Coding for Visual Learners (Preview)

Why Learn JavaScript?

There are many programming languages out there. This course will teach you how to code using the immensely popular programming language, JavaScript.

JavaScript is one of the most widely used programming languages, as it is built into every web browser. Due to this, almost all the web pages and applications out there use JavaScript to some degree. In recent years JavaScript started to be used not only to program user interaction in web pages but also server-side - backend - applications, Internet of Things (IoT) devices, or mobile apps for platforms such as Android or iPhone. Even though it has its roots in web development, JavaScript knowledge is now applicable to many other domains.

Given the popularity and ubiquity of JavaScript, it is really easy to find resources and information about it if you ever get stuck. It has a big, vibrant community behind it. On the popular Q&A website StackOverflow, there are more than a million questions that are related to JavaScript. If you end up coding in this language and get stuck on a problem, the chances are someone else also had the same problem, posed a question on this website, and got an answer which you can learn from.

I won’t go into details about what makes a programming language dynamic or static, but being a dynamic programming language, JavaScript code is more concise and easier to write compared to static languages. Here are some examples where a simple statement that displays the words hello World on the terminal is written using different languages. Notice how much shorter it is to write the same code using JavaScript.

Displaying Hello World in the terminal in C++ (Source: http://helloworldcollection.de/)

// Hello World in C++ (pre-ISO)
#include <iostream.h>
	
main()
{
	cout << "Hello World!" << endl;
	return 0;
}

Displaying Hello World in the terminal in Java (Source: http://helloworldcollection.de/). By the way, Java language is not related to JavaScript.

// Hello World in Java
class HelloWorld {
	static public void main( String args[] ) {
		System.out.println( "Hello World!" );
	}
}

Displaying Hello World in the terminal in Javascript.

console.log('Hello World');

Look at the amount of seemingly unnecessary symbols in other languages! I know which language I would choose to write with.

One other advantage of learning JavaScript is that, since it is the language of the web, you would be able to share your creations with other people in a really easy manner. I think being able to do so and receive feedback is an important consideration when learning a new skill set. To summarize, there are lots of reasons to learn to program, and JavaScript stands to be a great choice since it is:

  • Easy to write and powerful
  • Popular and ubiquitous
  • It has a vast application domain