Posts tagged code

Yes There is a Chrome Extension That Makes Reading the News More Fun 
The extension’s here. The code is here.
The original xkcd comic is here.

Yes There is a Chrome Extension That Makes Reading the News More Fun 

The extension’s here. The code is here.

The original xkcd comic is here.

Most programming doesn’t require a special brain, but it’s more frustrating and messier than anyone lets on. There are thousands of enthusiastic blog posts, classes and apps that aim to entice you with the promise of a slick, unequivocal procedure for learning to code. They rarely mention the tedium of getting your environment set up (which, trust me, even the nicest of your programmer friends don’t want to help you with, because that stuff is mad frustrating and nobody remembers how they did it).

They don’t tell you that a lot of programming skill is about developing a knack for asking the right questions on Google and knowing which code is best to copy-paste. And they don’t let you in on a big secret: that there is no mastery, there is no final level. The anxiety of feeling lost and stupid is not something you learn to conquer, but something you learn to live with.
Kate Ray, Technical Cofounder, Scroll Kit. TechCrunch, Don’t Believe Anyone Who Tells You Learning To Code Is Easy.
Government’s Not Working: GitHub Files a Bug
BUG: Government occasionally shuts down.
QA 01: Looks like we’ve been patching the original source for 200+ years.
QA 02: It seems that allocateFunds depends on the Congress class without any proper error handling, causing a complete shut-down of all non-essential system services. Perhaps a reserve allocation is required to ensure the system can use it when no resources are available.
QA 03: I looked into the ‘Constitution’ module and it’s shot to hell. The original base had little or no supporting documentation, leading to various conflicting interpretations of the desired functionality. What’s worse, it’s been patched like crazy, and some of these patches even contradict each other (for example, amendments 18th and 21st). Recommend re-factoring the entire code base, incorporating the more useful patches (such as amendments 15th,19th) into the baseline.
QA 04: Um, has anyone seen the crazy fragmentation in the congressional district db? That can’t be helping things.
QA 05: Note that @JeffersonDavis actually forked this project before. A lot of people contributed, but @WhiteHouse had IP concerns and shut that down.
FJP: And on and on it goes.
Image: Bug opened by Dave Rupert on the White House Forty-Four repo, Via GitHub.

Government’s Not Working: GitHub Files a Bug

BUG: Government occasionally shuts down.

QA 01: Looks like we’ve been patching the original source for 200+ years.

QA 02: It seems that allocateFunds depends on the Congress class without any proper error handling, causing a complete shut-down of all non-essential system services. Perhaps a reserve allocation is required to ensure the system can use it when no resources are available.

QA 03: I looked into the ‘Constitution’ module and it’s shot to hell. The original base had little or no supporting documentation, leading to various conflicting interpretations of the desired functionality. What’s worse, it’s been patched like crazy, and some of these patches even contradict each other (for example, amendments 18th and 21st). Recommend re-factoring the entire code base, incorporating the more useful patches (such as amendments 15th,19th) into the baseline.

QA 04: Um, has anyone seen the crazy fragmentation in the congressional district db? That can’t be helping things.

QA 05: Note that @JeffersonDavis actually forked this project before. A lot of people contributed, but @WhiteHouse had IP concerns and shut that down.

FJP: And on and on it goes.

Image: Bug opened by Dave Rupert on the White House Forty-Four repo, Via GitHub.

Coder Quits Job And Moves Into Tent To Work on Startup

Thomas Backlund is a coder who quit his job and moved into a tent in the woods near Stockholm just so he could dedicate his full attention to his startup project, blockie.io. Backlund powers his laptop, external battery, and phone with two portable Brunton 62 Watt solar panels, and cooks his food on a Primus OmniLite stove. Backlund provides updates about his experience on his website.

So, what’s a coder’s motivation to move to a forest to work on a tech project?

Via Mashable

Not only does [living in a forest] give me the time to do this but it also gives me peace of mind.

I change my location about two times per week.

Computer, forest, batteries… unpractical? Maybe it would have been more rational to keep the apartment and just cut costs?

Well, rational and right do not always align.

I have no apartment, no job, no income. Still I’m exactly where I should be. I’m on my path. My gut feeling lets me know that.

I’m not exiting to a normal life until my startup has taken off. This is my big adventure. I’m not coming back empty-handed.

Backlund has been in the woods since March and there are no reports of his startup receiving any investors yet. 

FJP: Maybe this Backlund fellow is onto something. After all, studies show that nature resets our minds and bodies and makes us more focused. Maybe we should all be creating our technology-based masterpieces in the woods or on a mountain top. I think I’ll start with a balcony, though. Baby steps. - Krissy

Images: Backlund’s personal photos from his website

A Coder’s Fury
Image: Page source, Slidedeck. Select to embiggen.

A Coder’s Fury

Image: Page source, Slidedeck. Select to embiggen.

Codecademy Completes PHP Track
Codecademy, the free learn how to program site, has launched a complete PHP learning track.
Via Venture Beat:

PHP is a good start, as the language is simple enough to let beginners get their feet wet while powerful enough to build world-class websites like Facebook. And with over five million PHP developers on the planet, new programmers would be joining perhaps the largest cohort of developers around, with plenty of code help, sample, code, and forums to help them progress beyond the basics.
And with Andi Gutmans and Co. at Zend focusing on bringing the power of PHP to blended mobile applications, PHP skills are helpful not only on the server but also in cloud-connected native app development.

While many are learning Python, Django and Ruby on Rails, I think it makes sense to spend time getting up to speed with PHP for the simple reason that the two dominant, open source Content Management Systems that many of us use personally or professionally, WordPress and Drupal, are PHP-based. Learn some skills and you can hack your way to new features and functionalities within them.
The Codecademy course starts with the basics, moves into If/Else statements, spends time with arrays and loops before heading into functions and object oriented programming. In total, there are 11 modules and 86 lessons. For free. — Michael

Codecademy Completes PHP Track

Codecademy, the free learn how to program site, has launched a complete PHP learning track.

Via Venture Beat:

PHP is a good start, as the language is simple enough to let beginners get their feet wet while powerful enough to build world-class websites like Facebook. And with over five million PHP developers on the planet, new programmers would be joining perhaps the largest cohort of developers around, with plenty of code help, sample, code, and forums to help them progress beyond the basics.

And with Andi Gutmans and Co. at Zend focusing on bringing the power of PHP to blended mobile applications, PHP skills are helpful not only on the server but also in cloud-connected native app development.

While many are learning Python, Django and Ruby on Rails, I think it makes sense to spend time getting up to speed with PHP for the simple reason that the two dominant, open source Content Management Systems that many of us use personally or professionally, WordPress and Drupal, are PHP-based. Learn some skills and you can hack your way to new features and functionalities within them.

The Codecademy course starts with the basics, moves into If/Else statements, spends time with arrays and loops before heading into functions and object oriented programming. In total, there are 11 modules and 86 lessons. For free. — Michael

How To Tell HTML from HTML5
Via FSCKED

How To Tell HTML from HTML5

Via FSCKED

And There We Go
Via

And There We Go

Via

The Art of Creative Coding

"This is a starting point and it is a conversation. And it is a way of introducing this realization that the computer isn’t just a tool that has a set of possibilities that you have been given. 

"As systems get more and more closed, the more that we can actually understand how to write our own software — that is really a way one can express themselves and break the bounds and limitations of what larger institutions and corporations have made available to us to do on our computers. And so, it can really open ones eyes to thing you weren’t aware of." — Daniel Schiffman, Interactive Telecommunications Program at NYU.

Codecademy adds API training with YouTube, NPR, Bit.ly, and 6 other services to help new devs build actual products

One of the difficult things when learning to code is to have actual content and data to work with.

Codeacademy, the free online platform with programming lessons, is solving part of that problem by partnering with others to bring data sets to the table via API’s.

Via VentureBeat:

The new lessons on Codecademy will help users build web apps that, for instance mash up news from NPR with YouTube videos on the same topic. Or, build a product highlighting hot social content being shared with Bit.ly, and charging for it with Stripe. New developers could even start interacting with mobile phones and sending text messages via Twilio’s API, [Codeacademy cofounder Zach] Sims said.

“This is part of our continual belief that the best way to learn is by creating,” Sims said in an email.

And that’s precisely the core goal: helping new programmers get started with building online apps, even if they have almost no programming knowledge. Other launch partners who will also being including lessons on their APIs include Parse, Soundcloud, Sunlight Labs, Placekitten, and Sendgrid.

This is a big part of what the Codecademy turn-users-into-makers movement is focusing on in 2013: helping people create stuff.

And via the Codeacademy announcement:

What can you do with these APIs? Build awesome websites with video with YouTube’s. Shorten links on the fly and grab stats with Bitly’s. Mash up the news with NPR’s. That’s just the beginning - we’ll be adding more APIs soon!

API partners include Youtube, NPR, Bitly, SoundCloud and Parse among others.

If you want to get started with free lessons to learn how to use API’s, jump in here.

horaciogaray:

CLOUDS Interactive Documentary – Exploring creativity through code.

FJP: We’re sold, “People across the planet are dreaming together… it’s like experiencing a documentary in a video game environment.”

NPR News App Team released best practices as GitHub repo

NPR Apps best practices for READMEs, HTML & CSS, Javascript, GIT, and more.

Not only useful for wannabe journo-coders, but also helps you get a sense of NPR tackling traditional journalism issues like style consistency beyond the written copy in the modern technology. And props to them for making it available on GitHub.

lifeandcode:

Interesting…

FJP: Here’s what you keep up with by following GitHub Training:
A listing of current on-line and in-person events
Registration for online classes
Links to office hours
Links to free classes
GitHub training screencasts
External Git educational resources
Other speaking and teaching events the training team does all over Planet Earth
And here’s something from the post that’s equally important about open learning and open source:

We agree with our CEO’s famous dictum that just about everything we do should be open-sourced. To that end, we’ve begun to release our very own training materials for you to use, modify, and share. We’ve got all of our open-source materials up on our beta teach.github.com site. Take a look, fork the repo, and send us a pull request!

lifeandcode:

Interesting…

FJP: Here’s what you keep up with by following GitHub Training:

  • A listing of current on-line and in-person events
  • Registration for online classes
  • Links to office hours
  • Links to free classes
  • GitHub training screencasts
  • External Git educational resources
  • Other speaking and teaching events the training team does all over Planet Earth

And here’s something from the post that’s equally important about open learning and open source:

We agree with our CEO’s famous dictum that just about everything we do should be open-sourced. To that end, we’ve begun to release our very own training materials for you to use, modify, and share. We’ve got all of our open-source materials up on our beta teach.github.com site. Take a look, fork the repo, and send us a pull request!

Source
The Knight-Mozilla OpenNews project has launched Source, a repository of “journalism code” and articles about it.
For example, there’s currently Ruby client for interacting with the New York Times’ campaign finance API and a Guardian Javascript library to manage data behind client-side visualizations.
As OpenNews lead Daniel Sinker describes it on his Tumblr:

Through feature articles that dig into the specifics of the code and the motivations that behind it, through an index to open code repositories produced by the journo-code community, and an index to that community itself, Source connects the many lines of code that make up journalism today with the people that write them. We’ve built relationships between code, people, and organizations deep into the data models of Source because we know that code is always a reflection of the individuals that create it and that those individuals combine to create a thriving community.

Source: Journalism code and the people who make it.

Source

The Knight-Mozilla OpenNews project has launched Source, a repository of “journalism code” and articles about it.

For example, there’s currently Ruby client for interacting with the New York Times’ campaign finance API and a Guardian Javascript library to manage data behind client-side visualizations.

As OpenNews lead Daniel Sinker describes it on his Tumblr:

Through feature articles that dig into the specifics of the code and the motivations that behind it, through an index to open code repositories produced by the journo-code community, and an index to that community itself, Source connects the many lines of code that make up journalism today with the people that write them. We’ve built relationships between code, people, and organizations deep into the data models of Source because we know that code is always a reflection of the individuals that create it and that those individuals combine to create a thriving community.

Source: Journalism code and the people who make it.