and a wonderful community <3 Feel free to ask me or another mod (anyone with a green username) if you have any questions, and I hope you'll like it here! :]




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She conquered her demons and wore her scars like wings.
— Atticus