Author Archives: Isa Thompson

Week 3


I never thought web-development was going to be so complex. There are so many details, and different rules that you have to remember. It is a bit insane. So far I am enjoying learning the material, especially the stepping-stones: start with HTML (titles, body, and paragraphs), add some style to the verbiage which you create to make it lively through CSS (create ID’s, change fonts, change font-styles) and finally add some interaction to your HTML and CSS creations through JavaScript.


Codecademy is a great learning mechanism, it provides step-by-step instructions. The only functionality that is a somewhat disappointing is the hint feature. The feature seems to be hit or miss. Some of the exercise have very clear hints others are clear, but not at useful. I have truly learned to appreciate bloggers who have posted their Codecademy questions, especially the JavaScript paper, rock, scissor blogs. That exercise was pretty difficult in my book.


1. How long did it take you to learn how to code and what language did you start with?

2. What source can I look at to create a form? I want the webpage that I create for class to have a registration sheet which includes a name (first and last), address, phone number (required field), Date of birth, and a free text field which for medical history. Will we be learning about these features in class? Can these functions be written using HTML, JavaScript?

3. Is it possible to gather information from a registration page without a database? If yes, how? If no, which database option is the most effective?

4. What webpage do you recommend for leveraging tab features, specifically: home, about, contact us, testimonies

I am really excited about creating my own web-page, but at the same time am feeling overwhelmed, there is so much to learn.

Week 1 – May 21, 2013

Week two homework helped me reinforce the topics covered in class last week, which was great. I thought I would remember everything taught in class, but I was wrong. I went home started working on developing my code and my mind was blank. Thank goodness for Week 2 readings and for the web design course.

As far as the Basic Intro to HTML for Journalism students, I am nowhere near a journalism student, but can appreciate the work, especially with the changing world that we live in. One day you are involved in being a writer and the next day you are expected to become a developer-writer. I have always been intimated by developing, especially after working in IT. I cannot fathom how a journalism student feels. Their entire college curriculum is focused training the brain to identify a story and delivery and then all of a sudden the world changes and they are expected to code. It is a good thing that we have generous technologist out there as the developers and owners of WordPress and Web Design courses which break things down into simple form.

The following stood out from the journalism essentials: “Even if you never write a line of code, you need to be able to communicate with those who do.” Very powerful statement, not only for developing, but for everything in life. As a Public Relations student and a consultant, I find it to be extremely important to communicate in other people’s language. It leaves a huge impact. One huge challenge which is a growing trend in IT organizations today is the inability for IT and the Business to communicate and their inability to appreciate the others gifts. IT always feels that the business is not doing anything and the business seems to underestimate the complexity and challenges which constant change of development requirements brings to the table. My initial thought is that they are not able to appreciate what each brings to the table due to lack of knowledge and/or interest in the others talents. I hope this course helps me better understand what developers do, not only so that I too can join the development and blog craze, but to also work better with development teams.

Other comments: My first impression of this web design class is that it may actually be possible for me to learn how to code and/or blog. I am truly excited, not only about the idea of being able to start my own blog, but also at the idea that I may be able to teach others how to blog. I truly cannot wait to go live.

Course Preparation – May 19, 2013

The pre-session reading materials provided a great overview into the internet, platforms, and methods which can be used to create blogs, such as WordPress. I know feel that I have a better understanding of Unix and WordPress and the creators intentions for creating the systems, I hope this deeper understanding helps me learn the WordPress program.

Timeline – It was interesting to see what people are expecting from technology. Personally, I feel that we have not seen anything yet. I have always felt that eventually our world will reach a Jetson era; I cannot wait to own a flying motorcycle and or a robotic made which does everything run errands, cleans, hair, nails, accounting, etc.

Rethinking Our Thinking presented different ways to look at programming. Who would have ever thought that selecting which line to stand in at the grocery store could be related to performance modeling, or that a decision to buy skies versus rent is a form of online Algorithm. If we could make everyday life connections to learn technology, engineering and math, it would be so much easier.  A second item that stood out in the article was the section about commenting on your code. After going over it in class, I must say it is an amazing feature. It is like adding comments to a word documents and or PowerPoint love it!

WordPress Philosophy – The WordPress philosophy appeals to me as a user, one I do not have the desire to learn complex programming, but I do have the desire to communicate nutrition related information to the world. WordPress seems to have opened the doors for non-technical users to market products and/or information online in a cost-effective manner. I look forward to learning more about it.

UNIX Philosophy – The Basis of UNIX Philosophy article was a surprise to me. Working as a consultant for IT has provided opportunities to work with extremely talented Windows and UNIX specialists. Conversations about the complications which are encountered by UNIX developers suggest that they are not applying the philosophies outlined in the article. I believe the major challenge which has led them down the path of complexity is the lack of communication within teams and between business and IT. They seem to find it easier to write complex code that is challenging to understand and costly to maintain than reach out to others to understand what was done or how to effectively write the code. The only thing that comes to mind is job security and/or they see complex rules and codes as a challenge which leads to improved skills, but to in actuality it leads to systems which hard arduous to troubleshoot  and costly to  maintain.

Week 2 Assignment; May 28, 2013

Codecademy is an interesting way to learn how to code. It breaks code down into simple form, which allows beginners like me to not get overwhelmed. Most programming books, at least the ones which I have purchased, are extremely overwhelming. The size and type of font used strains the eyes, and there is usually too much information provided in any one given page. I love the way Codecademy has one topic or instruction per page and makes practicing easy — the sandbox or practice area is right on the instructional page. Five stars for interactive learning.

One thing about Codecademy that brings concerns to my mind is that it seems too easy to be true. And because it is easy and fun, I now wonder if I am actually retaining the information which I am practicing and not just going through the motions. I guess for now, I will go through the lectures and practice and as the course goes on I will see if it actually works. I really do hope it works as I am hoping this course will help me obtain the skills that I need to stand up my own blog and eventually interactive website.