Code Academy01

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The Code Academy web site features interactive lessons on various computer technologies, including JavaScript and HTML. It provides an excellent way for you to brush up on basic skills that we don't have time to cover in class.

To get started, create an account on Code Academy.

NOTE: The name of the site is actually codecademy, not code academy. In a no doubt futile attempt to preserve what is left of the English language, I nevertheless tend to call it code academy.

After you have set up your account, I want you to complete some simple exercises in Code Academy. This should help you recall a few basic facts about HTML and JavaScript, in case you need to brush up on your skills.

Some of the courses are in transition or have changed recently. Complete one HTML course and one JavaScript course.

If you have already completed an older version of the course, I will accept that. In other words, this assignment will be very easy for you if you have already completed the course.

Several students have pointed out that Code Academy has create a new course called Introduction to JavaScript. I have changed my links to point to that course.

Looking Ahead

We'll keep progressing through Code Academy on a weekly basis, doing about fifteen percent of both skills each week. Therefore our proposed weekly progress For the JavaScript skill looks like this, where each week we do a new part:

Part 1:  12%
Part 2:  25%
Part 3:  38%
Part 4:  50%
Part 5:  63%
Part 6:  75%
Part 7:  88%
Part 8:  100%

If you have already completed these skills, then just turn in the assignment pointing me toward the page showing that you have completed the skill, and you will get credit. If you have completed the course, you can turn in all the assignments right now. Otherwise, turn them in as you complete them. Please note that completing the skill is binary, you must get to 100%. You will not get credit on the last week for getting to only 99%.

NOTE: The HTML skill is easier and not as long, so I want you to complete 25% of that skill each week. Some students will have already completed the HTML course, so they can just provide a link to the profile showing that they have completed the skill. The profile will not show your progress through the JavaScript or HTML skills, so you will have to provide screenshots until you reach the 100% point.

Turn it in

When you are done, submit either a screen shot or a link to your Code Academy profile page. Whether you submit a screen shot or a link depends on whether or not you have entirely completed a Code Academy skill. To help you understand what I want, consider the two following concepts:

In this assignment we are working on fifteen percent of the Code Academy JavaScript skill. If you have completed only 25% of a skill, then submit a screen shot. In this assignment, I ask for only 25% of a skill to be completed, so most of you will submit a screen shot. If, however, you have completed the entire skill, then submit a link to your profile page. I describe the profile page and the screen shot below.

Profile Pages and Screen Shots

On Code Academy, I am known as netslayer43536. As a result, a link to my profile page looks like this:

If you complete one hundred percent of some skill, then you should submit a link to your profile page. Don't submit a link to any other page on Code Academy. You must submit a link to your profile page or I will kick the assignment back to you.

In July, 2014 CodeAcademy changed their profile pages so that I will not be able to see your progress through a particular skill by looking at your profile page. Their change made it so that I can see only your completed skills on the profile page. If you have not yet completed a particular skill by finishing 100% of the questions, can you please submit a screen shot of the skills you have completed. It will probably look something like this:

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All Done

If you have already completed the assignments, perhaps in another of my courses, you need only provide a link to your existing profile page. If you want to work through a skill again, create a new account and start over. I don't think you can delete work you have done and reset a course you have already completed. You can use the left panel to pick a section you have not done yet, but I don't see a way to completely start over.


I strongly suggest that you set aside a little time at least five days a week to work on this assignment. Trying to do it all the day it is due is likely to be a very frustrating experience. If I want you to do fifteen percent of a skill each week, then try doing about one fifth of that a day, or about three percent of the total skill. Something like fifteen to thirty minutes a day. That is a much more comfortable pace than a big, hours long marathon.

Also, there may be times when the Code Academy editor can go a bit wacky. Try refreshing the page or clearing the cache. Even better, try cutting and pasting the code into Cloud 9, Geany or some other editor, and working at the command line with node. Just do a little work in a completely different environment. If it seems to be working there, then try pasting your solution back into Code Academy.

Code Academy Pro

Recently Code Academy has forced those who sign for a new account to take a one week free trial for Pro. I wish they would not do this, and I do not expect anyone to pay for a Pro Account.

The Pro versions of the courses are longer than the free versions. Thus, for the first week of class, getting to 25% will be harder than it will be after the Pro Trial ends. I'm not sure how to get around this.

Many companies that offer free services such as those offered by Code Academy use advertising to foot the bills. Clearly, that is not their approach. I think they are being a bit too aggressive in trying to find ways to make money, but I am not without sympathy for their cause.

I don't want to saddle anyone with bills they were not expecting when they signed up for this course. Thus I'm not asking anyone to sign up for Pro beyond the trial period. Also, going Pro makes the courses longer, which makes the assignment more difficult to complete than I had intended. That said, if you can afford it in terms of both time and money, it is perhaps not a bad thing to go for their Pro offering, but I have not done so myself.