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What's your developer origin story?

Chris Achard
I'm trying to teach everything I know at chrisachard.com Instructor at egghead.io Mostly, I use JS, React, Rails, and Node
・1 min read

Today I was listening to episode 1 of the Ladybug podcast (which is great - you should definitely check it out) where they described how they all got started in tech.

So I thought I'd ask the community: What's the story of how you learned to code?

Here's mine:

  • When I was 12, I found out that you could program in BASIC on our old ATARI 800. I made some funny beeps and drew some awesome lines on the screen 🀘

  • I loved computers, but didn't touch code again until high school, when I picked up HTML for the first time

  • I spend a stupid amount of time trying to make rounded corners on divs before border-radius existed

  • Finally, in college, I took my first CS class in JAVA

  • I got my first job doing Ruby on Rails; which was the first programming language I felt like I could think in

  • Now I'm a web and mobile developer - and I still think it's magical that I can make a computer do stuff just by typing ✨

SO: What's your developer origin story?

Discussion (8)

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rkboyz124 profile image
Vanadir Strejthsson

In my grade school years:
Me: *Right-click->"View Page Source"
Me: What is this magic?

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chrisachard profile image
Chris Achard Author

Yes! Definitely loved doing that and looking at random websites to get ideas :)

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mdhilwan profile image
mdhilwan

Started playing with HTML at the age of 14. Back then we were using Microsoft Frontpage (RIP 1997-2003).

I loved maths, lego and drawing as a kid. When I had to choose a diploma in 2003, I chose to pursue a Diploma in Digital Media Design and got my first experience with Photoshop, Flash Actionscript, Coldfusion etc..

2009 tried getting Ba... but got bored in school. Went for summer internship in the first year because I was so bored. Got offered a job at my internship instead. Quit school the next day.

2010 I transitioned over to Javascript after realising the whole industry was moving to the mobile devices.

Never looked back since then :)

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jimfrenette profile image
Jim Frenette • Edited

I was a facility engineer in charge of an office building in Washington DC back in the early 90's. We installed an energy management system and used a computer to interface with the hardware. About that time, I was getting very interested in knowing how to program and was going to computer shows which were very popular at the time. I put together my own 486 and got my hands on Visual Basic, that's how I got started.

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annejsize profile image
Jenna King

"Now I'm a web and mobile developer - and I still think it's magical that I can make a computer do stuff just by typing"

Haha, I've been a programmer for some time now and still think it's pretty cool I can make the computer do things through the code I write.

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andrewbrooks profile image
Andrew Brooks πŸ‘¨β€πŸ’»

Myspace layouts!

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scrabill profile image
Shannon Crabill

I was bitten by a radioactive Javascript function on a school field trip that one time.

Really. It was more like this.

  • I did a lot of arts and crafts on my own time as a kid
  • Graphic design seemed like a good idea for a major in college (I had no idea what I wanted to be)
  • I graduated, would introduce my major/what I did and the response was "Oh, so you do websites?"
  • I learned to code on my own time.
  • Got hired as an email designer
  • Learned email development on the job and on my own time

I still work as an email developer now, but I put in a lot of time to keep my front-end and programming skills up to date.

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chrisachard profile image
Chris Achard Author

"bitten by a radioactive Javascript function" 🀣