Thinking Tech

People choosing learning to code over learning a foreign language

People choosing learning to code over learning a foreign language

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For many, JavaScript is viewed as more useful than the ability to order a cup of java in a foreign country.

Flickr / Markus Hametner

For many, JavaScript is viewed as more useful than the ability to order a cup of java in a foreign country. In today's digital age, the demand for ways to learn to code is outpacing that for ways to learn a foreign language.

The New York Times reports that there is a growing market for night classes, online programs and even iPhone apps that teach basic programming skills. While such a market previously lent itself to foreign language lessons, many seem to feel that Internet coding skills will better serve them in the future.

The types of classes vary, offering instructive services in areas ranging from web design to HTML coding to WordPress, but what remains constant is the fact that the popularity of such services is growing. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that he would learn to code using Codecademy, a New start-up site that offers "interactive lessons in various computing and Web languages."

Rosetta Stone may not be a thing of the past yet, but this new market is starting to crowd out such services. Gizmodo writer Jamie Condliffe comments on the trend, saying that for people whose professions do not require it, he doesn't understand "how being able to compile code is going to prove useful." While the value of such skills may remain to be seen, the growing popularity reflects peoples' attempts to navigate a digital world.

[via NYT, Gizmodo]

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Jenny Wilson

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Jenny Wilson is a freelance journalist based in Chicago. She has written for Time.com and Swimming World Magazine and served stints at The American Prospect and The Atlantic Monthly magazines. She is currently pursuing a degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure