Coding: An Art or a Science?

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Traditionally, people have been defined as leaning toward one of two mindsets, either logical or creative. In a world where every aspect of life is changing with technology, it’s no wonder that the lines between science and art are blurred – especially when it comes to coding.  

On the surface, coding looks like a science. Complex arrangements of seemingly unrelated characters form lines of code that carry out a specific process. These processes help machines function, make websites operational, help design video games, and even assist in the study of the human body.

The skills required to create the code for these systems and machines are also the same that make a good scientist, including the ability to carry out research, conduct trial-and-error experiments, and interpret data. A good deal of coding also involves math, and students who are good at math can usually begin coding with relative ease.

The intersection of art and science is marked by the relevant skills needed for both fields, this is where the two share similar characteristics. 

Artists research techniques, conduct trial-and-error experiments with their work, and even use a bit of math when mixing mediums, designing strategically or calculating the amount of supplies needed.

Attention to detail is a skill that’s required in coding and art. Searching for problem areas in a painting is like scanning lines of code for a misplaced character.

This example in particular tell us a lot about the similarity between art and science. All the little parts that make up the scientific or artistic process come together to form something bigger in the end. Little pieces of tile form a mosaic, several drops of chemicals cause a reaction, and lines of code form what we see on the screen.

Imagine that you’ve been painting your whole life with access to only two types of brushes. Then, one day, a package arrives at your home filled with brushes, sponges, solvents, and other supplies. Now you can apply your talent to even more projects than before. Coding languages are like that new set of supplies, giving you the ability to manufacture, design, and present almost anything you want.  Basically, coding can unlock your creative potential in ways you never thought possible.

So, in a way, coding is the art of science.

That’s what makes learning to code such a valuable experience, since it gives you a new outlet to utilize your strengths. Whether you love science, or are passionate about art, coding is a skill that can take your life to new heights.

4 Soft Skills That Are Honed By Coding

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Coding is more than an incredible hobby – it’s a skill that you can feel proud to learn. When mastered, coding can lead to career development opportunities in an array of fields. However, in addition to improving future job qualifications, coding also improves your personal development by helping you acquire necessary soft skills. Read on to learn 4 soft skills that are honed by coding.

 

Teamwork

 

You start developing many skills the moment you begin learning to code in a classroom environment. Working with instructors, asking questions, and taking feedback with a good attitude all require teamwork. Once you go into the workplace, you will no doubt be assigned projects that call for collaboration between other coders, outside departments, and even hired contractors.

 

One aspect of learning to code that’s attractive for many people is the potential to work from home, but even then, you will have to maintain contact with co-workers to ensure you’re all on the same page.

 

Creativity

 

The perception of programmers portrayed by the media is often a distorted one, usually a math wiz in a basement placed in front several monitors typing away robotically. Don’t get us wrong, there’s lots of math involved and double monitors rule but the creativity it takes to code really does go unnoticed. The reason your creativity expands when you learn to code is because you begin to possess the tools to build almost anything you want, whether you learn to build video games, virtual reality programs, robots or websites, the possibilities are endless.

 

Critical Thinking

 

Coding can involve an onslaught of information at once, especially if you’re just beginning your education. Over time, your ability to not only understand the information on the screen, but also develop solutions based off that data will improve. There are tons of resources out there for solving coding problems, but in the professional world, problems may arise that have no existing solutions. Analyzing lines of code to locate the exact location of an error, or piece that can be modified for a specific action takes critical thinking skills that can be honed over time.

 

You will get to a point where you can solve problems quickly, but this will take time and something else…

 

Patience

Learning to code is like learning to play an instrument, except where you’d drive yourself crazy trying to extend your pinky to the 7th fret, you’ll instead be tempted to smash your keyboard while attempting to change a color or font size on the screen. Coding can be frustrating at first and takes practice to understand fully – and with technology and programming languages constantly evolving, you’ll truly never fully perfect it. But, you can have the patience to learn new things, no matter how challenging they are.

 

The road to coding mastery is one filled with ups and downs, but the rewards that come with it will soon show on your screen and within yourself.

6 Tips to Help You Focus While Studying

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It’s 11:57 at night, you have a huge test tomorrow morning, and you’ve only made it to number 6 on your 50 question exam study guide… sounds familiar right? You’re not alone, and many people struggle with studying. Either they are lucky enough to retain all the material the first time and don’t need to, or the idea of sitting quietly in front of a textbook for up to an hour seems like the most boring thing ever! School is not always fun, but simply setting aside time to study effectively can mean the difference between failing and getting phenomenal grades.  In the world of coding, that – in turn – means getting your dream programming or design job. Here are 6 tips to help you become better at studying and get the grades you want.

 

Set a Mini Goal

Sometimes the hardest part about studying is figuring out exactly what we need to study. Without a study plan, you run the risk of jumping from topic to topic, not really understanding any of it afterwards. If you’re fortunate enough to have been given a study guide, divide up the sections into smaller sections, allowing yourself 10-20 minutes for each. In the event that you’re crunched for time, it’s better that you fully understand some topics more than others – rather than having little to no knowledge of the overall subject.

 

Practice Mindfulness

Think of your mind as another person inside of you; like anyone, it needs to eat to stay alive. When you are studying a topic, you’re hand feeding your mind, and it eats every new thought you have. Every time you have a distracting thought, visualize yourself putting it in a refrigerator and feed it to your mind later.

 

Keep it Lit

Literally, turn those lights on! Straining your eyes, along with having a damaging effect on your sight over time, gives you a headache. Once you have a headache, that’s all that’s on your mind – the ache. Studying in a well-lit room, more specifically with “white light” as opposed to “warm light,” is better for your eyes and creates a more productive and focused environment.

 

Listen to the Right Music

It has been shown that music increases people’s focus when performing menial, repetitive tasks, but what about studying? Scientists have found that listening to classical music helps people study longer. Beethoven not your thing? EDM is also said to help students with studying, as well as certain forms of hip hop. Music between 60 and 70 beats per minute is ideal, but any music that is not overly lyrical will work, especially when you’re studying a topic like coding.  

 

Resist Your Phone’s Power

Put it away, simple as that. You’re going to use it, every single thought that passes through your mind can turn you into Gollum, driving you to unlock the precious and get sucked down the YouTube wormhole for hours.

 

Breaks

Sometimes you just need to step away, pushing your mind during crunch study sessions will only be effective for so long before you get burnt out. Try to keep your studying increments between 10-20 minutes and take a 5-10 minute break in-between. Stay hydrated, and if you have the time, take a nap, you earned it. 

 

Studying is essential to earn a good grade, and to understand the topic. However, you must study effectively by setting the scene, putting away your phone and taking regular breaks.