Learning to Code: Animating my name

I’ve always wanted to learn how to code, and I mean really code. I remember the days of basic HTML and feeling so smart for knowing how to type a line break. However, these days, I’m all but lost in the coding world. With the help of codeacademy.com I was able to learn the basics, and animate my name! 


The hardest part about learning code, in my opinion, is just not knowing where to begin. Before I began this lesson, I honestly didn’t have the slightest idea of how coding works. I appreciate how the lesson begins by explaining the language of JavaScript, and how it reads as commands to a computer. By then establishing what strings are, I was able to do basic arithmetic and counting, and see the computer react to my code – which was embarrassingly exciting. Once I saw it respond to multiple 2*2, I knew what I was doing what actually working.

From there, I learned about Booleans, which absolutely terrified me at first, and onto variables. Variables I found easiest to understand, as they are pretty straight forward. Variables include things like my name, “Lexi” and eventually will contain the colors that I used, giving the strings case sensitive names.

Arrays are where it really started getting exciting. I could easily figure out how to change the color to just blue, but once I figured out arrays, I was able to link my name to a variety of rainbow colors, which was identified by numbers in the arrays. My biggest problem at this step was remembering to type “var” to begin the variable which would connect the lettercolor string to my array of colors.

When it came time to change the bubble shape and add in the “bounce” string, I felt like a full blown code monkey, and even better yet, I was able to look back at the code I created and understand the commands each line were translating to the computer. Although I still have some questions on how it knew what “bounce” meant – when I changed bouncename to bouncebubbles, I felt so accomplished.

Altogether, I think I will continue to use codeacademy.com to learn more about coding. The tutorials are easy to understand, and it only took me about 20 minutes to learn a basic animation code – something I would have expected to take hours.


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