Build a Generative Music Box

We just launched our second project, A Generative Music Box. If you've ever played with the Bloom app on your iOS device, then you'll have an idea of what you're going to build: a graphic interface you can click on to generate sounds and graphics that combine to make...

Using the Firefox Console

In a previous post I showed the features of the Safari and Chrome consoles. Here, I do the same for the Firefox console, which has many similar features, as well as a couple of features unique to Firefox. This is a great way to get comfortable in all the major browser...

Editing your HTML and CSS in the browser

Chrome and Safari both allow you to edit and experiment with your HTML and CSS right in the browser. The tools and features available in both these browsers have expanded considerably in the past couple of years, giving developers many more options for experimenting...

Using the Console

In a previous video about using the browser developer tools, I focus on how to use the JavaScript console to experiment with and test your JavaScript code. In the following videos, I provide a quick overview of the main features in the Safari and Chrome developer...

Experimenting with CSS

Over the years CSS has grown... a lot. Just like with HTML and JavaScript APIs (like geolocation and web storage), the specification for CSS---that is, what constitutes correct CSS rules and properties---is managed by the W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium. Until...

JavaScript’s new way to make objects

In JavaScript, we use functions in three different ways: as methods of objects; as constructors of objects; and, as "regular" functions (that is, functions we typically write either as top-level functions, or functions we pass as anonymous functions to other...

A Manager’s Guide to Design Patterns

We’ve just finished a cool project with O’Reilly: a short manager’s guide to design patterns. Here’s the idea: create a guide that gives you the gist of design patterns, enough to remind you of what they are all…

What makes JavaScript different?

JavaScript is a bit different from other programming languages. How? In part three of Head First JavaScript Programming Teasers, Elisabeth steps you through what makes JavaScript unique, and why it’s a great first programming language.

The Art of Design Patterns

Anyone who has ever been late on a software development project (who hasn’t?) can relate to this. Software development starts to feel more like an art or craft when the best you can do is roughly estimate the size and scope of a job and then cross your fingers and hope for the best — certainly, it is at times like these when our field doesn’t feel like much of a science.

JavaScript arrow functions

JavaScript isn’t the first language to use first class functions, but it’s likely the language that made them popular. Java, Objective C, C#, C++, Python… these are all languages that did not have first class functions until recently.

Coming soon to JavaScript: block scope with let

Like var, you’ll use let to create variables (not constants). You might be wondering why we need two ways to create variables. Well, let differs from var in one very important way: let is scoped differently from var. Let’s take a closer look at what that means.

Coming soon to JavaScript: constants

In programming you can assign values to variables. In some languages, you can also assign values to constants. What’s the difference? The values of variables can vary (which is why they’re called variables), but the values of constants can’t. In other words, you can change the value of a variable all you want, but once you’ve assigned an initial value to a constant, you can’t change it again. Its
value stays constant.

Dos and Don’ts in JavaScript

With every programming language, there’s a list of do’s and don’ts and JavaScript is no exception. Some of these best practices are there for your protection (like always always always using semi-colons!), some to make your code more readable and less error-prone, and some to increase the efficiency of your code.

Keeping track of ‘this’ in JavaScript

In JavaScript, the special variable this is used to refer an object. But which object this refers too depends on the code you’re executing and how this is used. So, a common problem for those learning JavaScript is keeping track of the value of this in different situations.

JavaScript Scope, not what you might think

Whether you’re coming to JavaScript from another language, or you’re learning JavaScript as your first language, the way scope works — that is, when and where your variables are defined — might surprise you.

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