Learning Javascript: Week Two

Week #2 was probably the best week in class I’ve ever had. I liked it because I actually started understanding Javascript. Before, in my Java class, I was confused because I wasn’t sure where things were supposed to go, why they had to go there or what the end result would be. By using the sites below, I was able to finally get it. Repetition really helps me, and Code Academy truly helped me understand.

Javascript Hotline: If you’re desperate for the answer to your Javascript question, look no further. This site has several volunteers on call at all times. For those of you who are shy, they also have a chat room, but, I haven’t had much luck with using it. It’s just nice to know there’s someone out there who can help you. Did I mention it was a free service?

Code Academy: This site is exactly what I was looking for! Code Academy allows you to learn code, type it and check it immediately to see if you’re correct. If you sign up, you can keep track of the progress badges you earn. There’s also a hint button and a forum if you get stuck. You can also learn a few other languages too, like jQuery, PHP, Python & Ruby.

Code Combat: Play a game and learn Javascript too? This site features fast, extensive practice of coding while also playing in a wizarding world. You “cast spells” against your enemies by typing Javascript commands. It’s definitely a change from all the boring textbooks because you finally get involved in the coding and still have fun.

Easy Calculator: One of my projects recently was to create a calculator, and this site, which has a plethora of codes, definitely helped me out. They have a directory and a search bar to help you find the exact code you’re looking for. Some of these are very simplified, so if you just need a starting point, use these and customize to your heart’s content.

On one of my assignments this week, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how to display a calculated result on the page after clicking a button. I had the code and calculations working perfectly; I just couldn’t get it to display. Now, I learned how to do an alert and a document.write, but the assignment called for it to display below the button on the same page. I searched the internet thinking I could find an easy fix, but after 2 days of searching: nothing. I finally caved in and asked my teacher, and he quickly fixed my issue. Notice the last line in the function that says “document.getInfo…”. That line then pointed to a text box at the end of the form field. So simple, yet I couldn’t figure it out.

BMI_code

Click to see the bigger code.

It’s such a great feeling to finally start understanding Javascript. It made my week really pleasant. But when I wasn’t getting it, I really just felt like crying. You try repeatedly to edit your code, test it and nothing. It’s a really hard task, especially if you’re a quitter. But, if you’re like me and want to do whatever it takes to solve the issue, coding is for you. (Also, using Firefox for debugging is helpful too.)