An Intro to Coding

This series will serve as an introduction to coding.

It is not meant to be an in-depth guide, but rather an overview of the building blocks. We'll cover the very basics of coding such as variables and functions.

We won’t cover any advanced or language-specific features.

For more guides and tutorials, download the Enki app.

If you want to learn to code, this course is the best place to start, before digging later into your language(s) of choice.

We'll cover the core features everyone should know before starting to program. And we'll emphasize a few key themes and tools that'll be useful as you learn.

All programming languages have a handful of building blocks. When combined, they can create any program:

  • variables - where data is stored
  • data types - how to tell what's a number or what's text
  • functions - how we can organize commands
  • conditions - how to makes yes/no decisions
  • loops - how to repeat behavior

Every concept, feature, technology, or best practice beyond these basic building blocks were invented to help us mere humans manage the complexity of larger and larger programs.

Why learn to code?

Learning how code works isn't only for developers - it can help everyone!

For example, you'll be able to:

  • write programs that automate processes and save you time (and money!)
  • create websites for your products or projects
  • understand how software works, helping to improve your communication and decision making at work
  • better navigate the modern digital world
  • collaborate with developers better

At the end of the day, it will help to maximize your earning potential!

Hello Code?

For the rest of these posts, we'll use our own made-up¹ language to paint the picture of how programs behave and what you can do with them.

We'll be using a made-up language on purpose.

The point of every program we show from now on will be to demonstrate a concept. Don't worry too much about specific commands and focus on the big picture.

Understanding the fundamentals will enable you to pick up any real programming language later on.

When you finish this course and move on to specific programming languages, you'll be taught that language's syntax² but the concepts will remain the same.

What's your goal?

At the end of this course, you'll have several options for the next step to take.

Here are some suggestions from Enki:

  • Python is a popular language for beginners. It's easy to read, has a large community, and can be used for almost anything.
  • SQL is a querying language³ and a good option as a stepping stone to learning programming languages and analyzing data⁴.
  • If you want to start by making a website, make sure you go through our Web course (which includes HTML and CSS).

Footnotes

[1] Pseudocode is an informal high-level description of the operating principle of a computer program.

In layman's terms, it's a way of writing code to explain an idea without worrying about the specific language rules.

[2] The syntax is the set of rules that define how a program will be written and interpreted. It covers the symbols, indentation, and keywords of the language. All programming languages use a different syntax.

[3] A querying language is a specialized programming language that is used to communicate with a database.

It can be used to retrieve information and alter the contents of the database.

[4] If you're interested in analyzing data you should check out our Data Analysis topic in the Enki app.

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