Now what?

04/08/2008

It’s totally easy

Being both a follower of the tech scene and a non-coder can often be a painful combination. When reading the news about Google App Engine it’s easy to get really excited about all the potential for future apps and then very quickly get depressed when you see developers do things that seem quite challenging to you and yet they get described as being totally easy. Bret’s a good guy and I know it’s not meant to be an insulting comment, but it’s frustrating to be interested in this stuff and then slam into a brick wall when looking for a place to start.

A little background: my coding experience consists almost completely of making videogames in BASIC for my TI-82 calculator in high school and building a website with Notepad and MS Paint in ‘97. HTML was “totally easy” relative to BASIC back then, but since then I haven’t really dug into CSS, Javascript, Python, Ruby, PHP, XML, etc…hence the intimidation with the multiple barriers to entry.

The question that I keep facing is - what is the best use of my time, or how can I add the most value? Learn programming by starting at square one and get frustrated while trying to do totally easy things, or should I focus on idea generation so I’m not stuck building yet another CMS or chat system?

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