Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

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#61 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 09 January 2012 - 04:14 PM

View PostLanceJZ, on 09 January 2012 - 04:57 PM, said:

View PostCurtis Rutland, on 09 January 2012 - 10:20 AM, said:

I wasn't calling you out, jon. Just the people that are saying stuff like "lol DIC is better than that bullshit site."

I haven't worked the tutorials, so I wouldn't know. I just know the type of site, and their goals are totally different than ours here. I probably will work the tutorials later.


I have done the tutorials and I think they are just fine for what they are intended for. I don't know what those guys were expecting out of it.


There's nothing there, beyond the most basic syntax of the language, and that is very poorly presented. For you and me, who are already familiar with the basic loops, it's all very simple, but we're not going to get anything out of it because we're already there. For the beginner, I think this does not exercise the concepts enough. Correcting one for loop is not enough to get the idea into your head. More exercises would be the minimum to make plausible.
The language in which the concepts are expressed is not very clear - again, you and I know what they mean because we've done it already, but we're not the target audience.
The layout is very poorly thought out. You have detailed instructions (which are the first place the beginner should look) in a smaller, lighter typeface in a borderless box, and you have the problem the student is supposed to solve next to that, in a bigger, darker typeface in a bordered box. Where do they look first? What are they going to be paying most attention to? That's right: the wrong thing.

All in all, this is pretty clearly a couple of guys making quick demo in the garage. Could be a useful idea, if someone who cared were to try to do it. Isn't useful now.
Thus, bullshit. Does that clear it up?
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#62 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 09 January 2012 - 05:22 PM

Quote

Keep in mind that we do have different viewpoints. While you're clearly 'industry - oriented', i'm more of an academic person, a scientist - to -be so to speak. So it is only natural that our views on this differ.

Personally, I love a lot of the theoretical and mathematical aspects and share a lot of your sentiments. On a systematic level, I agree about having rigorous courses, tempered with maximizing the utility of the information being taught. In other words, balancing the breadth of topics covered with the depth too. :)
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#63 111027  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:51 AM

Agreed.

Now we really need to stop hijacking the topic.
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#64 EnterQuery  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:33 AM

Well, I'm very much the noob in this discussion. In fact, I discovered this site when looking for more challenges after completing codeacademy.com (though a noob, it was very easy). I'm very much interested in learning to code, not to become a programmer, more as a hobby and to further my IT knowledge.
I get that many of you are a bit suspicious of sites as CA, because of all the people who will think they know a lot about coding, but I look at it somewhat different. I'm a musician by trade and often people come up to me and tell me "how good they are at guitar" which more often than not is anything but true. Do I resent them for this? Of course not, to them it's a hobby and if I can pick up a few bucks by teaching some guy a few chords I'll be more than happy to do so.
All of that beeing said, I'd still like to learn how to write good code and CA only publishes basic challenges once a week, and that certainly will not please my curiosity. So does anyone have a few, not too hard, suggestions as where I should start (tutorials, languages, ...)? Any suggestions will be more than appreciated!
Cheers
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#65 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:40 AM

Tutorials? In Javascript? You mean like these ones?

And if you ever want to move on to C or Java or something, we have tutorials for those as well...
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#66 EnterQuery  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:43 AM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 10 January 2012 - 06:40 AM, said:

Tutorials? In Javascript? You mean like these ones?

And if you ever want to move on to C or Java or something, we have tutorials for those as well...


I think I posed my question incorrectly, what would be the most interesting language to start with? I've picked up from the discussion that JS really isn't that big of a deal if you want to get in to coding...
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#67 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 06:52 AM

Javascript is actually an interesting language, but there are some reasons why it's not a great language to start with. I could go into those, but I'm on my way to work, so I won't just now.

"What language to start with" is a question that's often discussed because there is no one good convincing answer to it. It depends or what you want to do, and what you want to learn, and what sort of person you are, and probably on a number of other factors that haven't come to my mind just now.

I think Java and C are both good starting languages, in principle, because they enforce aertain sorts of mental discipline that will be useful to you later. However, a case can be made for Python (ease of use, practicality for certain applications) or perl (flexibility, applicability to good early problems) or Lisp (makes you very smart) or even the .NET languages (um, useful in Windows shops).


However, if you want to be a good programmer, you'll probably want to learn lots of languages, so I see little sense in agonizing over it. Pick something that grabs you and learn it and move on, that's my advice.
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#68 EnterQuery  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 09:32 AM

Thanks for the advice, I think I'll start with Java since it pretty much runs on everything.
To get back to the original topic, even with a comprehensive site as this one it takes quite some searching before you're up and ready to start learning (finding the right compiler and installing it, finding the best tutorials, ...), I guess this is the advantage CodeAcademy has. Just sign up and it's all there in your browser. That beeing said, by searching for everything I already have an understanding of what I'm dealing with. I suppose both methodes have their merits...
Good thing I found this site though, I have a feeling I'll be posting here if (read: when) I get stuck :-)
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#69 ernie.cordell  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 10 January 2012 - 11:21 AM

View PostMartyr2, on 06 January 2012 - 01:31 PM, said:

During my morning browse around the net I caught wind of an article on CNN Money today titled "Code Year Draws 200,000 Aspiring Programmers" which details a project called "Code Year". It is put on by a website called CodeAcademy.com and I visited it awhile ago and thought it was an idea, but still very basic (they try to teach "real programming" through small Javascript lessons). . . .

My opinion is that this is going to take a bunch of programmer wannabes, give them a few simple Javascript lessons and then make them think they can compete for programmer jobs . . .
Your thoughts of what this might do?


I'm clearly late, but you're about to realize how late. I've been saying this since they had the ads for the exciting field of keypunch operation: It was once "the wave of the future." You can count among the wannabes all those kids whose grandparents are impressed because they can click the picture of a frog with their mouse, after which they claim that this generation is so much more technologically aware than the one which knows whereof it speaks or the one that invented the technology. What will it do? I think Javascript demonstrates principles just as well as BASIC -- or Scratch -- people will always have to struggle with their pipe dreams and rein in their expectations. I don't like scripting in general, but what am I going to do? It's the wave of the future ;)
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#70 mostyfriedman  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 13 January 2012 - 04:47 AM

I have seen this site a while ago and I thought that it sucked ass. I definitely cannot recommend it to anyone serious about learning how to program. I must say that I am biased towards more "traditional" instruction methods though, at least one good book is a must, good online resources and lots of practice. I also don't think this site or similar ones introduce any threats to serious programmers.
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#71 modi123_1  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 13 January 2012 - 08:29 AM

An interesting article that popped up on CNN regarding codeacademy:



Quote

Learn to code, get a job
By Douglas Rushkoff,


"Program or be programmed," became my mantra: If you are not a true user of digital technology, then you are likely being used by digital technology.


So to anyone out there who says you can't get a job: You can have one. A fun one. Learning code is not about numbers and mathematics.

If you know how to code, you can get a high-paying job right now, or make valuable stuff right now.


Yeah I get what he's saying, but it's not that easy. Who's been unemployeed for sometime? Who's had their job cut out from under them for the bottom dollar? Who has a boss or a company that pours the benefits and wealth as per Rushkoff?
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#72 innuendoreplay  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 15 January 2012 - 11:28 AM

I thinks their want to be wannabe's that you say....because as a good programmer going to the principles (theory, math, booleans, etc). I recently complete the javascript course of code academy and is a good point to start a TRANSITION (i previously know php, c#, java, etc) but i think that a no-started person can learn a real programming discipline through it.
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#73 Beach_Coder  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 15 January 2012 - 01:37 PM

View Postmodi123_1, on 13 January 2012 - 10:29 AM, said:

An interesting article that popped up on CNN regarding codeacademy:



Quote

Learn to code, get a job
By Douglas Rushkoff,


"Program or be programmed," became my mantra: If you are not a true user of digital technology, then you are likely being used by digital technology.


So to anyone out there who says you can't get a job: You can have one. A fun one. Learning code is not about numbers and mathematics.

If you know how to code, you can get a high-paying job right now, or make valuable stuff right now.


Yeah I get what he's saying, but it's not that easy. Who's been unemployeed for sometime? Who's had their job cut out from under them for the bottom dollar? Who has a boss or a company that pours the benefits and wealth as per Rushkoff?



I've been unemployed for quite sometime. I know how to "code." I can't get a job digging a ditch. I could write ridiculously inefficient code all the live long day. Some of it even works some of the time. Of course, I don't think I've ever taken a single class in anything related to programming, or computers for that matter. I've got a degree in Accounting, so compared to just about any other person out there who graduated 1,000 years ago I'm a crackerjack. Thing thing is, "coding" isn't programming or architecture or art or problem solving. I've read a few times in various places that anything that ends in "script" isn't a programming language. So using nothing but whateverscript can't be programming. That Codecademy is a great idea. I wouldn't fret over it though. If a company needs someone who knows how to program, and do it well, they aren't looking for any jackass who knows html, css and javascript. On the other hand, if one has a degree in programming and knows every homework assignment inside and out for html and css and javascript and vb and java and whatever else they shove down your throat for a semester but can't solve a problem, or would rather cut out at 4:30 rather than immerse himself in a problem no else in an adjacent cubicle knows how to solve, or cares to, or can't grasp mathematics or logic, I'll take a guy who doesn't have formal programming training but has the rest of the package; and I'll do just fine with that. Brilliance, passion, dedication, the ability to make miracles happen - these things aren't found in some online tutorial or in 6 credits of .Net. Do I know how to implement this or how to run that? Mostly no. But I'm learning, and once I know it, it's not about knowing it, it's about utilizing it, applying to something useful, elegant, innovative. Until I learn enough of the tools to do anything though, you are all safe in your jobs from me, even the multitudes twelve timezones away who pump out code for $1 an hour. Now, back to my happy struggle with my coin toss console program...
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#74 innuendoreplay  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 15 January 2012 - 01:49 PM

View PostBeach_Coder, on 15 January 2012 - 01:37 PM, said:

View Postmodi123_1, on 13 January 2012 - 10:29 AM, said:

An interesting article that popped up on CNN regarding codeacademy:



Quote

Learn to code, get a job
By Douglas Rushkoff,


"Program or be programmed," became my mantra: If you are not a true user of digital technology, then you are likely being used by digital technology.


So to anyone out there who says you can't get a job: You can have one. A fun one. Learning code is not about numbers and mathematics.

If you know how to code, you can get a high-paying job right now, or make valuable stuff right now.


Yeah I get what he's saying, but it's not that easy. Who's been unemployeed for sometime? Who's had their job cut out from under them for the bottom dollar? Who has a boss or a company that pours the benefits and wealth as per Rushkoff?



I've been unemployed for quite sometime. I know how to "code." I can't get a job digging a ditch. I could write ridiculously inefficient code all the live long day. Some of it even works some of the time. Of course, I don't think I've ever taken a single class in anything related to programming, or computers for that matter. I've got a degree in Accounting, so compared to just about any other person out there who graduated 1,000 years ago I'm a crackerjack. Thing thing is, "coding" isn't programming or architecture or art or problem solving. I've read a few times in various places that anything that ends in "script" isn't a programming language. So using nothing but whateverscript can't be programming. That Codecademy is a great idea. I wouldn't fret over it though. If a company needs someone who knows how to program, and do it well, they aren't looking for any jackass who knows html, css and javascript. On the other hand, if one has a degree in programming and knows every homework assignment inside and out for html and css and javascript and vb and java and whatever else they shove down your throat for a semester but can't solve a problem, or would rather cut out at 4:30 rather than immerse himself in a problem no else in an adjacent cubicle knows how to solve, or cares to, or can't grasp mathematics or logic, I'll take a guy who doesn't have formal programming training but has the rest of the package; and I'll do just fine with that. Brilliance, passion, dedication, the ability to make miracles happen - these things aren't found in some online tutorial or in 6 credits of .Net. Do I know how to implement this or how to run that? Mostly no. But I'm learning, and once I know it, it's not about knowing it, it's about utilizing it, applying to something useful, elegant, innovative. Until I learn enough of the tools to do anything though, you are all safe in your jobs from me, even the multitudes twelve timezones away who pump out code for $1 an hour. Now, back to my happy struggle with my coin toss console program...

I'm with you...it's about applying to something useful...
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#75 darkbladeo  Icon User is offline

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Re: Codeacademy.com, Good Idea or Disaster for Programmers?

Posted 26 February 2014 - 03:42 PM

well hi... i was using codeacademy Finished javascript and python on it
i am certainly not one of those people who think thata its especailly since everything in it up to15 % nub lvl 60% was beginner lvl though the other 40% were more lessons , yet i dont know much else about coding and i hope to learn more(about python and alot more) achool wont do since im 15 lol...... anyone have suggestions on what to do ,ps codeacademy always ends at inheritance though for python it ended at writing data to a file.Though i can do that much i dont have the programming sense fully enough yet and i want to learn more any suggestions(everything starts with learning ) ps just because im 15 dont suggest baby steps lmao....... i do want to learn more starting young works no? js last code =
function StaffMember(name,discountPercent){
    this.name = name;
    this.discountPercent = discountPercent;
}

var sally = new StaffMember("Sally",5);
var bob = new StaffMember("Bob",10);

// Create yourself again as 'me' with a staff discount of 20%
var me = new StaffMember("kise ", 20);

var cashRegister = {
    total:0,
    lastTransactionAmount: 0,
    add: function(itemCost){
        this.total += (itemCost || 0);
        this.lastTransactionAmount = itemCost;
    },
    scan: function(item,quantity){
        switch (item){
        case "eggs": this.add(0.98 * quantity); break;
        case "milk": this.add(1.23 * quantity); break;
        case "magazine": this.add(4.99 * quantity); break;
        case "chocolate": this.add(0.45 * quantity); break;
        }
        return true;
    },
    voidLastTransaction : function(){
        this.total -= this.lastTransactionAmount;
        this.lastTransactionAmount = 0;
    },
    // Create a new method applyStaffDiscount here
    applyStaffDiscount: function(employee){
        this.total -= (this.total*(employee.discountPercent/100));
        }
    
};

cashRegister.scan('eggs',1);
cashRegister.scan('milk',1);
cashRegister.scan('magazine',3);
// Apply your staff discount by passing the 'me' object 
// to applyStaffDiscount
cashRegister.applyStaffDiscount(me);
console.log(cashRegister.total.toFixed(2));
// Show the total bill
//console.log('Your bill is '+cashRegister.total.toFixed(2));
im still newb suggestions where to start if im only that far (thinking of web, apps and gui
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