At first, the question, “why do you want to know how to code?” seems almost redundant.
Obviously, we all should learn to code, right? We all know that. We’ve all been told that coding is the most important thing in the world for as long as coding has been popular. In fact, it’s difficult to imagine a time when coding wasn’t popular.
But that still leaves us with the question of why? Why is code so important? Can anything possibly be that dire? I think there’s a myth we all perpetuate that coding is the best way to make a lot of money in a short amount of time, but if we break it down, there are so many Comp Sci scholars at this point- can they all really be in demand if there are so many of them?
On a societal level, it’s likely that we all hype coding up a bit too much. It may be a means of competing with other countries, instead of focusing on something we can naturally excel at? Who knows.
I had to learn a bit of it for my Intro to Digital Studies class, and once I had gotten the swing of it, I realized that coding is just like anything else: a means of communication. It’s a language that humans can learn in order to communicate with machines. As someone who studies literature, this realization helped greatly in making coding a bit less formidable.
On a personal level, however, I’ve always had a relationship with computers and coding. My mom had me pulling apart old computers since I was a child, as she was putting herself through school for Internet Technology purposes. My very loose knowledge of coding (I can create an ugly web page, for example) has been extremely validating for me in terms of justifying myself to others. When I hear the dreaded, “What are you going to do with English? Teach?” question, I hold back my rant about how educators have to study education, not English, and instead nervously launch into a description of all of the things I can kind of do with code.
Most people who don’t understand what it means to study English versus Education also don’t know what I’m talking about when it comes to rudimentary coding, so it is an effective method of shutting them up.
If someone who is actually skilled at coding tries to talk to me about it, however, I’ll probably end up looking like a doofus. So, I’ll end this post by saying that one can never know enough about any given subject, and therefore ought to always pursue knowledge, even if only for knowledge’s own sake.