As PR Assistants we’re clearly not the most technically-minded people in the office. Being surrounded by Software Engineers it’s easy to get lost trying to keep up with conversations, sometimes quite literally in another language. In hopes of gaining knowledge and understanding a little more of what’s going on around us, Natalie Sneddon and I decided to attempt the basics of coding.

Web Applications is a company dedicated to learning and improvement. We welcomed the Next Gen report published in October, which proposed considerable reform in the ICT curriculum taught in schools; A move away from ‘how to use software’ to ‘how to create software’. The government responded favourably so if they are confident that Key Stage 4 pupils can begin learning to code, perhaps Natalie and I are in with a chance.

Codecademy is a free platform that plans to teach the world to code and can apparently teach people with no coding experience how to program software. Handy for us then! According to Tech Crunch the app has done an excellent job minimising the frustration often associated with writing your first lines of code. Fundamentally it’s an interactive and fun way of learning which is accessible to all.

Javascript is currently the only language taught on Codecademy but Python and Ruby lessons are being developed. The lessons start with teaching the basics of creating and using variables. The steps are explained clearly and there are further hints if you get stuck. While we probably won’t be building any websites, games or apps any time soon, Codecademy aims to take learners to that level.

After earning my first badge for writing my name and doing simple maths, I’m feeling very proud of myself. Clearly we have a long way to go but we’ll report back in a couple of weeks with our progress.

So we’re off to write our next lines of code – Webbies beware, you have competition!