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My Code Trip of 2020.

This year has been amazing (for me at least). I know for most people it’s been a disaster because of the pandemic and all, but I’m really grateful for everything I’ve been given and achieved this year. I feel like I've grown a lot as a person this year. I went from being that kid who was so afraid to participate in a code jam to becoming someone who loves to participate in hackathons. Whether it's about making new friends and strengthening my bond with old ones or going from a noob CSS coder to winning so many hackathons, I’ve learned so much this year. This was the best year of my whole life and while I'm still not a pro coder, day by day I’m learning something new and interesting which truly makes life worth living. Let’s start with my introduction.

Who am I?

Hi, I’m Lily Khan, a 16-year-old front-end developer from India. I’m in the 11th grade and homeschooled. I live a simple life unlike the typical life of a teenage girl. I don’t get out of my house much or meet people in real life frequently, so everything happening with the pandemic hasn't changed my life much. What's changed my life the most this year is Replit.

Some of you might be asking what is Replit? and how has it changed my life? Well if you don’t know then let me explain:

What’s Replit?

Replit is an online IDE, where you can code on your browser without struggling to set up anything on your end. The name comes from the acronym REPL which stands for "read–evaluate–print loop." Replit was originally created by two amazing Jordanian programmers: Amjad Masad and designer Haya Odeh. Replit currently has an amazing team of 20+ developers from all over the world.

How did it change my life?

I would suggest reading my old blog about how I became a part of the Replit community here if you haven’t already. That aside, let's continue where I left off in an old blog from “Current Status.” While I wrote that blog for the weekly challenge (read more about the weekly challenge below), I was working on the Lang Jam with my teammates Kakashi, LordPoseidon and TheDrone7. We made a Programming language called “Volant” (the word volant means fly in Latin). The language was made by Kakashi, and I made the Volant site, logo and some other stuff. TheDrone7 made the syntax highlight and implemented the code editor in the site, LordPoseidon helped with some other stuff too and we won the technical difficulty category.

langjam results

What were weeklies -

Weeklies were weekly challenges Replit hosted for their community members weekly from May to October. There were many types of challenges for many types of coders, whether you were a back-end developer or a front-end developer, they had you covered. Weeklies were so much fun! In July and August, they hosted weeklies for Web Developers. So, of course, I had to participate. Here is my result - I didn’t win but it was fun and I learned so much, and I think that it was worth trying.

weekly result

Being in the Replit community, learning many things and being around such amazing people gave me a lot of self-confidence. I tried more challenges like hacktoberfest art contests and more hackathons. 🎉

Online Classes and Tech Meetups

In August, Replit hosted a one-month long online class for beginners which was conducted by the creator of Quizlet, Andrew Sutherland. He taught me so many amazing web development skills in those classes, like how to make a chatting app and how to secure sites and apps. To be honest, I would love to have those classes again, they were really fun. I attended so many online tech meet-ups which Danny Thompson and James Q Quick hosted and they were really fun too.

Hacktoberfest 2020 -

Oh my, this year's hacktoberfest was kinda messed up at the start but thanks to all the amazing and hardworking people of the hacktoberfest team they had it all covered. It was my 1st time participating in hacktoberfest, last year I wasn’t sure if I could handle it, but this time I was confident enough to give it a try. I’m not a pro so all I did was few minor CSS fixes like changing the CSS or layout of sites and fixes if someone had the wrong comment syntax in their CSS code. I know these weren’t the biggest changes but I tried. I made my 1st pull request and raised my 1st issue so it was a good experience and now I’m using Github more than I was before! :)

Replit Halloween art contest -

During Halloween in October, Replit hosted a Twitter Halloween art contest where we have to make any type of Halloween art on Replit and spoiler alert 🚨 I won that too. :D

Halloween art

Github Octocat contest-

Major League Hacking (MLH) hosts amazing hackathons and they do a Github octocat contest too. I tried two times, first in HacksAndCraftHacks then in DoReMiHacks, which I won! I got really cute GitHub swag as my prize!


Major League Hacking -

In MLH hacks, I participated in 3 hackathons:
Hacksandcrafts, Sharkhacks and WhoDoneItHacks. The workshops were amazing and the mentors were cool. Aaron and William Lifferth were my favourite. I met so many amazing and cool people there like Doom and Tinku and I made new friends like Kartik. We won the 3rd WhoDoneItHacks with the first overall position. Winning the MLH hack was on my list of things that I wanted to do before the year ended and I was so happy and grateful for all the hard work my team did! We made a 2 min mystery game with voice input, it was pretty fun to work with such an amazing team and btw I did the front-end of that site more info / Run on Replit.


Working with other devs -

I used to think that working with amazing devs would make me feel like a noob (which I am) but it turned out to be the opposite and I really love to work with cool and new people who I learn so much from. They never said that I’m not good enough, and they all encourage me to try out new stuff and to give my best shot. They trust in me even when I don’t trust in myself, the dev community is the best, I have never seen such amazing and supportive people before in my life and I’m so thankful to every single one of them who helped me become a better person every day! A few amazing people who made this year amazing and to whom I’m so thankful for - Amjad Masad, TheDrone7, Tom, Edwin Kofler, Apoorv Singal, LordPoseidon, kartik, AllAwesome, Haz, Kognise, Piero, Cow, Zavexeon, Luc Angevare, Eekboi, Manan, Yash Gupta, Jinisha Tejura, Nhcarrigan, Mina, Ayush, Matt, Drigger, Slip, Alan, Zwack, Wetyuip, CC, Minx, Coder100, Max, Sugarfi and so many more!


Codejams, hackathons and competitions I won this year -

  • (Mar) Replit CodeJam #9 - CoronaJam - 2nd place.
  • (April-May) Replit Template Jam - 1st place.
  • (July) Replit LangJam - Category win (technical difficulty).
  • (Oct) Replit Halloween art contest.
  • (Nov) Github octocat contest.
  • (Dec) MLH Who-Done-It-Hacks - 1st overall.

I wouldn't have done all this if Amjad Masad hadn't said I'd be more than good enough to participate in a code jam and if TheDrone7 hadn't asked me to participate with him. Though I didn’t know much, I never thought that others believing in me could ever give me this much confidence, words are really powerful and I believe you should use them to inspire others!

Current and future plans

Currently, I'm working with Kartik on Lyka.css, a simple CSS framework. In 2021 I’ll learn basic Javascript and react, I'll be continuing my Python too for school also I’ll try to make a portfolio, then hopefully I'll apply for an internship! Not sure how things will go in future but I'll try my best.

Signing off

My journey this year has been amazing. I did so much this year, I’m kinda proud of myself lol, I tried to write it all in this blog. I hope you enjoyed reading it, hopefully got inspired and gained the confidence to know that you are good enough to achieve your goals. Keep trying new things because you won’t know how it will go until you try it! Life is a beautiful journey, no one has any control over death, so live life to its fullest every day so that you won’t regret that you never did what you wanted to do in your life. All you have is the present, so experience things make mistakes and learn from them. Trying new things can be hard but I promise you won’t regret it! And don’t forget to take care of your health! I hope this year brings lots of joy in your life. Be sure to make new goals and work to achieve them, but don’t forget that the journey is important too! Only you can make yourself happy, do things you love and enjoy your life. Happy new year! 💖

Top comments (2)

getdevved profile image


yashguptaz profile image

Ayyyyyyy thanks for the mention!!!
Will try my best continue to make your life amazing!