How to learn new code on the go
Have you just started with a new programming language?
Do you take your mobile phone with you on the bus to make good use of your time?
If your answers to above questions are ‘Yes’, I have top recommendations for you. Have a look at the list below which covers my favorite 7 apps for beginners.
Let me be clear upfront, they are no replacement for actually getting your hands on a computer and writing your own code. However, these mobile apps are good resources to discover the very basics of a programming language. They might be a perfect complement to the programming course you just enrolled in.
Screenshots of the app Lrn.
Note: Sololearn provides similar free apps also for Java, C++, php, SQL, HTML, CSS, Python, and Swift.
Programming Language(s): Swift
SwiftBites is an amazing resource for everybody wanting to learn Swift. The explanations are simple. Code samples demonstrate the lessons’ content nicely. The structure of the bite-sized lessons is well-thought-out and makes the app a great resource to review Swift basics whenever needed. In the lessons, question-answer challenges are to be solved. Code results are printed. Correct or incorrect answers are commented to learn more about the topic of the lessons. Your learning progress is always visible through a circular percentage bar. If you like, you receive periodic study reminders. Great freebie: You get a Swift Cheat Sheet covering the basics of Swift. Upon completion of all lessons, you receive a personalized certificate. Price: The first chapter ‘The Basics‘ is free. Unlock all chapters for € 2.99
Screenshots of the app SwiftBites.
Programming Language(s): Swift
Swifty is another fantastic app for starting with Swift if you are new to the language. Over 200 small tutorials are organized in chapters covering all basic Swift concepts. They comprise clear explanations and good code samples. In the lessons, you are asked to enter your code in the integrated editor. Correct or incorrect answers are commented. The tutorials are followed by a challenge section which you complete by answering questions on the just learned. Price: The first two chapters ‘Swift Basics‘ and ‘Variables‘ are free. Unlock all chapters for € 2.99
Screenshots of the app Swifty.
#5 Ruby on Rails Commands
Programming Language(s): Ruby on Rails
Great app for everybody who starts coding in Ruby on Rails. Perfect for people who learn well with flashcards. The app allows you to learn effectively whenever you have time, even if it is only a few minutes. It covers Rails commands on 64 flashcards: 32 cards with Rails commands by command name, 32 cards with commands by function. A question about a Rails command is displayed on each flashcard. You tap the card to see the answer. By choosing a number between 1 and 5 you evaluate how well you did know the answer. The cards will be repeated in a pattern based on your confidence. If you want, the app sends you study reminders. Price: free
Screenshots of the app Ruby on Rails Commands.
Programming Language(s): No code language. The interface provides you with predefined 'blocks‘.
Not only kids but also a lot of grown-ups are enjoying Hopscotch. It is perfect for everybody who wants to create games or drawing apps. It teaches you common programming principles without asking for a single line of written code. You discover basic programming topics like variables, conditionals, loops, etc., even if you don’t know any code language / syntax. The interface provides you with predefined ‘blocks‘. You use the blocks to specify drawings, movements, looks, sounds, etc.. Easy-to-follow video tutorials teach you how to make games (on the iPad, not yet on the iPhone). You can publish your app so that anyone can play and like it. Studying the ‘code’ from others’ projects, helps you find new ideas and solutions. Besides building your own projects, there are over 40 challenges that you can go through to develop your ‘programming skills’. Price: free (in-app purchases available)
Screenshots of the app Hoppscotch.
The App Udacity is of special interest for everybody who prefers video lectures. In addition to courses for programming languages, it covers an interesting range of other computer-related courses, like ‘Intro to Computer science’, ‘How to Use Git and GitHub’ or ‘Software Development Process’. The courses are taught by experts in their field. They range from basics for beginners to more advanced topics. Throughout the courses, the video lectures are followed by some short quizzes. To solve the quizzes, you check the answers that apply or type the code in. Offline usage of the app is yet only possible for iOS (Udacity states on their web page that it is coming soon for Android). Price: free
Screenshots of the app Udacity.
Hope you’ve found some inspiration when reading through my recommendations!
Which other learning apps do you know to get started with a programming language? I am looking forward to hearing about your favorites.
This post or recode now are in no way affiliated with or endorsed by the companies mentioned.