How the book works In How to be a Coder, you will learn how to think and act like a coder. The book is full of fun activities that can be done at home, as well as simple programs, and information on some of the most famous coders of all time
Awesome activities Look in the beginning of the book to find exciting offline activities that let you discover the ideas that are important to coding. These examples don’t require a computer, but they will help you prepare to write programs.
Safety first All of the projects in this book should be done with care. If you see this symbol at the top of a page, it means that you will need an adult to help you with the activity.
Getting ready You can do many of the projects in this book right away. Most of the craft projects can be done with items you have at home and the coding projects just need a computer and an internet connection.
Thinking like a coder Coders have all kinds of talents. One thing that most coders share, however, is a love of problem- solving. If you want to think like a coder, keep these things in mind:
Coders think ahead. Programs can be complicated, so it is helpful to know what you want at the start. Coders break things down. By taking one piece of a plan at a time, you can try different things without changing the rest of your program.
Coders are imaginative. Start by imagining what your code will do before you make it. This will help you think of different types of program to create. Coders are careful.
One little mistake can keep your whole program from working, so always check your code twice.
Coders solve mysteries. When something is not right, see if you can find any clues about what went wrong. Coders are persistent. Decide to try again. Try over and over.
If you quit too soon, it will be hard to learn anything new. Coders don’t give up. If something doesn’t work out, don’t worry. Everyone makes mistakes! You can still end up with something you’re proud of in the end.
Origami algorithm An algorithm is a list of steps that tells you what to do. A recipe is an algorithm and sheet music is an algorithm, too.
Algorithms are the first step in planning a computer program. Did you know that you can follow an algorithm to make an origami boat?
Ada Lovelace Mathematician • Born 1815 • From the United Kingdom
Ada Lovelace was the daughter of the famous poet Lord Byron. Though her mother discouraged her from studying poetry, Lovelace found an outlet for her imagination in mathematics and technology. She believed both could change the future.
Charles Babbage Lovelace met inventor Charles Babbage when she was 17, and they became good friends. He had designed the “analytical engine”—a mechanical machine that could be programmed to solve tricky calculations.
The machine was not built in his lifetime, but Lovelace was still fascinated with its potential uses.
Paper pixels Pixels are the tiny squares of colored light that make up your screen. If you zoom in on an image on a computer, you’ll see that it’s actually made up of many single-colored blocks.
Try following these steps to make a pixel image with paper!
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