I like how each course on Lynda.com is broken down into chapters and segments, so that each video is about 4-5 minutes. I can easily watch a few videos throughout the day (call it mental break from my work).
I’m looking forward to using the site to learn a few skills, including:
- Regular Expressions
I want to create a few tools and scripts to help with the documentation process. When I was working at NI, the technical writers would use LabVIEW to create our own tools to perform various tasks like check broken links, check spelling, validate files, automation, etc. I learned enough LabVIEW to program a few tools too, but now that I’m at Google, I no longer have access to LabVIEW. It has been on my to-do list to learn enough programming to create similar tools and scripts.
Right now, for lack of knowledge/skill in a relevant programming language, I use a simple text editor (TextMate) to create macros containing search/replace syntax (using regular expressions). It works but I’m hoping to create something a little more nifty.
Speaking of programming, there was a promo video this week from code.org about teaching programming in schools. In case you missed the video, here it is below.
I learned my first programming language (BASIC) when was eight. In college, I took a programming course (C). When I was the technology coordinator of an international school in Shanghai, I taught Squeak to fifth graders. When I was at NI, I learned to program using LABVIEW. These programming languages aren’t exactly applicable and relevant to what I’d like to do, but learning about them has helped me to think like a programmer. I’m constantly thinking of ways to improve and simplify the documentation process. Hopefully after taking a few courses on Lynda.com, I’ll be able to create an actual program and/or script!