Ask DN: How to code, where do I start?

almost 7 years ago from , UX designer

I would like to know more about coding: I would like to be able to create a simple website or app on my own, which is the best website to start from?


  • Rebecca T, almost 7 years ago (edited almost 7 years ago )

    Although building from scratch and just doing it is the best thing to do when learning but if you're unsure/unfamiliar with code overall, here are some of the best resources I've gathered since I'm learning Javascript.

    I know this is lengthy but may help anyone else for future.

    Guides -

    http://codeguide.co/#html - learn the best syntax of html/css http://learn.shayhowe.com/html-css/ - very good book by Shay http://css3.bradshawenterprises.com/ - Learn CSS transitions, transforms, etc. http://emilolsson.com/tools/vw-unit-calc-an-online-responsive-css-font-size-calculator/ - viewport calc tool (for responsive) https://medium.com/@dhg/parallax-done-right-82ced812e61c#.k66ftzqij - Guide for parallax

    Best Online teaching resources

    https://www.codecademy.com (free), there's a pro plan with quizzes. https://www.khanacademy.org/computing (free) https://teamtreehouse.com/ (free two week trial) - IMO one of the best https://www.udacity.com/courses/all (Click on free course on the sidebar) https://www.codeschool.com/ Some free courses, but fun to do!


    http://www.codermania.com/javascript/lesson/1a/hello-world - Teaching you JS https://css-tricks.com/gulp-for-beginners/ - gulp (a complier tool) http://blog.modulus.io/absolute-beginners-guide-to-nodejs - Beginner Node.js guide http://eloquentjavascript.net/ - book on JS http://authenticff.com/journal/intro-to-react-js - Intro to ReactJS (used by Facebook) https://www.hackingwithswift.com/ - learn Swift for OS

    A front end handbook - helps you get a general idea of Front end


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  • Bryce HowitsonBryce Howitson, almost 7 years ago (edited almost 7 years ago )

    The first and MOST IMPORTANT thing is to find something you want to build.

    This can be an app you imagined, a website for your favorite nonprofit or your portfolio. It doesn't matter what this is as long as it's small and something you care about doing. The best way to learn is through direct application and if it's something you care about, you won't struggle to put in the time.

    Step two: pick a focus Having a project in mind lets you focus your learning. The concept of "code" is massive. Native apps are not built the same way a website is. Databases are nothing like CSS. There will be specific concepts and tools that will be required to build your idea and this gives you a starting point. Plus having a background in one vein of code will help you move to others as you need them.

    Build a foundation Depending on your goals you can get a quick foundation from some of the sites Rebecca Listed. (I personally like Codeacademy) If you're looking to build a website, learn the basics of HTML & CSS first. If you want to build an iOS app learn how to setup a project in Swift. And so on. However, I'd recommend only going a few lessons in. Just figure out enough to get started because you want to apply what you're learning to YOUR project not just to quizzes.

    Keep learning Once you have a basic foundation, keep getting help from tutorials and the web but now start asking very specific questions. If your project needs a carousel ask Google for carousel tutorials. Search StackOverflow for terms and problems that get in your way. Figure out how to modify the given examples to fit your needs. (which may involve other more specific tutorials)

    Get Help Find a mentor. This can be a teacher, tutorial author, friend, etc but it's important to have a person who can easily point you in the right direction. Consider asking an engineer on your team for pointers. Everyone likes to feel like an expert and they'll be happy that you're trying to make their job easier by understanding it.

    If you're having a hard time finding a person to talk to, I or one of my Codementor colleagues would be happy to help you.

    Get to done Finish building your project but know that it will probably evolve and change. That's fine but when you look back you'll see how much more you know now than when you started. Now to keep learning you just need to do it all again with a new project...

    Sure that all seems like a lot and it can be difficult, But you can do it! Plus you'll feel a massive sense of accomplishment when you get the first one built.

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  • John BJohn B, almost 7 years ago

    Similar question asked a week ago: Ask DN: JavaScript for Designers

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  • Alfonse SurigaoAlfonse Surigao, almost 7 years ago

    One of the best resource I've found when I first started making websites was a video series from Bucky a.k.a. The New Boston.

    Very easy to understand and definitely has one of the best video tutorial series. Here's a link to his video series for HTML and CSS: https://thenewboston.com/videos.php?cat=40

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  • Thompson GeorgeThompson George, almost 7 years ago

    I would skip the websites and start building straight from a text editor. It can teach you things code academy, treehouse can't.

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