Aaron O’Leary

@Aaronoleary

I hate coding but I love making

Like many other technical people I learned to code from a young age, I specifically remember learning the likes of HTML, CSS and PHP in order to build out my long imagined dream of running my own successful Club Penguin(rip) blog. I relied solely on the teachings of W3school at the time and while I had a great respect for code and a huge amount of pride every time I printed “Hello World!” on to my screen, it was deeply frustrating.

See, I didn’t want to code. I hated the concept of coding. Coding to me was a means to an end, never a passion. I recognised that I wanted something and realised that the only way I could get it was to build it myself and that required code. I hated making anything because I knew I would have to code.

The day I became a Maker.

Fast forward to 2018 and I’m building a simple crowdsourced based web app and I stumble across a WYSIWYG editor called WebFlow, reeling from past experiences, I was super skeptical but I gave it a shot. Within 2 hours I had a website with a dynamic CMS fully up and running. Then, I came across Airtable and realised I can hook up my apps submission form to the database and low and behold without writing a line of code I built an app that automatically updated records and displayed user inputs on the front end.

I was building a thing

I quickly started to realise that this was much bigger than I had thought. I didn’t stumble on to one not-so-known app. I had stumbled on to an entire movement.

Around that time I also came across another website, Product Hunt (who I ended up working for) and discovered that people were making full apps in a day without code. Products such as:

Copy paste reusable elements into your Bubble projects 🚧

Kiths reusable elements help you get started quickly on Bubble. You can easily drag and drop the elements you need into your projects. And customise them however you like.

A crowd-sourced list of growth hacks

GrowthList is a crowd-sourced list of actionable, proven Growth hacks sourced by the community

Free program to learn to build mini-startups without code

The concept here is to teach anyone and everyone how to build in minutes and validate with real paying customers via a custom, tailored plan.

All products that if I were to build would have required me booting up a code editor and working for hours to build a prototype. All products that, being honest I probably would not have finished. Needless to say, my mind was well and truly blown.

That day was important to me as it changed my outlook on making completely.No longer did it feel like an elite club reserved for serious code wranglers but it seemed now that anyone can be a maker, as long as you have an idea, you can make it.

I realised anyone can be a Maker

The no-code movement is breaking down barriers many would-be Makers have previously faced; the barrier of code.

Fuelled by the accessibility of new tools and a growing community of Makers supporting each other, building apps has never been more accessible. Anyone can be a Maker. In less than a day you can build:

  • A crowdsourced, data centric app powered by Airtable
  • A toolkit to run better meetings with Coda
  • A dynamic, CMS driven blog with Webflow
  • An entire Alexa skill using Voiceflow
  • Any assortment of site / app using Sheet2Site
  • A mobile app using Glide

These products provide the means for a maker to make. They remove the barrier of code and let Makers focus on what truly matters: the idea.

A celebration of Making

As I mentioned before I now work for Product Hunt and the Maker community is the bread and butter behind everything we do. My day to day life has changed dramatically just because of products built by Makers launching on Product Hunt and we want to celebrate the genius that is Making.

Last year, we launched our first ever Makers Festival where over 2,000 makers from all walks of life, built, tinkered and hacked their way to building a product to showcase to the world.

This year we have partnered with Coda for the Makers Festival no-code edition. We want to showcase the true potential of the no-code community and the apps powering it. If you’re passionate about building and you want to discover more about no-code then sign up here. Registrations are open until Sunday the 24th of March. We have a prize for every category and if you build with Coda there is a special Grand Prize.

We have a a few themes coupled with collections below to inspire you in your maker journey:

We are in a unique period of time where an idea is the only requirement needed to start making. I truly believe everyone can be a Maker and the community is proving that every day.

No code is still in its infancy, but it is a growing movement with some serious potential to shake things up. I’m excited to be part of that.

Me now when I go to make something
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