Last week, I explained how I decided to focus on web development (HTML-CSS-JS). I ended my post saying that even though I knew where I wanted to go, I had no clues where to start.
If you type “How to learn web technologies” on Google, you easily find hundreds of websites telling you that they have the best solution to make you a pro in a few months only if you follow their plans and courses. And when you don’t know where to start, going through them one by one to make up your mind can be quite tiring. You can also check many discussion boards on websites like Quora and Reddit, only to find yourself more confused and dazzled by the myriad of options available.
As a busy young dad, I didn’t want to waste any second and wanted to make sure that my way of approaching the subject would be as efficient as possible. But I also didn’t want to waste too many hours researching this most efficient way…
His advices essentially boil down to:
- Go through the two books Head First HTML and CSS and Head First HTML5 Programming.
- Do the challenges, exercices and projects on Free Code Camp, in order to apply what you learn in the books.
Which is exactly what I did.
The same day I read the articles, I ordered the first book on HTML & CSS and started working my way through it as soon as it arrived. It’s more than 700 pages long, but it’s actually a very fun and visual book with many detailed and colored illustrations. I made my way through it in just a few weeks, without skipping a single exercise, and finished with a good grasp of the fundamentals of HTML & CSS. Even though these topics are pretty basic, I shared Derek Sivers’ feelings expressed in the following quote:
It’s a really amazing feeling. The mystery is lifted. You’ll look at all websites in a new way. You’ll understand what’s going on behind the scenes. You’ll know how to do it yourself. It’s really empowering. (It’s definitely been the most rewarding thing I’ve ever learned.)
If you want to learn web development and don’t know where to start, I really recommend that you check these two books (and if you’re around Lyon, don’t hesitate to borrow them from me ^^). It’s actually accessible to anyone, no need to have any experience with the web or with development, nor to have any kind of science degree.
As for me, I was now ready to apply this new set of skills on little projects, and Free Code Camp seemed like the perfect place for that.
Next week, I’m going to explain how this website works and how I used it to bring my newfound skills to the next level.
Another baby step. But a step nonetheless :).