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Online Resources Make Learning to Code More Accessible

By Aaron Harris, Entrepreneurship support staff at Arkansas Capital Corporation

Coding is a term that is tossed around a lot these days. What exactly is coding? For most of us, it is somewhat intimidating, probably because we aren’t exactly sure what all the word entails. We know it is important, has something to do with computers and that we can’t do it. Coding is defined as the process of designing, writing, testing, debugging / troubleshooting, and maintaining the source code of computer programs. Which sounds hard and it very well can be, but thanks to the internet and all the awesome, available resources out there, non-coders can now teach themselves at least the basics of this increasingly critical skill.

As small business owners and entrepreneurs, often having at least a grasp of each facet that contributes to the success or failure of your business can be helpful. Given how important an online presence is in today’s marketplace whether it be in the form of a website, social media or some combination of both, dropping some coding knowledge on yourself can only be a good thing. In an article titled “Learn to Code for Free With These 10 Online Resources”, the guys at Mashable have given us an extremely easy entry point to starting gaining some of this knowledge. Below is the list of resources, some are easier to use than others, while some contain more advanced content. Click through the options and see which one best fits what you’re trying to learn.

  • Code/Racer – An online racing game that forces you to learn to code quickly as part of the game. Part of the Treehouse program which offers an additional 650 lessons on their site.
  • MIT OpenCourseWare - MIT has opened all of its course content to the web. Taking classes from one of the most prestigious universities in the world for free? That’s a win/win situation.              
  • Udacity – Udacity is attempting to change the way education works. They believe education should be a lifelong process and have put tons of content out there for people to use.
  • Mozilla Developer Network – MDN is a wiki that has resources for all skill levels. It contains many different documents related to web development.
  • The CodePlayer – Here you can watch interactive presentations on how people build things from scratch. Once you gain some knowledge, you can start putting up your own presentations.
  • Coursera – Coursera aggregates content from top universities around the world and makes them available in several different languages.
  • Codeacademy – Codeacademy focuses solely on teaching coding in one of eight tracks: APIs, Ruby, Python, JavaScript, jQuery, PHP, web fundamentals, or combining languages into projects.
  • Khan Academy – Brings millions of students together in one place to learn about everything from coding to government.
  • Learn Python the Hard Way – Giving away PDFs of their content, but charging $29 for video lessons, Learn Python the Hard Way doesn’t allow students to copy and paste, hence making it the hard way.
  • HTML5 Rocks – A one stop guide for learning HTML5, contains content written by people who work for Google, Adobe, etc. You learn from slides, presentations and videos.

As you can see, there are plenty or resources out there to gain lots of knowledge on a variety of different topics. Not sure exactly where to start? Check this post for some need to know basics on coding.

Content contributed by Aaron Harris, ARKSourceLink
AKSourceLink is a proud affiliate of
U.S.SourceLink, America’s largest resource network for entrepreneurs.