Why Coding is the New Black

What job skill do you think will be most valuable by the year 2020? As it turns out, the world runs on code and as you can expect, coding will be a valuable skill set to have by then. In fact, so many companies and individuals are so optimistic about this that there are now a slew of startups on the Web dedicated to teaching you how to code.

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If you are little way past grammar school, don’t lose hope because the Web can take care of this for your. You can either decide to take specialized education programs or teach yourself how to code using the hundreds of websites and resources available online, most of them at no cost.

Where Do You Start?

Learning HTML and CSS can be a good foundation to learning code. These also happen to be the building blocks of web design. You can start by learning the basic syntax and simple browser animations to get you up to speed.  One of my favorite websites is Codecademy which takes the classroom approach by giving you small quizzes along the way. The website comes with a progress monitor as well as a white board that allows you to make errors, correct and re-learn, effectively teaching you what works and what doesn’t.

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If you are the sort who likes to watch as opposed to reading, there is still hope for you. Treehouse, a startup that offers instructional videos on coding and programming languages is a great place to get your feet wet. The website teaches you how to build websites, create iPhone and Android apps, code with PHP and even start a business: all using video. You get over 1,000 videos in the different areas of web technology, take quizzes and interactive code challenges, as well as earn badges as you monitor your progress along the way.

According to the co-founder of GonnaBe, a location-based app, “Understanding data at any scale requires a computer to run numbers, not a calculator. In today’s big data world, that means coding.” The CTO of Osurv Mobile Research, a smartphone survey company, echoes similar sentiments regarding big data by saying, “A new coder better understand what that means and how to handle it. Every company has access to a gold mine of consumer insight in the form of analytics, social networks, activity logs, etc. The challenge in managing that information is developing a process to extract high-value bits and act on the quickly.”

Learning the basics of coding is a skill set that can last a decade despite the complex and dynamic world of programming. Coding is the new literacy and will separate those who are tech literate and the tech illiterate. It can make you a better leader and business person and make you marketable in a more tech-oriented world.

If you can learn to code, do it. You won’t regret it.