“Non-Technical” Founders: Why I’m Learning to Code

By February 1, 2012

Outside of my writing and editorial responsibilities at TechLi, I serve as the CEO of an interactive learning platform, Kuhcoon. Aside from being an entrepreneur, I am also a student at the University of Scranton. Whenever someone asks me what my job is I always have an urge to say “I learn for a living.” Although I learn something new on a daily basis, there are many things that I find almost impossible to wrap my head around. Ironically coding is one of those things.

When it comes to anything mathematical in nature, I often find myself counting on my fingers and feeling left utterly confused. My experience coding thus far has been ill at best. In eighth grade I dabbled in the basics of html and web design by revamping my high school’s website for fun. I even aspired to major in Computer Science at one point, that is, until I visited a local college and talked with some actual Computer Scientists. I told myself there was no way I would ever be able to learn how to code.

Until now.

Not my best Photoshop work.

Like many others, I am participating in Codecademy’s ‘Code Year‘ by making my New Year’s Resolution to learn to code in 2012. One part of that learning comes from a weekly lesson from Codecademy, but outside of E-learning I have also made the decision to enroll in a basic Computer Science 101 class.

One of the reasons I am taking the initiative to learn is to form an understanding of the basics behind Object Oriented Programming. Kuhcoon is being built using several of the latest and greatest programming language libraries. My end goal is to educate myself enough to make use of the prominent programing languages we develop with, but at this point I need a firm foundation of the basics. My hope is that I will be empowered to fully understand the processes that are happening on the backend and frontend of my product without needing to rely on my CTO to answer technology specific questions.

I think it’s important for entrepreneurs to practice self improvement as a part of character development. Whether it’s learning to code, learning a new language, or learning to help others: learning keeps the mind humble. When we learn we are made aware of our weaknesses and in turn rewarded with the fortitude that comes from hard work. Learning is by very nature similar to entrepreneurship.

In order to learn one must make mistakes. I have yet to come across an experienced entrepreneur who has never made a mistake on their road to success. Learning not only molds the mind of the entrepreneur, but it also has a direct impact on the success of the business. As an entrepreneur you must learn not only from your personal mistakes, but also the mistakes of others.

I’m learning to code for many reasons, but above all else: I love to learn.

“Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.” -John Cotton Dana