Swift progress

Published July 2, 2018

So, I mentioned Swift Playgrounds recently and thought I would share more of my experience with the app. I tweeted a summary that basically covered my history with trying to learn Swift.

Tweet from mrschristine: “Every year after WWDC, I get excited about Swift Playgrounds but have always got stuck halfway through the first course. This time, I’ve finally beaten it and moved on to Part 2. Look out app world, here I come! …(At this rate in about 10 years time).”

I have tried, several times, to engage with this app. It’s totally up my street, after all – learning new things, in a fun and engaging way that is more like a game than an education. Getting ticks after completing each chapter helps too, I do love a good checklist.

But, up until now, I have always got stuck at the same point, to do with looping, and I would give up. This year, for whatever reason, I managed to push on through past that sticky point and have not only finished the first playgrounds book but also the second.

It’s really a very fun way of learning a new language, intuitive and helpful. If you do get stuck there are videos and further reading materials to help you out. And of course the entirety of the coding world to help you, or a Mr C if you happen to have one of those to hand.

The lessons start off really simply where you’re just asking a character to move forward, turn right, pick up gems. Things progress slowly to start with, to give you confidence, and then ramp up quite quickly to the point you are routinely employing ifs, fors and arrays.

There are a few areas where it doesn’t quite explain the fundamentals behind what’s going on which have seen me come unstuck a little, but this year’s  perseverance has allowed me to push on through, rather than giving up for another twelve months.

Having completed the main two courses, I’m now exploring the “further learning” options and boy are they interesting. There’s a Learn to Code 3, many game based books (Rock Paper Scissors being just one of them), and to progress even further, the enticing world of Sphero, Lego and other physical objects. I mean, how can I not?

R2 D2

So, as I said in the tweet, watch this space. I have zero ideas for apps and I’m not a coder, but I’m doing it anyway and enjoying the ride.

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