Jul 14 2012

Learning to Code, Part 5

Tag:Tag , Cyn @ 23:40

I just can’t stay away from CodeAcademy. I went back and finished the Web Fundamentals course. I had been waiting because there’s JavaScript involved in the last few assignments, but it turns out I was able to do those without finishing the JavaScript courses. I feel all warm and fuzzy now.

It’s good that I have that feeling about something, because I certainly don’t feel that way about the library book I checked out. JavaScript in Easy Steps by Mike McGrath is useless. Yes, the steps are easy, if you just want to type. There’s almost no explanation of anything, so either I already know the material, or I can’t learn from it. Being told, “Type this in. This is what the result will be,” without any source code to view (the free downloads web site is only available to people in the U.K.) and no troubleshooting tips is silly. Just a screenshot of what the finished code should look like would be a good idea, because the author’s instructions aren’t always so clear, or even sequential. I’m glad I didn’t spend money for this book.

So I’ll be waiting for my friend’s explanation, and wishing all the lessons at CodeAcademy were as well-written as the early JavaScript ones.

Jul 09 2012

Learning to Code, Part 2

Tag:Tag , , Cyn @ 19:14

I’m still exploring CodeAcademy, which has proven to be a very interesting site.

I made it through their JavaScript Fundamentals and found that I wanted to know more, so I started on their Code Year project, which picks up right after that with JavaScript Conditionals. Unfortunately, I seem to have hit a buggy lesson on the third section of that area and am waiting for a response from their people as to why my code is working and returning a correct answer but their automated system still says, “Oops! Try again.” From their Q&A forum, it seems that quite a few people have had trouble with that lesson.

So I decided to regroup and see what else they offer. I mentioned in the earlier post that I needed to update my HTML skills, so I moved on to that part of the site. I certainly learned to create web pages before CSS days, so I needed to learn a lot more about that, too, and I am. I’ve gotten through the HTML portion and the first CSS section, and I don’t see any of that as wasted time.

At this point I would happily recommend CodeAcademy to anyone who wants to learn the basics of creating a web site. I feel that I’m learning the basics of programming, but I’m not far enough along to opine about that bit yet. We’ll see whether or not that issue is resolved in a timely manner, first.

There are certainly other alternatives, but that’s what I’ve learned in the last 24 hours.