Do you wish you could create the next Minecraft, Angry Birds, League of Legends, Counterstrike or Quake but don’t know the first thing about apps? Do you want to design your own incredible website, but still have to Google the definition of HTML?
Thank goodness we have the Internet. In the last few years, several sites have been popping up across the web to teach us the basics of coding.
Here are five of the best coding tutorial websites, to get you started with programming code school or code academy.
- For the nerd: Coding Bat
Java and Python
CodingBat is a free site of live coding problems to build coding skill in Java, and now in Python, created by Nick Parlante who is computer science lecturer at Stanford. The coding problems give immediate feedback, so it's an opportunity to practice and solidify understanding of the concepts. The problems could be used as homework, or for self-study practice, or in a lab, or as live lecture examples. The problems, all listed off the CodingBat home, have low overhead: short problem statements (like an exam) and immediate feedback in the browser. The idea for CodingBat came from my experience teaching CS at Stanford combined with seeing how student's used unit-tests in more advanced courses, and crystalized when I saw an Owen Astrachan demo of a unit-testing thing he uses with his Duke students.
- For the social coder: Code Academy
Codecademy Codeacademy, perhaps the most famous of the coding tutorial sites, is great for the coder who’s still unsure about the whole thing. It’s super easy (and addictive). You earn badges that you can post to social media sites, much like in a game. If you’re competitive, you can keep track of your friends’ scores and compare your progress. Overall, Codeacademy offers a well-rounded coding education that’s free and very simple to use, which explains why it’s so popular – even New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is on the site.
- For impatient learners: Learn Street
If you can’t stand all that “build a solid foundation” stuff they taught you in school and you want to see your code doing things right away – LearnStreet’s a great place to start. You’ll still get all the basics, but you’ll also get hands-on practice in the Code Garage section of the site. Build something as simple as Minesweeper or show off a from-scratch game of blackjack. You can go solo on your projects, or collaborate with your friends. Bonus: Get hints and tips, chat, and tweet with actual programmers.
- For the indie programmer: Hackety Hack
Sometimes you have to start small. Hackety Hack is a beautiful site that teaches you the Ruby programming language – basically, the “Feng Shui” of coding languages. Hackety Hack is simple, streamlined, and easy to use. The site features their top picks of user designs (right now, Connect Four and Calendar), and a blog geared toward fledgling developers. Our advice? Get on the site before everyone’s using it and it’s no longer cool.
- For video tutorials: Codehs
- For the one who wants to know it all: w3schools
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