I encoutered the following sentence while reading a computer language book and just wondered the exact meaning of the following sentence (because I'm not a English native speaker):

This book starts with an introductory chapter that covers just enough material to get you programming right from the start.

Does "programming right from the start" mean 1) programming correctly, from the start or 2) programming, just from the start?

  • 1
    right from the start is a very well-established intensified collocation (from the very beginning), so it's extremely unlikely a native speaker would use that form of words if he specifically intended the sense of [doing something] correctly from the start. Commented Jan 10, 2023 at 13:41
  • Thanks for the answer. It really helped.
    – M. Kim
    Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 0:36

1 Answer 1


It could be read in both ways, but my initial and preferred reading is

to get you programming (right from the start)

with "right" just acting as an intensifier, meaning "from the very start". It means that you will be able to write simple programs immediately.

  • 2
    I agree. I don't think "programming right" would be a common combination of verb and adverb - it isn't very clear what it means, and "programming correctly" or "programming well" would be more formal and better suited for an instructional book. So "right from the start" makes more sense.
    – Stuart F
    Commented Jan 10, 2023 at 13:16
  • Thanks for the answer. It really helped.
    – M. Kim
    Commented Jan 17, 2023 at 0:37

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