Getting started with… Python

Hell yeah! I’ve decided I know my way around WordPress sufficiently for what I plan to use it.

I’ve been looking at free online courses, and though my heart yearns for Culture, Art, History, Social Sciences and Humanities, I already have a diploma I can flush down the drain. So, Computer Sciences for me, thanks.

I’ve always been interested in computers, but never really engaged in anything more than Microsoft Office, until recently I had to learn Adobe’s InDesign and Photoshop. Now, I’m not really good at it – I know enough to do the job I’m required. I do play around in Photoshop and it’s really fun. But I wanted something more serious.

And BAM! Let’s make me miserable and start doing something I know NOTHING about(I’ll later explain why miserable) .

I browsed around edX and looked under Computer Sciences, Archived, Introductory level. I was thinking I’m so smart.

I enrolled HarveyMuddX: CS005x CS For All: Introduction to Computer Science and Python Programming.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m only at the beginning. I’ve finished Week 1 (which really doesn’t matter ’cause the course is archived). When I say finished, I’m lying a bit. I read and listened to everything (sometimes more  than once, sometimes more than twice). I tried all the exercises. But, mostly because it’s an archived course, I have very limited feedback. And I don’t understand many many things.

In Week 1, you had to make a Rock-Paper-Scissors game. It was fun, but frustrating – I kept making a mistake in one code line and it drove me crazy.  I mean, I just couldn’t make it work. I had it all fine, all good, but this one code line kept f-ing it up.

Next, the Four Fours. At first it was great. I mean, it was thrilling. And then, I had it all except *5*, *6* and *7*. I started randomly using arithmetic operations. My husband came in and he tried. It was frustrating. Eventually I looked up the solution. Yeah, I know, I know. But it was killing me not to know the answers. Once I looked them up, it was sooooo simple. I guess my brain just overheated.

Which leads me to – Picobot! Now, there’s something else. Oh, right here. I understand the concept. I know what Picobot can and can not do. I just can’t make him go around the entire ‘room’.  So that’s what I’m doing today. I’m staring at Picobot and yelling at him. I know it’s not his fault, but still.

To sum up, This is fun, but really hard. I’m just not used to thinking this way. I really hope that will change. I intend to finish the course, but I’m concerned I started off heavy.  If I don’t get the things in the first week completely and obviously am unable to finish the tasks, how can I expect to go further? That’s me being miserable.

Maybe it would be easier if the course was active or that it was classical education. But since I decided these challenges I WILL learn (stubborn, I am) will be free, self-taught and doable from home, I’ll just read all  forums, discussions and articles I find on the world wide web.

Oh, I just remembered, in elementary school we learnt some Visual Basic. I remember I was good at it, but I kept forgetting to close the loop.  And before that we made a turtle do stuff on Commodore 64. I guess I’m familiar with programming then, even if it has been about 15 years.


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