In this lesson, we’ll talk about coding and learn an overview of the 4 most common web programming languages:
Obviously, there’s plenty others, but in this lesson, we’ll briefly overview these 4 coding languages and what free resources I recommend to continue learning them.
HTML stands for Hyper-Text Markup Language. Every website you could possibly visit is built on HTML, and guess what? You can read it! HTML is visible for anyone to view. Let’s pull up the HTML of Wikipedia. (Demonstrate) We go to wikipedia.org, click View > Developer > View Source. This is the HTML code that powers this website. With HTML, you can add images, paragraphs, headings, tables, and more. But HTML by itself is bland. How do you add color? Change the style, font, size, etc? That brings us to CSS.
PHP stands for Pre-Hypertext Protocol. We can’t see a public website’s PHP code, but it lets you interact with servers and databases. When you submit a form, what happens? When you login to a website? When you access a database? All of that can be done in PHP. There are other languages similar to PHP, like Python and Perl, but I learned PHP early on because it’s world-famous and even WordPress is powered by PHP. There is a ton of potential with PHP, but for your sake, PHP will mostly be used to make minor edits to your WordPress website.
MySQL is a database. With it, you can store and retrieve data for your website. What kind of data might be stored? User profiles, blog posts, eCommerce orders, calendar events, WordPress software, comments, and more. Databases can be huge, store massive amounts of data, that can be retrieved in a fraction of a second. Basic MySQL code lets you retrieve, add, edit and remove data from a database. That’s a brief overview of the most common programming languages you’ll come across. So how do you learn these coding languages? We sure can’t learn that in a 15-minute video. Code can take weeks or even months to fully comprehend. Fortunately, there is a tremendous amount of free resources out there to learn code. I would start with a Google search for “learn HTML free.”
DEMONSTRATE the search results: One of the first resources that will pop up is W3Schools.com. In fact, there are so many quality websites like this that I wouldn’t recommend spending a dime on learning any of the languages mentioned in today’s lesson. Save your money. Spend a little time each night learning code from one of these free resources.
A basic understanding of these languages will add to your repertoire of knowledge.
Remember: the more knowledge you have, the more valuable you become, and the more valuable you are, the more you can charge. Plus, you’ll be in better shape to solve problems that arise. Why can we say that? What kind of problems might arise? Well, perhaps you pull up one of your client’s websites, and it’s a blank white screen? Or, there’s a warning? An error message? What do you do? An error that looks like a foreign language to someone else will make sense to you if you understand the coding language. The error message usually explains itself if you know how to read it correctly. So understanding the code will help you efficiently diagnose and solve the problem. So what have we learned?
That’s it for this lesson. I’m Leighton… and now you know, coding!