I’ve been coding on and off as a hobbyist for approximately 18 years now, which is a terrifying idea. I rarely make anything that I put out there, mostly tinkering for my own fun and amusement. However, over the years, I’ve seen an influx of amazing resources. When I first started, there weren’t many good websites out there – You usually had to buy big, heavy books to get anywhere in development. Now-a-days, all you have to do is a quick Google search and away you go. But these websites are my absolute go to’s for anything to do with coding. Come share your favourites with us!
This was the first website that I really took to, Codecademy is a genuinely well put together website which combines learning with gamification. Furthermore, they take the idea of specialisation and taking it as far as they can. They put together specific courses to get you on track to become a web developer, or an SQL developer – And so on. The bredth of courses available on Codecademy is always a sight to behold. Furthermore, similar to what we’re doing on our new website in the making, Codecademy likes to give out badges for users completing specific tasks, such as completing a course.
SoloLearn is amazing – I originally found out on the Google Play Store and in all honesty, this is more like a community than Codecademy, but less of one than Stack Overflow. It gives you tasks to complete, courses to learn from and in between everything, you can chat to other users. I once left a comment on a post, which has garnered a number of likes – The comment was in response to a comment, asking why the bit we were working on wasn’t actually an infinate loop. People who have gone onto that part have seen my comment, which dissected the information in full – And people seem to appreciate it.
By it combining the resources that Codecademy offers, in the form of courses and tasks for you to complete, along with the community spirit, I find SoloLearn to be a wonderful resource. If you’ve got a few minutes and want to learn to develop, along with seeing what other people have to say, SoloLearn is great. I find it strange it’s called SoloLearn when there’s such a strong community spirit involved, but couple the resources with the tasks and you’ve got yourself an excellent resource website.
You’ve probably bumped into this one, even without realising. I’m a huge fan of the idea behind Stack Overflow; a community-based Q&A. Part of the Stack Exchange network, which includes other amazing Q&A sites, such as AskUbuntu which I got quite involved with. Stack Overflow is basically a place where, if you have a question relating to code, you type up the question, stick a few tags on it and away you go. Your question will be reviewed by moderators, who’ll make sure it goes to the right place. They’ll also check to see if it’s a duplicate question, to which you’ll be pointed to the duplicate and so on.
Just about every coder out there will run into Stack Overflow at some points in their career; whether it’s hobbyist or it’s serious. The best part of Stack Overflow (and indeed Stack Exchange) is the information is very good. By going directly to other developers, you get past a lot of the waffle and end up with a clear answer. There’s a drawback to this style of community, which is simply that you can have a question which you think is answered, but then the slightest variable, no pun intended, can completely throw you off. Nevertheless, never forget this website, as there’s no doubt you’ll need to go onto it at some point.
Now it’s over to you – Have I mentioned your favourite coding resource website, or are there better ones out there? Share your thoughts in the comments below, or over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.