Learning to code: How hard is it actually?

To say computers are outside of my comfort zone is an understatement.

To say computers are outside of my comfort zone is an understatement. Just ask me to download the latest Apple update and I will convulse at the mouth.

Though, as I sit notably on the south side of 30, it’s embarrassing to admit that I’m not in the know on a lot of things… like how you would go about making a website, an app, or changing my alarm to a song.  

Working in the media world, I am no stranger to the value of understanding code, and even, the limitations of not knowing it. But, it’s certainly overwhelming.

Where to start?

The secret is just that. You start.

I enrolled in a 12 week (aka three-month aka quarter of a year) coding course at Coder Factory Academy. And if I can do it, so can you.

Only one lesson deep, I already have two lessons for you:

  1. You should enrol in a face-to-face class.

Online tutorials aren’t for me. Ask me to watch a five-minute video about coding and you’ll find me playing charades with my cat.

Instead, I found a course that runs from 6pm – 9pm on Tuesday and Thursday.

The promise being that in three months I will know how to make a web app, and that I will have in fact made my own from scratch.

There are only ten people in my class, yet there are three teachers – and with those ratios it’s likely you’ll see me succeed even more than Richie in the last season of the Bachelor.

  1. You should learn Ruby on Rails.

Until last week, the only ‘Ruby’ I knew was either seen on your finger or dancing in a dark bar; but, as it turns out, Ruby on Rails is a coding language and framework that you can learn. Like learning French, Italian or Spanish, there are programming languages you can learn, like: Ruby, JavaScript, Python, and many more.

Ruby on Rails is the easiest technology stack for beginners to learn. Even the man who developed it wanted to invent a framework that was more simplistic and true to his word, learning Ruby Rails is a lot like learning how to write.

By the end of the first class, the three-wise-men had me typing code like a kindergartener writes their name almost illegibly, but with enthusiasm.  

I can now make a computer screen display the question, “What is your name?” and when you type in “Sam”, the clever thing displays, “Her name is Sam”.
Will my project be the million-dollar app idea of 2017? I think, no. But, in the same way you wouldn’t criticise a five year old for spelling “thank you mum” wrong, just let me live.

I am not one of those people that says they like exercise when they don’t, or that they like kale when they couldn’t possibly; but, I am telling you – learning to code is actually dare I say it fun.

If this sounds like it could be for you, find the course you need.

Learning to code: How hard is it actually?
1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. pegasus

    March 9, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    There is quite a bit of naivety in this article, the same naivety that every 1st year Computer Science student gets after completing Intro to Programming. It takes a lot more than a 12 week course to be good enough at programming to be employable to any company with a name you’ve heard of. The advice “You should learn Ruby on Rails” gave a chuckle as well, sure it’s a fine addition to the tool belt but it ain’t a ute. Any course that claims to teach you how to program will only give you a foundation, a touristic welcome into the world of programming but not enough to make you a citizen. It’s up to you to build on those skills up to have a portfolio worth looking at.

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