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Programming during quarantine

Programming during quarantine

Udemy’s Introduction to Python course. Taken by author.

Covid-19 has a major impact on the economy today such that many nations, including Sri Lanka, are on lock down. Other than that, IB exams are also cancelled which completely changed my day to day schedule. Although we have distance-learning in which we are finishing up the remaining IB courses and showing our engagement to learning, I wanted to use this time in learning a new skill of programming, more specifically coding. Coding is one of the skills highly necessary for the upcoming time in future, it always has been an important skill set and is expected to grow even further in the future due to the increase in technologies. Nowadays most university students studying engineering (regardless of branch) learn coding either self-taught or extra classes in their years because the demand for at least basic coding skills are high in the industry. I will be pursuing an engineering degree in university, and since I have some time left, I wanted to learn the basics of coding before beginning university as it will be helpful during that time. I do have some experience with coding, such that I developed the Recycling and Sustainability website, click here to view, however this website is quite basic and now I want to further learn more into coding by taking online classes and possibly develop a more dynamic website by the end of the school year.

I am currently enrolled with Udemy and learning introduction to Python programming language through which I will also learn basic and intermediate level in coding. I’ve just begun this course and I’m expecting to complete the course by mid-May. The videos are not very long but I also wanted to spend some time on practical coding when I learn new content, therefore I’ve given myself a long time to accomplish this skill set. I use Atom (code editor) for practicing coding. I do want to have a knowledge about coding and different programming languages but I think I will learn more when I practice coding myself rather than watching videos.

Atom code editor. Taken by author.

During the quarantine, I have sufficient time to learn coding and start developing a new and more dynamic website. I’m currently on ‘Arithmetic Operators’ of Python programming course which are the use of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and other binary operators, and until now I’ve learned mostly setting up python language. Now I will be moving into ‘Placeholder and Strings’ which deals with percentage operations. Soon after a few more beginning videos, I will move into the next step of ‘Relational and Logical operators’ which are lengthy codes used such as ‘true false’ statements, relation statements, etc. from this stage onward the course gets more into designing programs.  Although I created my service website using HTML, I chose to learn Python language first because it was much simpler to understand then HTML because it’s an object-oriented programming language and also due to its ease in coding, language, elements, shortcuts, etc. I think after learning Python at an intermediate level, I will be more prepared in learning a more challenging programming language such as Java script and be able to create more developed contents and programs in future.

Udemy’s Introduction video to Python course. Taken by author.

I think I’ve chosen the correct skill set to learn during quarantine because all assignments, practical, and learning, can be done from home. It’s one of the sufficient skills set to be acquired at this time and very useful as well. Although I’m not studying computer science in university, but nowadays basic programming is required and expected in the industry. Therefore learning introduction to programming will be an advantage when I begin university this year. There are still some workloads from distance learning which will continue till 27th, till then I have given a small time frame on this learning but from May I will be focusing more on this course and possibly begin a new project on developing a new website.


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