Codecademy update

It was way back in January that I posed the question, “Can I learn to code?”  So two months on, what’s the answer?  No, wait!  Let me put that another way!!
var learnCode = prompt (“Can I learn to code?”);
if (learnCode === “Yes” || learnCode === “No”)
{console.log (“Then why not write a blog post explaining why?”);}

It’s pathetic, I know, but even that little exercise represents a massive leap in my programming knowledge.

I have my ups and downs with Codecademy.  Some days I think I’m keeping up nicely and can handle the new concepts the course introduces and more or less complete the exercises (or at least understand the solution when I have to ask for help on the Q&A forum).  Other days, I feel like I must have missed out some huge chunk of the course because I have no idea what’s going on.  I really struggled to get my head around recursive functions.  Mind you, I just googled recursive functions and came up with this:

It is a powerful technique, which unfortunately is not easy to understand at first. 

So maybe I shouldn’t be too hard on myself.  It looks like Codecademy comes back to it again so I’m hoping I’ll see the light quite soon.

But that really underlines my main gripe with Codecademy.  It is sometimes a bit careless in setting exercises that the lessons haven’t quite prepped you for.  It’s annoying but not a deal-breaker for me – yet.

It’s also got a hitch at the moment whereby it tells you that lessons you’ve completed are only 88% completed yet tells you lessons you’ve not even opened are 100% complete.  I’m not the only one experiencing this.  I’ve had a reply from Codecademy reassuring me it’s their fault and they’re looking into fixing it – but it’s been a while now.

But, apart from those annoying gripes, I’m loving it!  I know I will never be a programmer;  that’s not the point.  But I do feel already that I’ve peeked behind the curtain of programming.  Some of the mystery has been revealed to me and that’s a hugely exciting feeling.

I’m more or less comfortable with strange words like variables, strings, arrays and I can call a function.  I’m delighted to find that my love of the semi-colon finally has an outlet.

I want to learn more.  I’ve even put my name down for a Raspberry-Pi, for goodness sake!

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