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Time to share an Hour of Code

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With all the talk about the ongoing worldwide software developer shortage, it’s encouraging to see the grass roots efforts by the non-profit to bring coding to everyone. In fact, the group has designated this week — December 7-13 — for a worldwide “Hour of Code.” As of right now there are 191,019 coding events scheduled around the world this week, many, but not all, in classrooms.

The goal is to expose ages 6 to 106 (as the organizers put it) to the joys and benefits of coding. And with tutorials based on Star Wars, Minecraft, and Elsa from Frozen, there’s probably a little something interesting for just about anyone new to coding. Those with a bit of coding experience can turn to partner Khan Academy which is offering a number of tutorials to learn the basics of Java, CSS and SQL.

And if you’re wondering if this is really a worldwide event, check out this list…wow!

I’m sure this has the “preaching to the choir” ring about it but I think it’s important to remember that most people think coding is intimidating and just for people good at math or spatial skills. In fact all of us can, and should, learn the basics of coding because as we’ve reported extensively, the job market is changing for everyone. Coders are being asked to acquire more soft skills and people in marketing and finance and healthcare and manufacturing (just to name a few) are being asked to learn how to code. And let’s face it, coding is cool, right?

So I’m going to ask that we all share an hour of code (or two) this week with someone who doesn’t know anything about it. It’s good “PR” for the developer/tester professions and it’s fun too. Plus you never know when you might influence someone to change careers or add a skill or two. I’m starting with Star Wars…how about the rest of you?