Mar 242012

Looking for an easy way to begin learning JavaScript?  Let’s face it, learning to program on your own in any language can be an ordeal.

If you are anything like me your process looks like this:

  1. Become interested in a new programming language
  2. Buy book
  3. Fall asleep 10 minutes into reading on  multiple nights trying to read your book in bed.
  4. Spend 2343234 days setting up a server, IDE, etc.
  5. Seek some tutorials online
  6. Write some test code
  7. Get distracted

If the process above looks anything like what you’ve gone through you aren’t alone.  Lucky for us there is a new site called Codeacademy.

Codeacademy takes a new approach to teaching programming skills that puts an emphasis on making a game out of the whole process.

Through points, achievements, and lessons Codeacademy guides rookie JavaScript programmers through many of the fundamental concepts of the language.

codeacademy achievements

Almost looks like Xbox Live!

Where Codeacademy really shines is its user interface.  Simple and easy to use, the layout consists of three areas: the lesson, code window, and console window.  Not having to set up a server or upload files makes coding JavaScript fun and easy.

Codeacademy gives snippets of code throughout it’s lessons to help you along the way.   Through repetition they cover many basic programming fundamentals.  Their editor and console gently guide you into proper syntax rather than just giving you a hard error.

If you get stuck in any lesson there is even a help section where others can help you through the problem.

I’ve hacked my way through JavaScript in the past to get things working on websites but I can honestly say Codeacademy has increased my comfort with the language.  I’m about halfway through their lessons and I’m excited to finish!

So what are you waiting for?  Head on over to and give it a try!

If you’ve tried Codeacademy let me know your thoughts below.  Please feel free to share any other programming resources you love.



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