About this project
Update: $10,000 raised, first stretch goal achieved!
Two days left in the campaign (aah!) I'm going to try to promote the campaign like mad for the last couple days - let's see if we can hit $13,000 and our next stretch goal!
Update: We've hit our minimum goal!
Huge thanks to everyone who has donated, especially these organizations:
Read more about our stretch goals below, which start at $10,000!
Update: stretch goals ahoy!
Thank you to EVERYONE who has pledged so far — with 18 days left, we're $2,000 from the minimum goal! I'm also super duper pleased to see over 200 backers. Thank you thank you thank you!
I wanted to update this with some stretch goals I'd love to achieve, just in case we make that $7,000 minimum early (here's hoping!)
$10,000 raised: Day-long workshop series around the US. I've already chatted with someone at PyCon about a Denver workshop, and plan on at least including SF, NYC, and at least a couple other major metropolitan areas.
$13,000 raised: Extend the workshops to Canada (I'm married to a Canadian, love you Canada!) — Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal definitely, maybe more.
$17,000 raised: Extend workshops to outside North America! Europe/Australia/New Zealand/etc.
★★★ $20,000 raised: eBook will be released as pay-what-you-want.
Thanks again to everyone who has shared, donated, and helped out so far! ♥ Tracy
Hello Web App — Learn to code your first web app using Python and Django.
Hi, I'm Tracy!
Three years later, this web app has evolved into my startup, WeddingLovely (a part of 500 Startups and the Designer Fund) - I've designed and built the entire company and grew to LOVE web app development!
Learning to code was so frustrating, especially as a right-brained designer with no back-end programming experience. Tutorials assumed I was comfortable with the command line, knew what a model-view-template architecture was, and already had a grasp on programming tools and resources.
Why is this book different?
I want to write an introduction to web app programming book for Django and Python which assumes absolutely no programming knowledge — down-to-earth explanations of programming terms and basic walkthroughs of using important programming utilities like git (for version control), GitHub (for backups and collaboration), virtualenv (for virtual environments), and others. The book will also emphasize templates first — getting to the visual web-app view immediately to see results rather than stumbling around in the command line.
The book assumes you'll have a very basic understanding of Python and programming concepts (like loops and if-statements) and some HTML/CSS knowledge. But don't worry, I'll include links and resources if you need a quick refresher!
By the way, the e-book will be released completely DRM-free so you don't need to worry about how many devices you use.
Why this matters
I'm sure everyone has had problems learning to program in their career so this book will be helpful to almost anyone, but especially right-brained and visual learners, which web designers and women tend to be. I fit into both those groups, and existing programming tutorials felt like they were speaking another language entirely — I would get frustrated so easily and was tempted to give up.
Too many existing resources are written by seasoned experts who have trouble relating to the perspective of a novice, but this book is different. My goal is to use my notes from learning these last few years to create a very approachable narrative towards diving into web application development. This will be an ideal launching pad for anyone who is intimidated by densely technical prose.
It's extremely important to get more women into programming, and I feel my down-to-earth, alternative approach to learning programming will help women and right-brained learners have success earlier and faster and be a kickstarter to learning more.
Find out more!
If you'd like to get involved early, star the HelloWebApp project on Github or dive in by asking questions in the Issues or even sending a pull request!
Video by the superb Alexis Keenan (available for freelance filming and editing anywhere in the California Bay Area!)
Music by Josh Woodward
Risks and challenges
I have only been programming for three years and don't have a degree in Computer Science. This does mean I'm very aware of the issues that non-programmers and visual learners run into while learning programming, but there may be some areas of web app development that I am still sketchy with. To counteract this, the book will be reviewed by several (at least five and hopefully more) expert Python and web app developers for correctness while I focus on crafting an approachable narrative and tone.
The book can also be delayed when going into print production, depending on what printer I use. However, I have a lot of experience with print due to my Graphic Design degree and a lot of knowledge of online publishing resources to make sure the book is produced quickly, efficiently, and professionally.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
I'm aiming for at least 150 pages, which'll hopefully be both manageable and comprehensive. A chunk of the content won't be in the book itself — installation instructions, additional resources, and other docs will be on the Hello Web App GitHub (https://github.com/limedaring/HelloWebApp), since they will change quickly and often, and I want the content of the book to stay up to date as long as possible.
I mentioned no programming experience, but in another section, mentioned needing to know the basics of logic. Sorry for the confusion! No programming experience needed — Hello Web App doesn't cover those subjects in the book, but has a full chapter dedicated to external resources to learn very basic Python and logic principles. There are already a ton of great places covering these topics, including Learn Python the Hard Way, which I used myself when I was learning (http://learnpythonthehardway.org/). The chapter will also include a review, just to make sure the basic principles, like variables, comments, and loops, are understood before jumping into the Django tutorial.
Support this project
- (30 days)