Coding is both a science and an art – and it takes an incredible amount of focus and dedication to be able to learn it, hone it and apply it. Of course, coding requires skills in mathematics and logic; however, on a personal level, there are additional skills that are essential. Read on for the top 4 skills all coders must have.

Confidence.

The code you write is the basis for something amazing – that, alone, should inspire confidence. But what comes first? The final result or the confidence? That’s an easy answer: the confidence! You must believe in yourself and your ability to create and program – as this is what will propel you forward toward success.

Patience.

Phenomenal websites and video games aren’t created in one day. Or two. Or three… Creating anything takes time – and patience. Don’t be too hard on yourself, and give yourself plenty of time to focus before a deadline. Once you have it down, coding may feel like a breeze – but it will always require some element of patience.

Adaptability.

Inevitably, along the way, you’ll encounter errors or challenges, and you have to be able to inhale, exhale and keep moving forward. Whether you’re working on a homework assignment or a massive project for your biggest client, the ability to adapt to situations and changes is key in any realm of technology. As technology advances and evolves, so must you.

Memory.

Having a good memory can serve you well when trying to remember where you parked the car or left your phone last, but it’s essential – not just useful – for a coder. The foundation for all actions you take when creating code lies within your ability to remember computer languages and techniques.

Confidence, patience, adaptability and memory are key components of a fantastic coder. However, not every coding expert was born with an innate ability in all 4 of these skills. You know the phrase “practice makes perfect?” It’s not only for multiplication tables and hobbies – it’s also for self-improvement and personal growth. Take time to hone these 4 soft skills – there’s no better moment to start than now.

Front-end web development is also known as client-side development. It is the practice of converting data to a graphical interface for users to view and interact with through a digital platform.

A front-end developer develops and designs websites and applications using web tools and technologies (i.e. HTML, CSS, and JavaScript).

Here are some of the necessary skills:

HTML and CSS

HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is one of the most essential components of web coding. It’s the standard markup language that’s used to create websites and applications. Basically, it indicates how text can be displayed as images, tables, links, and, of course, text.

Source: www.w3schools.com

CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a stylesheet language used to describe how the HTML components are displayed. CSS creates the actual viewable design.

Source: www.w3schools.com

HTML = Content
CSS = How the content is displayed

Together HTML and CSS are the backbone of any website development process. Without these, a designed web page would not exist.

JavaScript

JavaScript is an event-based programming language that creates an interactive element on web pages and applications. It is used to transform a static HTML page into a dynamic interface. In other words, JavaScript allows the user to manipulate something on the webpage — without having to reload. Examples of JavaScript include calculators, animated graphics, interactive maps and content updates.

Source: www.w3schools.com

 

Utilizing HTML, CSS and JavaScript are essential for individuals who love coding — or who are seeking a career in web development.

Working on the computer – particularly with coding – within technology-heavy fields can be enthralling and offer an array of incredible, revolutionary opportunities. Software engineers, web developers, video game designers and IT security specialists are several of the numerous careers that are becoming essential in modern society – and also happen to require extensive time spent using technology. Are you considering a career utilizing computers, coding and technology? Read on for our top tips for computer-centric professionals.

1. Take set, purposeful breaks.

In any career, it’s important that you take time to reflect and – honestly – relax! However, in a computer-centric career, it’s even more essential that you set time where you can give your mind and eyes a break. In addition to your lunch hour and inevitable few trips to the bathroom, take a few moments to stand up, stretch, look around and allow yourself to “reboot.” Plus, here’s a fun tip: If you have been sitting for a long period of time, stand up and work while standing for 15-30 minutes.

2. Purchase a pair of computer glasses.

Anyone who spends hours upon hours in front of a screen will swear by the incredibility of computer glasses – which protect your eyes from the harmful glow of your technology. Of course, a small amount of time won’t hurt your vision, but – eventually – staring at the computer will cause your eyes to strain, leading to headaches. Computer glasses help to curb this problem (with a stylish touch).

3. Place a stool under your feet to give your legs a rest.

This is an especially important tip if your feet don’t reach the ground or need to stretch a bit to rest flat. Placing a stool or bin for your feet helps take the strain off of your upper legs and improves circulation.

4. Line padding for your wrists on your desk or keyboard.

If you love computers, you’ve probably heard of the ailment “carpal tunnel.” It’s a painful condition characterized by an annoying tingling sensation, and typically occurs due too way too much typing without support. Padding can help make for a more comfortable workspace.

5. Invest in a high-quality chair with lumbar support.

While it’s great to stand up and stretch, it’s also expected that you’ll be frequently sitting. So, ensure that your chair is a perfect fit for you – and, no, we don’t just mean in its design! (Though, if you want some cool stripes up the side, go for it.) Find a chair that specifically has special lumbar support to keep your back and bottom healthy and strong.

Technology has offered immeasurable possibilities for businesses, gamers, shoppers, patients and the world overall. Despite our strides toward automation and orchestration, at the heart of it all, there is still a human at the other end making it all possible – which is why it’s important to remember to take care of yourself as you live out your dream in a computer-centric career.

The acronym “STEM” is very common in the world of education, and it stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. It’s an important part of every child’s education, but it doesn’t only matter to children – it should matter to everyone. The more you understand STEM education, the better prepared you’ll be to make the right decisions regarding your child’s education.

Here are some reasons why we should encourage enrollment and development in these topics:

Innovation supports the economy.

We’re all observing the technology boom happening before us. New gadgets are popping up every week and keeping up with the trends has proved challenging for many. However, these trends are important because they help boost the economy and create jobs. We need talented and skillful STEM experts to develop the next vaccine, disease cure, or antibiotic. We also need developers and engineers in order to come up with the next generation of phones, cars, and computers.

Introducing girls to explore tech in school will help bridge the gender gap.

There is a disparity among men and women in the STEM industries like tech, development, engineering, and medicine. According to Fortune, women only make up about 1/3 of the workforce in the biggest tech companies (like Microsoft, Google, and Facebook).

That gap only gets wider if you evaluate the numbers regarding leadership positions. According to Deloitte, only about 25% of IT roles are led by women and only 17% of female college graduates are in IT-related fields. If we give girls more opportunities to explore STEM when they’re children, more will take interest and make careers out of their talents.

Studying STEM leads to the development of other important skills.

We’ve discussed the more long-term effects of STEM education initiatives, but we should talk about how this branch of education can directly help today’s youth. Mastering STEM skills will lead to the development of practical soft skills. For example, in STEM programming, students create their own research questions. They then follow an investigative process that encourages them to evaluate multiple perspectives and connect concepts in order to fix a problem.

There are many different processes kids can learn from studying STEM, and the best part is that they can learn to collaborate with their peers by comparing their in-class research and working together to solve problems presented to them.

While we do teach STEM in schools, taking initiatives to further encourage interest and passion will promote equality and innovation in our future. Plus, engaging in fun activities centered around STEM education is a great way to bond with your child.

By Mira B., Age 14

Many people use social media apps such as Instagram or Snapchat, which have face filters for people to take and post pictures of themselves. But many people do not realize how these filters are created and the technology behind how they fit people’s faces almost perfectly. The mechanics behind face filters was originally created by a Ukrainian company called Looksery; they used the technology to photoshop faces during video chats. Snapchat bought their algorithm, called the Viola-Jones algorithm, and created the face filters seen in many social media apps today.

Creating face filters is more difficult than you may think, so I’ll break it down into five key steps:

The first step is face detection. The image is initially viewed in ones and zeros, so the algorithm scans the image, looking specifically for color patterns. This can include finding that the cheek is lighter than the eye or that the nose bridge is lighter than surrounding areas. After detecting these patterns, a face can be distinguished in the camera.

The second step is the landmark extraction. Using specific algorithms in a 2D image, facial features such as the chin, nose, forehead, etc are determined.

The third step is face alignment. The coordinates of landmarks on people’s faces are taken to properly fit the filter to a particular face.

The fourth step is 3D mesh. Using the 2D image, a 3D model of the user’s face is built to fit the filter animation to a specific face.

The last step is face tracking, which approximates and locates the 3D mask in real time. This allows the user to move their face without the filter disappearing or moving to an incorrect location.

Another way to think of these steps is to imagine a human body. The landmarks identified in a 2D image serve as the skeleton for the future mask. Similar to how bodies differ in shape, so do people’s face structures. Using face alignment, the filter matches with the coordinates of landmarks from a certain face. People’s skin makes them look the way they are and 3D mesh step is like aligning the skin to the skeleton. Similar to how bodies move while keeping the skeleton, skin and muscle together, face tracking follows the face to make sure the filter stays on the right coordinates.