Google’s Launches the “Made with Code” Campaign

I wish I didn’t know how to code. That way I could watch Google’s Made with Code videos and get inspired all over again. These videos are so much fun to watch!

Google recently invested $50million in the project, and has hired comedian Mindy Kaling as a spokeswoman. The site is focused on bringing code to women, but it’s inspirational for any girl (or boy) who ever thought that coding was only for nerds.

Google has even made live coding experts available so you can asks questions during Made with Code: FREE Office hours

Seriously, just watch some of the fashion/art/life-changing projects people are making with code. Here are our favorite 3 innovators! Watch for yourself:

1. Ayah Bdeir creates interactive art with her company Little Bits

2. Danielle Feinberg breathes life into Pixar characters

3. Erica Kochi brings help to third world countries through Unicef

Watch all the videos here.

What do you think of Google’s campaign? Comment below!


One Year Student Spotlight: Jimmy Chen

Hey One Month Rails students!

How are things going? Wonder where you’ll be in one year? If you’re having trouble focusing, I have a great story for you from one of your fellow students…

After spending over a decade as a successful investment manager, Jimmy Chen, decided to pursue an alternate career path as a developer.  For him, One Month Rails was decidedly different from other online courses due to its project-based lessons.  One year later? He’s now a full stack software engineer at a healthcare startup, RubiconMD.


I sat down with Jimmy this week to learn more about his journey from the finance world to the tech world:

Read On


4 Things You Should Do To Prepare for A Hackathon

Quite often I get the question from students, “Hey Chris, am I ready to attend a hackathon?”

Jon Hamm says "yes" to Hackathons

Oh hells yes

“YES, do it!”, I’ll say. And I can see the fear boil up in their eyes, because to my students what I just said translates into:

lion (265) Animated Gif on Giphy

Let me assure you this is NOT how a hackathon feels

You’d like to try a hackathon? Great!

I’ve put together a list of 4 things you can do to prep. Read On


10 Reasons Beginners Should Learn Ruby on Rails

Woman at Computer

I often get asked the question: “What programming language should I learn?”

If you’re totally new to programming I highly recommend Ruby on Rails. In this post I’m going to give 10 reasons why I think new programmers should start with Ruby on Rails.

1. Ruby on Rails is a web application framework.

It is NOT the same thing as Ruby. Ruby on Rails is basically a collection of shortcuts written in Ruby that lets you build web applications – basically websites – really quickly. The benefit to learning a web application framework (like Ruby on Rails) before learning a programming language itself (like Ruby) is that you’ll make quicker progress in the beginning, you’ll have a real site that you can share with friends, and you’ll see how the things you’re learning actually apply to the things you want to be able to do.

2. Some of the biggest websites in the world are built with Ruby on Rails.

Basecamp, Airbnb, Bleacher Report,, Scribd, Groupon, Gumroad, Hulu, Kickstarter, Pitchfork, Sendgrid, Soundcloud, Square, Yammer, Crunchbase, Slideshare, Funny or Die, Zendesk, Github, Shopify. Enough said.

3. Lots of startups are hiring for Ruby on Rails.

It’s not the most in-demand thing to learn for jobs in general – there are way more job openings out there for things like Java, PHP, even Python – but in terms of working at a startup, great Ruby on Rails developers are some of hardest people to find. This is mostly because…

Read On


Why Codecademy Didn’t Work for Me

codecademy-didnt-work-for-meAs someone who learned how to code pretty recently, I’m frustrated by the way that coding is taught to beginners.

I wanted to learn coding because: a) I wanted to build a Web app and it’s near impossible to find good developers in this market, and b) I thought coding would be a valuable skill to have (just read the back cover of Douglas Rushkoff’s “Program or be Programmed” if you want to see what I mean). Read On


Famous First Landing Pages (Updated)

If your startup is successful, no one will remember how ugly your product looked the day you launched. (And if it’s not successful, no one will care.)

When we think about successful companies like Google, Facebook, and Twitter, we tend to forget the modest beginnings from which they came. As Paul Graham recently wrote, “Think of some successful startups. How many of their launches do you remember?”

Well in celebration of modest beginnings, here’s a dose of reality: I recently came across the landing pages of some of the most successful companies we know. This is something everyone should to see.

The moral of the story: don’t name your company BackRub. Also, don’t worry about making something pretty, worry about making something people love. As Reid Hoffman once said, “If you are not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you’ve launched too late” (click here to tweet this quote).

(Credit goes to Phil Pickering for finding these)


Twitter’s first landing page:


Read On


Hacker News Nation #19 – Y Combinator’s hottest new startups! What are Facebook’s Plans for Virtual Reality in 2015?

All the news from your tech week, in less than twenty minutes. It’s Hacker News Nation!

  • Secret emails from Steve Jobs to Google have been published. Are they illegal?
  • These are the hottest startups from Y Combinator Winter 2014 that you need to know about
  • What’s Facebook’s plan for Virtual Reality in 2015?

Be the first to know: follow @hnnation on Twitter

Subscribe to Hacker News Nation

Youtube iTunes Read On