How I got into programming

I know I know, I did make a post similar to this recently, but that was more about my endeavours in WatchKit specifically, and only briefly touched on where I was before that.

It started in ‘06

Yep, 12 years ago. For as long as I can remember I’ve been interested in technology, whether it’s learning how to find the games on the old absurdly heavy plasma TV, or pushing the buttons on an old blackberry.

The Blackberry

My mum tells me that when I was 4 I used to go with her when she’d get coffee with her friends. One of my mums friends owned a Blackberry phone covered in buttons, think something like this

That many buttons fascinated 4 year old me, and my mums friend was generous (and risk taking) enough to let me play with it while they discussed whatever adults discussed in ‘06.

Tonka Trucks and Madagascar

I was in kindergarten at the time and while I have few memories of that time, a couple of them include me playing Tonka Construction 2 on the kindy laptops and Madagascar the game

My favourite level, jumping through the rings
My favourite level, jumping through the rings

Back to the roots

My interest in technology continued throughout primary school but didn’t manifest itself as a programming interest until around 2011, when I took to making basic quiz games in DOS (batch files, really going back to the roots). I tried making simple games in programs like Gamemaker or Unity, but I always found them too difficult and subsequently boring, and that belief continues to this day.


My first time learning a real programming language wasn’t until 2015, when I began to learn Python on CodeCademy as part of a new curriculum at my High School. The effect this class had on me is quite ironic, it made me hate programming. Not just Python, but programming. It felt unnecessarily complicated, and the teachers weren’t much help. I can’t blame them though, they were learning at the same time as us.

It resulted in some students going the extra mile to actually read the documentation (which no one else was made aware of) meaning they were leaps and bounds ahead of everyone else. Combine that with 14/15 year old snobbiness, and no one really wanted to help one another.

After barely passing that class with a C+ and a poor understanding of Python, I was ready to be done with it.

Python, but this time it was good

That was until the next semester, in which my Multimedia class made me take Python once again, but this time it was entirely self taught, no teacher aid, no CodeCademy, etc. it was just me, myself, and YouTube. We were tasked with making a game in Python, despite not actually be taught how to even begin doing that, the deadline was set and we were off to the races.

Thanks to a YouTube channel called Sentdex, I was able to make Pong and get the only A in the class. I actually learnt Swift by building Pong in that too.

For some reason or another I can’t quite explain, this class made me love Python. I was finally able to see it’s usefulness as a scripting language and began to use it wherever I could. From simple scripts to change my desktop background daily to the top post from r/EarthPorn, to the much more complicated GradeCheck program I detailed more in a previous blog post.

The next year, 2016, was the year I began iOS development, but you can read much more about that here.

Thanks for reading, and let me know what else you’d like to see!