Why Learning to Code Matters

Categorized under: computer science education for kids

In 2011, Marc Andressen wrote a popular article in the WSJ entitled 'Why Software Is Eating The World'. In the article, Marc argues that large sections of the global economy are set to be overtaken by software enabled solutions/companies.

More recently, Code.org has projected that by 2020, 1 million computer science jobs will go unfilled because we aren't graduating enough students from our universities.

If we believe Marc, the billionaire investor and former co-founder of Netscape, it is imperative that we begin preparing the next generation for a technology enables future.

Development

Beyond the purely economic reasons for learning to code, there are also clear tangible benefits to development that learning to code offers.

Youth sports has been great at developing kids teamwork, work ethic, and competitive spirit.

There is a famous New Yorker cartoon that quips, "The problem with computers is that they do exactly what you tell them to do". As any developer will tell you, truer words have never been written. However within that challenge, there is also great opportunity.

Coding helps kids become better problem solvers. When you build something using technology and it doesn't quite work as expected, that is a teachable moment. It enables you to go back through the lines of code and find where your initial assumptions were inaccurate and allows for real-time testing and updating.

Solving big problems

In his book, 'Outliers', Malcolm Gladwell writes

"The lesson here is very simple. But it is striking how often it is overlooked. We are so caught in the myths of the best and the brightest and the self-made that we think outliers spring naturally from the earth. We look at the young Bill Gates and marvel that our world allowed that thirteen-year-old to become a fabulously successful entrepreneur. But that's the wrong lesson. Our world only allowed one thirteen-year-old unlimited access to a time sharing terminal in 1968. If a million teenagers had been given the same opportunity, how many more Microsofts would we have today?"
We founded Digital Adventures to inspire the next generation to solve some of the worlds biggest problems using technology as their platform.

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About the Author: Omowale Casselle ([email protected]) is the Co-founder & CEO of Digital Adventures. Prior to Digital Adventures, Omowale led the development, launch & management of an interactive advertising & marketing platform, SAMPLEit (division of Outerwall, Inc.), in high traffic retail locations (Walmart, Meijer, HEB) that will help consumers trial, discover, and ultimately make more informed choices about their most important purchase decisions. Earlier in his career, Omowale was part of the new product development team that successfully brought industry-leading vehicles to market including Ford Mustang, Ford Fusion, and Ford Escape Hybrid. His passion for continuous learning and development has led to degrees from Harvard Business School (MBA), University of Michigan (MS Engineering), and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (BS Engineering).  

About the Author: Arjun Venkataswamy is the Head of Product at Digital Adventures.