Posts for Tag: learnstreet

Jumping into Ruby

Still not 100% confident in my HTML/CSS/Javascript skills but had an opportunity come up for me to jump into Ruby.  So far I'm picking up the very very very basics of it and so far so good.  Struggled forever trying to toggle between integers, floats and strings and getting my puts to work.  But had that a-ha moment last night when it clicked.  Methods was actually very easy to pick up.  Some of the higher math functions seem oddly configured but that's a minor issue.  Now working on flow control.

For those looking for a very good beginner's tutorial, check out Chris Pine's Learn to Program.  Of course, there's always Codecademy and LearnStreet as additional resources.  What I've found though is that reading Chris' tutorial and actually doing the coding in a "real world" environment with an actual text editor and Terminal forces me to do things with less training wheels.  There are times when things don't work no matter how many times I rewrite them but once they finally do work, that amazing a-ha moment is immensely greater than doing things in a more hand holding fashion.  I also find that when I'm not fed the answer and have to actually hunt and figure it out myself that it sticks with me more.  The journey of discovery is much more important than the destination.

Teaching myself to code

I am by training, a product person. I've spent the last 10+ years of my life conceiving of concepts and corralling enough cats to get a product from idea to reality. The one bottle-neck I always seem to encounter is that beyond rudimentary HTML/CSS (and Apple IIe BASIC), I can't code. It hasn't stopped me from getting products built but it seems to be the biggest lag as it relates to getting things out of my head and into production. I'll have an idea or a new feature for an existing one and then spend a fair amont of time conveying that to other people to get them to make it all work. It's in that conveying that most of the lag exists. As a problem solver, something needs to change.

Today I walk a path I should have taken 10 years ago when I was younger, had more energy and less responsibilities. I am teaching myself how to code. I don't expect any short cuts and probably won't produce anything worth diddly anytime soon. I'll lean on friends and colleagues who are actual real coders and hope I don't annoy them too much with my questions. One benefit of learning to code today is the wealth of resources out there from online books to tutorial websites like Codeacademy, Learnstreet, etc. Most of my time will be spent pouring over these but I've already started writing actual code. Mind, you it's stuff similar to this:

10 Print "Hello"
20 Goto 10

But hey we all have to start somewhere. I'm starting at the bottom and seeing how far I can get.