By Mark Niemann-Ross | Thursday, April 23, 2015
Programmers and musicians have similar brains. We’re good at recognizing patterns. We’re persistent. We savor the graceful expression of an idea.
And … we spend a lot of time talking about our tools, rather than the craft. Guitarists will talk for hours about the perfect set of strings or the merits of a ’69 Telecaster. Programmers argue (vehemently!) about the perfect language or where to place a closing brace.
None of that is music or code. Music and code come from thoughtfulness and appreciation of the art. For programmers, this is where computational thinking and the concepts taught in Code Clinic become important.
This year, we’re releasing four new Code Clinics. Let me explain why…
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Wednesday, December 17, 2014
When the Internet first made an appearance, it was nothing more than a collection of fixed web pages. Back then, web pages didn’t use external data to build the dynamic sites we now expect as a daily experience. Incorporating real-time data such as finance, weather, updates from friends or the status of a thermostat changed the Internet from a static library of reference materials into a busy highway of information.
Code Clinic Six challenges our authors to use their language of choice to merge data with a web page template.
We’re starting with files created by James Williamson for chapter nine of his Dreamweaver CC Essential Training course, but instead of manually inserting the data into the page, we’re using code to bring the data and the HTML together.
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Want to work for Google? The company recently published a list of programmer skills it thinks are basic requirements. The list included “Develop strong understanding of algorithms and data structures,” including sorting algorithms—and that’s what the newest Code Clinic is all about.
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Thursday, October 02, 2014
I stupidly accepted a new office next to the printer room.
Other employees would dash into the printer room on their way to a meeting, then curse and pound the copier because it wouldn’t print. I heard them shuffling around and knew it was only moments before they would lean out and ask me for help clearing the paper jam.
This happened five minutes before the hour—every hour—from start to end of business day.
The day they moved the servers into the printer room was the day I moved my office. I was not interested in learning server maintenance, and certainly not interested in rebooting the wifi.
You may not have the option of moving your office—or you may be one of those unfortunates cursing the printer. Possibly you have an IT staff dedicated to helping out—if only you can describe what’s broken.
In all cases, you’ll benefit from learning about servers, networks, and IT in general.
And you’re in luck at lynda.com.
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Every rock star knows a few Chuck Berry guitar licks. Every jazz musician studies the works of Miles Davis. Every classical pianist can play at least one Bach concerto. Eventually, every musician realizes that learning a musical instrument requires studying the masters.
Learning to code is no different. Dissecting well-known pieces of code is a great way to learn time-saving techniques. But many coders simply don’t know what these masterpieces are, or why it’s important to re-code classic problems that have already been solved.
Now, in addition to the wealth of lynda.com programming courses geared towards all levels of experience, we’re diving into computational thinking with our unique Code Clinic courses.
Code Clinic is six courses, each with a different lynda.com author solving a different real-world problem. And each author uses a different programming language to do it.
This month, we’ll examine one of coding’s masterpieces – The Eight Queens Problem.
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Thursday, September 11, 2014
Reach across your desk and pick up a DVD. You’re now holding about 4.7 gigabytes of data.
Now pick up 200 million more DVDs. You’ll need more than two hands to do this—in fact, you’re going to need a bigger room, because you’re now holding the amount of data captured yesterday from financial transactions, emails, recordings, videos, web pages, books and every other information activity. Just yesterday.
Every day, the world collects and stores on hard drives 2.5 quintillion bytes of information—way more data than any human can be expected to make use of, or understand. If only there were a way to filter through this enormous haystack of data and find the exact spec of information needed for a specific reason at the right time….
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Wednesday, August 20, 2014
What is programming really like?
Code Clinic is a series of courses from lynda.com designed to help you understand the process of programming—something called “computational thinking.”
By Mark Niemann-Ross | Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Creating an app for Android, iOS, or Windows means learning two things: a programming language and the SDK. Even if you use one of the cross-platform frameworks, you’ll still need to learn some peculiarities of each system. It requires a significant investment in time and talents—and you’ll have to repeat it to create the same app for a different phone.
lynda.com can help with this learning curve. We’ve created a playlist of three new parallel courses: Building a Note-Taking App for Android, Building a Note-Taking App for iOS, and Building a Note-Taking App for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Store. Together they provide a roadmap for building a cross-platform mobile app.
We’ve built the same app for all three mobile platforms (actually four; Windows Store and Windows Phone are separate), using the same assets and creating the same functionality for each. We enlisted three top-notch authors to show you how they would implement the application on each platform. Our authors shared outlines and met regularly to coordinate their efforts, only making changes when the particular language or SDK demanded it.
To use this set of courses most effectively, start with the platform you know best and review how that author chose to implement the app for your favored SDK and language. Then choose your next device and watch the related course. Feel free to switch back and forth between the two, comparing the platform you know to the platform you’re learning.
Our authors provide you with insights to each platform, pointing out differences that may trip you up if you’re making assumptions based on a different SDK. In the end, you should be able to map your experience from one device to another.
Please be sure to fill out the survey at the end of each course. We’ll read your comments to see how we’re doing and how we can improve.
Interested in more?
• Start a 7-day free trial at lynda.com
• Watch Building a Note-Taking App for Android
• Watch Building a Note-Taking App for iOS
• Watch Building a Note-Taking App for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Store
• All Developer courses at lynda.com
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