blog / hello-world

Hello World

July 28, 2016


I love coding.

I’ve been coding since high school (so, uh, over ten years now). Coding opened up new worlds to me. Not (just) worlds of ones and zeroes, but worlds of creativity, beauty, art, and just plain fun.

Learning how to program took me down a path that allowed me to express myself, to better understand the world around me, to explore stuff I otherwise wouldn’t be able to explore. (Not to mention get a job that pays the bills.)

That might sound a bit lofty, but my point is that programming is much more than the ones-and-zeroes that people think it is.

How do I learn how to program?

A lot of people (both online and in real life) ask me this question. Maybe they want to create an app, or get a job, or make some art, and coding helps with all of that. I’m starting Happy Coding as my answer to that question.

Changing Face of Computer Science

One of the exciting things about computer science is how fast it’s changing: not just the technology behind it, but also the people involved.

Not long ago, computer science was seen as nerdy, or only for a certain type of person. On top of that, you had to be privileged enough to have access to a computer (which wasn’t true for most people!), and you had to have enough spare time to devote to learning it outside of your other responsibilities and interests.

But since then, computer science has changed. Now, pretty much everybody carries around a computer that’s more powerful than the computer that took us to the moon. We interact with computers every day (or every hour or even every minute). You no longer have to be a “typical” nerd, or come from a particularly privileged background, to learn about programming.

This site is for you.

Aren’t you the Static Void Games guy?

Yep. Back in 2012 or so, I started Static Void Games as a place to put my own little Java applets. Soon other people started using it, and the site grew to include over 100 games. But over time, Static Void Games became less useful as Java applets went the way of the dinosaur. I added support for JavaScript games, but by then other people (like Game Jolt and itch.io) were already doing a great job at that.

So I decided to shift my focus away from maintaining the uploader part of Static Void Games, and more towards creating tutorials and example code. Instead of trying to shoehorn new stuff into the old site (most of which wasn’t really used anymore), I decided to start over with a new site- and Happy Coding was born!

What does “Happy Coding” mean?

I first stole heard it from my high school programming teacher. Saying “happy coding” is a little like saying “happy hunting” - it’s a way of wishing good luck to somebody. “I heard you have a big programming project tonight. Happy coding!”

But more than that, I’m trying to invoke a “Bob Ross” style of programming. Programming isn’t always an exact science or a precise math. It’s more an art :art: or a craft than people realize. It involves making a ton of mistakes, and that’s okay! Those mistakes make the process unique to you, and they can actually be a good thing by surprising you or just making you a better programmer.

What’s next?

I’ve already started writing up the basic tutorials that take you from the basics to more complicated topics in computer science. From here I want to add a bunch of example code, and then from there it’s a matter of adding more tutorials on html, JavaScript, libGDX, Android, you name it! I’d also like to add a forum, but that’s another post for another day.

Until then…….. Happy Coding!

:turtle: