By: Raeesa Rashid
I cannot tell you the number of times I have seen kids interested in learning to code because they want to learn to hack. Now there is nothing wrong wanting to learn to hack as long as you hack for ethical purposes i.e. you want to go into a cyber-security career that requires you to know how to hack but many of these kids I see who want to learn to hack don’t have that goal. They don’t have any goal they just want to learn to hack because… And there’s no reason after that because.
It is somewhat frustrating to see people only interested in code because of hacking because whilst ethical hacking is pretty cool, there are so many more amazing things you could do with code.
With coding, you could easily be at the forefront of a mega change in a certain industry. For example, in the law industry blockchain and smart contracts could change the law industry for the better, by learning how to code in a programming language like Solidity (a programming language for smart contracts) you could have a hand in changing that industry. Imagine how amazing that could be, making two incredibly important industries like law and computer science meet. You could be changing the world. I am fully aware that the previous sentence sounded dramatic and cheesy, but it’s true, you could be changing the world. Who knows where one small computer program could lead?
If you don’t want to do that with coding, you could always create games. You have probably heard the old ‘you can make games’ mantra before, but creating games is an excellent way to learn how to code. You don’t have to start with something complicated like ‘Call of Duty’ or whatever if anything starts with something simple like a snake game or space invaders. It might look like a piece of cake given how simple the game is, but trust me, if you’re a beginner it won’t be a piece of cake. You’ll get bored, you will run into errors you may be stuck on for a long time, and sometimes when you solve those errors it will be something so little it will make you feel stupid, you’ll get frustrated, you may even hate code for a short time but one thing you will not do is give up. Once you’ve jumped all those hurdles and finished coding your game so it is free of errors and fully working you will feel accomplished that you created something and it will be a fantastic feeling.
You could also code educational apps, for children of any age. One of the first things I coded when I learned to code was a program that tested kids on their timetables. In the App Store I have seen, English apps, Maths apps, Science apps, there are so many educational apps out there so if all those people can create them, why can’t you if you learn how? Your app may become very successful, and help children around the world learn. However, it is important to know, that so many people make apps these days, especially educational apps, so don’t expect millions of people to download your app straight away because there are so much choice and variety out there for a user. But even if your app doesn’t become a smash hit best-selling success, what if just a few people download it and it helps them? It’s better to help a few people and have an impact on their lives than help nobody. Or you may not even get your apps to the App Store which is also okay because then you have experience in coding educational software which means if you wanted to work as a software developer at an educational software company, you could easily show them all the educational software you have created and it could make you stand out from all the other candidates.
These are just a few things you can do with code, but hopefully, you can now see that coding isn’t just limited to ‘hacking’ and that there is so much more you can do with it as well as ethical hacking. And what you can do with code, is not just limited to what I listed in this article there is so much more you can do with it too, you just have to read around a little more if you are interested and truly discover what you really want to do with code and your reason for wanting to do so.