Coding is a complex vocabulary that can be difficult to learn but is necessary for the operation of nearly all electronic devices. Coding can be created in a variety of different programming languages that will provide machines and computers with the instructions they require to perform various actions. With coding, it’s possible to create mobile applications, operating systems, and programs of all types. Web pages are also created with programming languages like HTML, which determines how documents are displayed within a web browser.

Some of the additional coding languages that are popular among programmers include PHP, JavaScript, Java, C++, Ruby, and Python. Along with HTML, JavaScript is used for front-end development. This language helps to convert static HTML elements into complex features like interactive maps and instant content updates. Other languages like Ruby and C++ are general purpose languages that can be used for the back-end development of many different applications and programs.

All computers have a language known as machine code that tells the computers what tasks they should perform. This code is typically displayed in letters, numbers, and symbols. While learning machine code is possible, it’s also time-consuming and very difficult, which is why it’s important to use a programming language. With a programming language, the code you write will be compiled into machine code that the computer will be able to understand. The computer will then execute the code and provide you with the intended results.

Keep in mind that the scripts you create can’t do anything if they aren’t integrated into programs. When you compile script into a program, the program you create can then be used by people. The machine code will be stored directly within the program, after which any user can download the program and access its features. These programs can be applications, websites, and games. No matter the type of program you wish to create, it’s important that you understand what coding is, which is explained further in the following article.

Key Takeaways:

  • Coding is a complex vocabulary consisting of letters, numbers, and symbols that can be used with nearly all electronic devices.
  • Computer code is used to directly communicate with a computer to perform numerous tasks that a developer implements.
  • Our article discusses the most popular coding techniques, vocabulary to understand before coding, and resources for learning how to code!

Where and What is Computer Code Used For?

Computer code is used for the purpose of communicating directly with computers. Without machine code, computers would not be able to function properly and complete the tasks that a user typically performs on a computer. When a programmer writes coding into a computer or program, the computer will then know what types of tasks to complete. Along with computers and other electronic devices, computer code is used to properly program the applications and websites that people visit every day.

When you shop on Amazon or go to ESPN for the latest NFL scores, every facet of the website works because of the coding that’s placed into the program. Many of the errors and problems that can occur on a website take place because of an issue with the coding. The placement of an incorrect symbol or letter can immediately damage the functionality of a website.

Computers are comprised of numerous transistors, which are basically on and off switches. Binary code that consists of ones and zeros dictates whether the switch is turned off or on. While a zero turns the switch off, a one turns the switch on. A computer can be comprised of thousands of transistors that allow different functions to be completed. Every transistor will be switched on or off when using a program, which allows for some simple computing.

If someone attempted to make an entire computer function with transistors, the work needed to do so would be laborious and exceedingly time-consuming, which is where programming languages come into play. These languages expedite the process by addressing whole sections of transistors when needing to perform various tasks. Coding is typically performed by network administrators, database administrators, and web developers. If you want to have a website designed for your business, it’s important that you choose a develop who understands coding and the various programming languages that are necessary for development.

How Does Code Translate Into Software or Websites?

There are many different programming languages that can be used to convert code into software or websites, which include everything from JavaScript to C++. The most popular programming languages include:

JavaScript

This is a programming language that gives you the ability to place complex features onto different web pages, which means that static information can be turned into 2D graphics, interactive maps, and other features that make the website more engaging.

Python

This is a high-level programming language that focuses on code readability by displaying a high amount of white space.

Ruby

This is a dynamic programming language that emphasizes productivity and simplicity.

C++

This is considered to be a mid-level programming language with a focus on system programming and design highlights like performance and flexibility, which is why it’s commonly used for the development of video games, software infrastructure, and desktop applications.

PHP

This is a fast and streamlined scripting language that’s mainly used for web development.

HTML

This is a markup language that’s used for front-end development for the purpose of displaying documents within a web browser, which means that this language dictates how text, lists, quotes, headings, and paragraphs appear on the page.

These languages are basically divided into low-level languages and high-level languages. Programming languages like C++ and Python are considered to be high-level languages.

These languages are easy for programmers to understand and can run on all platforms. On the other hand, low-level languages are considered to be machine-friendly and are very difficult to understand. Because of how high-level languages simplify programming, low-level languages are rarely used by modern developers.

Basic Coding Vocabulary

If you want to learn the basics of coding, there are some simple terms that you should be aware of. It’s helpful to brush up on these terms before you start learning coding, which should make it easier for you to understand the study materials that you’re presented with. The general coding and development terms that you should be aware of include:

  • Client – The device that accesses the website, which could be anything from a smartphone to a desktop computer
  • Server – The computer that’s meant to host the website code and eventually serve this code to the client’s computer
  • Designer – A professional who creates the appearance and interactivity of the website, which means that the designer is in charge of creating the swiping, clicking, and scrolling elements of the site
  • Developer – An individual who’s responsible for writing the code that allows the website to be functional
  • Wireframe – An illustration by the designer that displays website layouts, color schemes, and images
  • Front-end – This aspect of a website includes everything that the user sees and can interact with, which is why front-end developers work with JavaScript, HTML, and CSS when creating the appearance of a website
  • Back-end – The things that happen in the background for a website, which can include retrieving user data and logging in current customers

If you work with back-end languages like Ruby and Python, keep in mind that frameworks are available that make these languages easier to implement. For instance, Rails simplifies the creation of web pages with Ruby. For front-end languages, it’s important that you understand the “function” term, which refers to any name you give for groups of programming statements. These names can be referenced later on in development.

Where to Learn How To Code

The resources for learning how to code are everywhere and are in abundance with online websites such as Treehouse. You can take a look at W3Schools for extensive lessons on all of the popular programming languages. There are also an endless number of apps on smartphones and tablets that can help you learn coding regardless of where you are or what you’re doing.

The length of time it takes to learn coding depends on the type of language that you wish to learn. While coding boot camps and college degrees offer structured lessons, learning coding skills on your own can be more time-consuming. For basic programming languages like HTML and JavaScript, you can learn the language in around 4-6 months. More difficult languages like Ruby and Python may take upwards of 6-12 months to fully grasp.

There are a myriad of benefits that come with learning how to code, the primary of which is that you will be able to alter basic elements of your website or application without needing to go through the process of hiring a developer or designer. Learning code can also provide you with a new perspective on how to solve problems, which may prove to be invaluable in your life. If ever a component of your website stops functioning properly, understanding the basics of coding may be all you require to fix the issue yourself. For more severe problems that affect the back-end aspect of your website, you may want to hire a professional developer to reduce the possibility that you make a significant mistake.

Bryan Miller of Bryt Designs Long Beach Web Design, Development, & SEO
Author
Bryan Miller

Bryan Miller is an entrepreneur and web enthusiast specializing in web design, development and digital marketing. He is a recent graduate of the MBA program at the University of California, Irvine. Feel free to send Bryan a message here.

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