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May 1, 2012

Do Yourself a Favor. Learn to Code. (Then Teach Me.)

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Many of us consume the language of coding every single day, without ever knowing it. Just as basic computer skills have become a tool for survival, so will the programming language. Many traditional professions and even new disciplines will need to add a basic understanding of code to stay relevant. This is especially true in Web marketing. If you have a career in digital marketing, understanding code gives new perspective to what you do every day. Take your skill set to a new level; find out how you can get started with an education in coding now.

Blue abstract representations of codeHow can you help non-programmers understand the development process?
via Ars Technica

If you’re in a profession that outsiders tend to not understand, you better think of a lot of different ways to explain what it is you do. Enter programming. In this post, the author compiles tips on how to make programming a digestible topic to non-techy people.

Hands typing code on a laptop computerHow I Learned To Code
via Forbes

You want to learn how to code for Internet marketing and you’re overwhelmed. Find out how one woman was able to piece together a complete education on her own. Through online university courses, in-person workshops and coding boot camps, Natasha Murashev learned the ropes of coding, and has tips for choosing classes in this post.

Future coder Jon Galloway's daughterWhy I Taught My Daughter To Code (A Little)
via ASP.NET Weblogs Jon Galloway

In this post by Jon Galloway, he discusses coding as a language that we will all need to understand in the near future. Just like any language, knowing the basics can get you far. Discover what happened when he spent just eight hours teaching code to his 11-year-old daughter.

Red lanterns hanging in treesSo you want to learn to code
via Yet Another Code Blog

The demand for programmers and the amount of people who want to learn how to code for Internet marketing is high. But this author warns that booms are usually followed by busts. Mike Howard explains why having a Plan B is an important and often-overlooked step in becoming a programming pro.

Green Coding 101 words with binary code for visual effectWhy learning to code is not just a horrible trend
via Digital Trends

Just because you want to learn coding does not mean you have to become a programmer. This is the argument author Natt Garlin makes in this post highlighting just some of the benefits of coding outside a career. Among the perks? Critical thinking skills you can apply daily.

 





13 responses to “Do Yourself a Favor. Learn to Code. (Then Teach Me.)”

  1. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Just ran across another example of programming as mandatory knowledge, shared by Facebook’s design director, Kate Aronowitz:

    As a result, the vast majority of designers Aronowitz brings in house know how to code. It helps Facebook move faster, because they can hammer out prototypes on their own, and start testing various hypotheses, without having to wait on engineers. It’s a skill that Aronowitz herself doesn’t have, but one she told those gathered at the Designers Fund event will soon be essential. “I never learned,” she advised them, “but the next person who has my job will.”

    (http://www.fastcodesign.com/1669610/kate-aronowitz-facebooks-design-director-on-crafting-a-design-led-organization)

  2. Mark Knowles writes:

    Virginia,

    This is a great post. It is such a powerful cultural shift for business online. Tip #1: Read first, then write.

    Mark

  3. Stuart Wooster writes:

    Hi V!

    Our CEO of our company is on a drive to make coders out of us all, and rightly so considering our line of work! (Hence he sent this post to the team.)

    At a glance Codeacademy looks like an easy way of learning, I’ll bookmark this page and check out the rest later.

    Stu :)

  4. Brandon writes:

    Try Udacity: http://www.udacity.com/

    I’m pretty task-oriented, so learning to code has been a challenge since a lot of the material for beginners is very broad (write strings, do basic math, etc.) and I get bored easily. What’s nice about Udacity is that they give you a task that you’ll complete by the end of the course.

  5. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Thanks, Mark. While I rely on Pixelsilk for a lot of the heavy lifting on our site, I’d be at a great disadvantage if I couldn’t dig into the HTML when necessary.

    Stu, I have to say I’m honored to hear your CEO shared this post with your team. As you go along your learning process, I’d love to share stories.

    Brandon, thanks for the recommendation. I’ll be checking out Udacity. Hands-on tasks make all the difference.

  6. Andy Kuiper writes:

    codecademy.com —> I too like this site, so I signed up and then… nothing- ugh! no time ;-)

  7. Rich writes:

    The very thought of coding brings me out in a cold sweat and I start to twitch – I think it’s a phobia, I need help!

    Beyond very basic html I am clueless, for now I will get by but should the time permit I will face up and conquer!

  8. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Andy, I feel ya there. Making the time is probably the biggest challenge of all.

  9. Jan Smith writes:

    IA’s and Content Creators need to code too! I’ve been slowly teaching myself as I support clients through various CMS systems, so I’m not at the mercy of developers who keep me waiting or underdeliver.

  10. Lauren Rutley writes:

    Great post, Virginia! I admit I just started learning basics of code when I worked heavily in email marketing, and learned a lot about rendering engines, browser comparability and such, I’m now learning a lot more about HTML for websites thanks to your team, and am bookmarking this post. Your list is helpful to me as we overhaul our site! I may not be doing the coding but to manage people who are, I need to speak the same language.

  11. Ayaz @ Social Media Marketing Services writes:

    Thanks Virginia for providing great knowledge full resource.

    I think its really important to get to know the coding himself first because with that you can get to know how other people are working if you outsource any work.

  12. Heather Steele writes:

    Hi Virginia – this is a great post and one that I think has been a long time coming. I started teaching myself CSS and HTML in college and wrapped it nicely into my writing and marketing career. Now even as a Marketing Director I still use my code skills on a daily basis. I built and maintain our company websites – saving us thousands in outsourcing costs. And I really like the control I get by being able to dive under the hood and do everything myself.

    Thanks for introducing me to codeacademy – I’ve been trying to teach my designer some basic code and this will probably serve him much better than I would. :)

  13. Virginia Nussey writes:

    Your story is totally what I’m talking about as far as the necessity of reading and writing code as a marketer. Holla! I’d love to hear how your team fairs with Codeacademy. Thanks, Heather!



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