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Five More Learn-to-Code Resources

Previously, I shared my top 5 learn-to-code resources. Today, I have five more resources that have helped me along my coding journey.

6. CSS Tricks – Animation
CSS animation – what can I say? On one hand, it’s an easy and beginner-friendly way to make cool-looking effects. On the other hand, if cross-browser compatibility is important to you, you may want to stick to jQuery for your animation needs. If you do want to dip your toe into the world of CSS animation, though, this page is a great introduction and cheat sheet.

7. How to Center in CSS
The most important piece of knowledge my senior dev dropped on me in the early days was this snippet of css: margin: 0 auto. Maybe 90% of the time, that will give you a nice old-fashioned horizontal center. Centering vertically is a different beast, but suffice it to say, when you’re just starting out, there will be moments when you can’t for the life of you get that thing you’re working with to go in the middle. In those moments, Oliver Zheng has got you covered with this cool tool.

8. Character Entity Reference Chart
When you’re writing text in Microsoft Word, using a special character is as simple as going to Insert > Symbol > Symbol Browser and clicking the one you want. When you’re writing code, it’s as simple as visiting this reference chart and finding the appropriate code. Will you always have to type ! instead of using an exclamation point? No! But in some instances, depending on the language you’re coding in, the browser may read the symbol you want to use instead of displaying it, and in those cases you’ll be glad you have this chart bookmarked.

9. Stack Overflow
Oh, Stack Overflow. Stack Overflow has a rep. As a member of the mailing list, I’ve seen a few emails to the extent of “We’re really trying to convince our community to be nicer, please oh please be freakin’ KIND!” If you’ve never heard of Stack Overflow, it’s basically a forum where users ask questions and post code snippets for others to comment and help them resolve issues. Some people are very kind and patient with their answers, and some people… aren’t. When you run into an issue or question while coding, you can probably find your answer by browsing Stack Overflow – especially in the beginning, 99.9% of what you encounter will have been encountered by another dev before you. The trick is finding which posts – and sometimes elements of posts – are relevant to your situation and ignoring the rest. It’s kind of a jungle out there, but if you’re like me and find yourself ping-ponging from one obstacle to the next, you’ll soon feel right at home on Stack Overflow.

10. Documentation
Documentation is to coding languages as instruction manual is to IKEA furniture: detailed directions on how to construct it. When you’re just starting out, a lot of the documentation may sail over your head – that’s okay! It’s still a great way to expose yourself to the vocabulary of coding. Plus, the more you learn, the more sense it will make, and you’ll be able to track your progress in terms of how much more you understand when reading documentation.

What did I miss? Share your favorite learn-to-code resources in the comments!

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[Photo credit: Jesus Kiteque via Unsplash]

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