How I got started coding

I was reading a Reddit thread about how it's supposedly so difficult to learn coding with #adhd. (I can't find it now.)

I find coding the ideal activity – constant stimulation, nonlinear problem-solving, and it suits an incremental work style like when you distract yourself from a sub-problem in favour of another. But I recognize that it's demotivating when you start out and don't know anything.

It's fun once you have most of the fundamental computer concepts in hand, but how do you get there?

My story was incremental and accidental. I never decided "OK I'm going to learn programming" and sat down with a textbook. That wouldn't have worked.

My story was more a transition from simply being a "power user" to deploying more and more advanced solutions to fix problems or get things done on my computer.

Things like installing mods for video games. Writing direct HTML for a profile page on one of the pre-Facebook social media. Mass-renaming a folder of songs to satisfy my perfectionism.

A big shift came with installing Debian GNU+Linux on a MacBook. The process of setting it up had a lot of unexpected roadblocks. Even more so for ricing it (customizing it the way I liked it). Luckily I didn't know that ahead of time. It was just one problem or one minor irritation at a time.

Somehow, I picked up shell scripting, regular expressions, Git, #emacs… The rest is history.

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  • 2024-03-09
Created (13 months ago)