Why Kids Should Learn How to Code?

Increases critical thinking and problem-solving skills. 

For many developers like myself, part of the appeal of coding is the challenge and reward of seeing my code come to life after debugging. Coding, debugging and remixing your own and other people’s code is fundamentally problem-solving activities. This will help kids to go back and think about what just happened and quickly solve the problem. Kids will learn to break big problems down into smaller manageable peace and also to use already gained knowledge on their own little projects.

 

I think everyone should learn how to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think.
– Steve Jobs

 

Future Job Ready

With the knowledge of programming, anyone can become superheroes, with this skill their opportunities will increase which can open pathways in, medical, science, engineering, defence, space and more. In the next 25 years, 71% of all new jobs will be required to have some STEM knowledge and 15% of the jobs in the future will be all automated, this includes such things as drivers, train/bus drivers, and other factory jobs. Learning to code will increase your child’s odds of securing a lucrative STEM career, especially in a world where computing jobs are growing at over twice the national average.

 

I wrote my first software program when I was thirteen years old. It was for playing tic-tac-toe. The computer I used was huge and cumbersome and slow and absolutely compelling.
– Bill Gates

 

Turning Ideas To Action

Once kids have the foundations of how to code, this then gives them the platform to start building whatever they desire. A famous example is Bill Gates who learned how to code when he was in eighth grade. His first program was in BASIC and was a computer representation of Game Tic Tac Toe. At the age of 15, he and Paul Allen made $20,000 with a computer program called Traf-O-Data which measured traffic flow in Seattle area.

Another example is Linus Torvalds the creator of the Linux operating system and Git starting to learn to code when he was in primary school just by doing simple stuff. When he started Linux he called it a “Hobby”, now the Linux operating system is a widely known within the IT community, it also powers 446 of the world’s top 500 supercomputers.

Programming Is Awesome And Fun.

With programming kids can make and produce many fascinating applications, they may build games, apps, websites, chat bots and much more. Children can tap into their creativity and produce things that us adults wouldn’t have imagined.

For many, part of the appeal of coding is the challenge and reward of seeing their code come to life after a good debugging session. Don’t be fooled, however–with the right instruction, getting started with programming can be easy and fun.

Programming is the language of the digital age.

When was I was growing up I wasn’t introduced to my first phone until I was in year 11, nowadays children are growing up differently than the previous generations. We are surrounded by Smartphones, Laptops, Tablets, Youtube, Netflix, and Facebook which are embedded in their daily lives. Even the toys are digital including Legos, LeapFrogs, Spheros and whiteboards. With this we need to understand the importance of the logic behind them, understanding the mechanics and code helps them understand the world.

 

Top 4 Programming Language to Learn in 2017

Writing Code - Programming Languages

1. HTML/CSS

For any website to run and work, it will require HTML which stands for Hypertext Markup Language and CSS which Cascade Style Sheets. Both are fairly easy to learn but if you want to have a functional website CSS makes everything look pretty. HTML/CSS is an essential skill to have such that all websites are built on these current web technologies.

FREE Resource

2. Python

Fast and ultra portable programming language, used by some of the biggest tech companies in the  world like Google, Dropbox and YouTube. Python is super easy to learn,  recommended as a beginner’s programming language by many people including us.

Python is currently big on data Analytics, finances and data representation. Large banking and finance companies use this to comb through big data sets to predict what will the economy will look like, shares, stocks and other financial services.

FREE Ebooks

3. Ruby

Ruby is a high-level programming language and a popular general purpose language. Currently in high demand in the marketplace, as it has more commonly used with Ruby on Rails framework to develop web applications. Concise and readable, it is easy to pick up but also plenty powerful. Companies like Twitter, Soundcloud, Goodreads and Kickstarter got their products off the ground with Ruby.

FREE Resource

4. Javascript

JavaScript is the programming language of the web, works alongside HTML/CSS. It is currently one of the most popular and in demand skills in today’s job market for a good reason. JavaScript is the backbone of modern websites it enables additional functionality such as smooth scroll, responsive design and animations. Javascript is also the foundation of a lot of commonly used libraries like jQuery and frameworks like AngularJS, ReactJS and NodeJS.

FREE Ebooks

Where To Learn?

If you want to a career change the best place to start learning to program is Udacity, if you want to just up skill yourself the second best place is Udemy.  Udacity is slightly pricey which won’t work for some people with a tight budget or some students. Plus side is the courses are supported by big tech companies such as Facebook, Twitter, Google. On Udemy you can choose various courses not just, programming, equally good as you can up skill yourself in other areas.

You would also like to check out Coursera and Code School

HELP With Programming!

If you ever get stuck while programming you can ask Google for some help. A few good websites to bookmark are Stackoverflow and Quora.

 

 

How To Install Python Inside Windows?

If you are currently using a windows operating system, the follow the steps to install Python on Windows.

Where to download?

Always download from a reputable source

https://www.python.org/downloads/

 

Which version?

We are going to use version three of python. It is going to get most of the future updates with version 2 only getting bug fixes.

At the time of writing version 3.5.2 is the latest. So install it. I always try to install the MSI version.

If offered an option to install for all users or just the current user. Install for all users.

Accept the default file location. I was given c:\users\mark\appdata\local\programs\python\python35-32

If given an option to add python exe to the path say yes. This will make your life a lot easier.
Python Install setup window

Start Up A Windows Command Prompt

Command prompt is the interface to issue type commands to windows. It should be under Accessories in your Windows start menu or just press Windows Key + R cmd <enter>

Commad Prompt Windows

 

Check The Version Number Command Prompt

Type in python at the command prompt and look at the output. Make sure it gives the version number you downloaded.

Command Prompt Windows python setup

 

At the python prompt type in

print Hello World

and check the output

 

Type in

quit()

To get out python and go back to the command prompt

 

Upgrade pip with

Pip install --upgrade pip

 

I get an error message as well as I success message, but the upgrade works.Pip is the preferred program it use to download python components. But we upgrade because recent versions offers much better performance.

 

Create a project directory

Mkdir testproj

Cd testproj

This is where our code would go

 

Make a test project with virtualenv

Install virtualenv

Pip install virtualenv

 

We use virtualenv to keep our list of requirements for the different versions of our requirements seperate. We are going to test downloading requirements to make sure everything is set up correctly.

Virtualenv

Builds the virtualenv. This is just a set of directories that python puts special versions of everything in.

Type in at the command line

Scripts\activate

This activates your virtualenv meaning with python will use libraries and modules inside of it.

Do a dir to see the list of directories it has created.

Hacker_pals_blog_post_19072016_5

Once set up we need to activate the virtualenv which means we will use the versions of libraries in it by default. The (testproj) is the name of the virtualenv that we have activated.

 

Example with numpy

We are going to use an example from numpy to check that everything is set up correctly.

First download numpy with pip

Pip install numpy

 

At the Windows Command prompt make sure you have activated the virtualenv.

Next start up python. Type at the command prompt

Python

 

Then at the python console

import numpy as np

 

a = np.array([1, 2, 3])  # Create a rank 1 array
print (type(a))            # Prints "<type 'numpy.ndarray'>"
print (a.shape)            # Prints "(3,)"
print (a[0], a[1], a[2])   # Prints "1 2 3"
a[0] = 5                 # Change an element of the array
print (a)                  # Prints "[5, 2, 3]"

b = np.array([[1,2,3],[4,5,6]])   # Create a rank 2 array
print (b.shape)                     # Prints "(2, 3)"
print (b[0, 0], b[0, 1], b[1, 0])   # Prints "1 2 4"

 

If the output matches the comment numpy works correctly.

Hacker_pals_blog_post_19072016_6

5 Python Programming Resources For Beginners!

This is list for anyone who is just starting to dive into Python programming, we have complied a list of resources to get you up and running on your next software startup or just small little projects around the house. Currently there are a heap of resources online and the list could go on forever but for you I have given you five(5) awesome tools.

Python For Kids Book

Python For Kids – By Jason R.Briggs

1. Python For Kids

This would probably be my favorite book which I had to include in on this list, although it’s the only non-free one. The reason Python For Kids is on this is because it is an awesome introduction to the world of programming. It has fun hands on exercises and examples which help to follow along and actually understand python. This book I would recommend for anyone kids, teens, adults, just give it a go.

Screen Shot 2016-07-16 at 4.48.48 PM

2. Non-Programmers Tutorial For Python 3 (FREE)

Made possible by the contributors this is an open source python book, it has some really good examples to follow along.

6762544

3. A Byte of Python (Free)

“A Byte of Python” is a free book on programming using the Python language. It serves as a tutorial or guide to the Python language for a beginner audience. If all you know about computers is how to save text files, then this is the book for you.

Python_3.3.2_reference_document.pdf

4. Official Python Tutorial (FREE)

Although this is official python tutorial by python itself, I still highly recommend having a look at this, It has some awesome content.

images

5. Dive Into Python (FREE)

If you have prior experience in programming, this book would be the way to go. It has in depth explanation also it come with all the examples in a neat little folder so you can follow along. If your first language is not english it also come in 6 different languages.

  • Italian
  • French
  • Spanish
  • Chinese
  • Korean
  • Russian

Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Learn Python Programming!

Blog Title Image

1. Python Is Easy To Learn 

Python has a unique style which makes it such an easy language to start to learn. Most universities and schools teach Python programming because of thee very reason.

2. It’s Open Source

Made only possible by a group of awesome volunteers, these guys help maintain python and keep doing awesome work.

OSI standard logo

 

3 .Free Resources

There are plenty of Free material all over the the internet, you just need to start googling, because I am such a  nice person I have included some links here >> Ebook, Youtube, Interactive, Random.
Oparah Free

4. Great Community

Behind this awesome programming language you also have awesome people. The Python community are amazingly helpful and easily guide you whenever you are in need. You can find some bellow.

 

PyCon APAC 2013 - Python Conference

5. Great Pay

Yes average salary is starts at around $65K(AUD)+

6. Big Companies Use It.

Google, Youtube, Dropbox, Quora and Reddit are all powered by Python and its features.

7. Awesome Python Frameworks

There are currently over 82K libraries/modules that you can add to your python program.

 

8. Constantly Improving. 

Currently there are two major versions of python. 2.7 and 3.0, of theses they have sub versions which are improvements on the previous. Python is constantly improving itself which the users more features and so we can do more crazy awesome coding.

 

9. Ideal for startups

Easily prototype your next startup using python, you can quickly setup and show your MVP in no time.

Movie Social Network, a meme about startups

10. Its portable

Python can be incorporated into and used in a majority of devices, including Raspberry Pi’s and Arduino’s

Ardunio Uno Board