Chapter 1

What Is Coding?

IN THIS CHAPTER

check Seeing what code is and what it can do

check Touring your first program using code

check Understanding programming languages used to write code

“A million dollars isn’t cool, you know what’s cool? A billion dollars.”

— SEAN PARKER, The Social Network

Every week the newspapers report on another technology company that has raised capital or sold for millions of dollars. Sometimes, in the case of companies like Instagram, WhatsApp, and Uber, the amount in the headline is for billions of dollars. These articles may pique your curiosity, and you may want to see how code is used to build the applications that experience these financial outcomes. Alternatively, your interests may lie closer to work. Perhaps you work in an industry in decline, like print media, or in a function that technology is rapidly changing, like marketing. Whether you are thinking about switching to a new career or improving your current career, understanding computer programming or “coding” can help with your professional development. Finally, your interest may be more personal — perhaps you have an idea, a burning desire to create something, a website or an app, to solve a problem ...

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