Evolutionary step to make learning on-line quicker,easier and less frustrating

Evolutionary step to make learning on-line quicker,easier and less frustrating
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#1

At the moment we may feel that learning to code by googling is as mad as studying at a library where an intruder has torn every page from every book and heaped it into a pile.

This might soon change if the pilot scheme I envisage is successful.
For example, this is how it might help someone who wants to learn all about APIs from scratch.

A type of blog would have been set up on which the maker has put the very first thing, then the second then the third
thing you could know about APIs.
Anyone is invited to add the fourth thing and so on so it becomes a volunteer built step by step guide to APIs.

An important rule would be that each post Added is nothing more than one step ahead of the last.


#2

“API” is just geek-speak for “my program needs to talk to another program”

And the best learning tool for that are the documentation provided by the API makers themselves.

Any API maker worth their salt will provide documentation and step-by=step guide, even example code for different languages, so your program can talk to their program.


#3

This will only work for the initial, simple steps. An API is just the public-facing side of a computer program/system, the instructions you can give it to do things: once you get past installing/connecting to/running the thing (bar very simple APIs), there’s just a big list of options.

Like

  1. get jQuery from here
  2. add it to the page like this
  3. now you have a million and one options which all depend on what you want to do, which don’t have an order.

Or

  1. get an API key for this REST API from here
  2. make a simple request to it like this
  3. now you can do a lot of things, but they’re all specific to what you want to do, so again don’t have any order

So it would boil down to

  1. Here is how you set yourself up to deal with API x
  2. Now Google the documentation

#4

Well instead of the step by step, how about if the blog was suggestions of words/ phrases, good sites and that to google.
In the case of APIs it might include suggestions about the use of callbacks with them.

P.S Of course there would be no rule for the order of posting.


#5

The general concept presented here might work if the blog authors were also the intended audience.

You would have to assemble a relatively small but active group (3-12?) of dedicated self-learners with decent writing skills. This would be more challenging then one might think, but reasonably possible. If things went well and enough interest generated, you would add more small groups. Remember to grow slow and be as selective as you can be without stifling progress.

After some time, over the course of many iterative adaptive improvements to the resulting content and presentation, this could become a useful resource for the public. Though I would not use such a grandiose term as “evolutionary” at this point.


#6

As Bootstrap came along to make page styling quicker and easier and Jquery came along to make Javascript quicker and easier, should something come along to make learning to code by googling quicker and easier?

Does anyone have any ideas about it?


#7

Maybe try reading a book? Here are two suggestions to get you started:

http://eloquentjavascript.net/


#8

If it wasn’t so difficult to carry out my above suggestion I might have called it a surfboard: a board of suggestions of how to surf for what your’e looking for.

“Node js” would have been one for APIs.


#9

Where did you get the idea that you can “learn to code by googling”? To learn to code you need well-structured learning resources aimed at your level. Try Udemy, Codeschool, Pluralsight etc or buy an up-to-date book on Web Development. There are good free resources too, but spending a bit of money will give you much better access to high quality well-curated resources. When you have a good solid foundation, you can fill in gaps in your knowledge and solve specific problems using reference materials like MDN and forums like Stack Overflow. But don’t confuse the dictionary with the textbook!