Moses Finlay

@mosesfinlay

Why I Like Coding as a 12 Year Old

Me surfing at our local surf spot.

Hello everyone, I’m Moses and this is my first blog post. I wrote this post to give you my perspective on programming and to share a little bit about myself.

How Chess Helped Me

When my dad was growing up, he played chess all throughout grade school and even took second in the state of Oregon when he was in 6th grade. He taught me how to play chess when I was about 6. I really enjoy chess because it is a form of problem-solving. Whenever I played chess against my dad he always beat me, so one time he told me when I finally beat him he would give me fifty dollars! So I started practicing against Chess Titans by Microsoft and started to slowly get better each time I played. Eventually, I beat level four, and after that, it took me eighty-five games to beat level five! I kept playing, challenging my dad to a game every day. My Dad said he was starting to let his guard down so he changed it so I could only play for the prize on Mondays.

Me playing chess against my dad.

On Monday, February 25, 2013, I finally beat my dad in a game and put fifty dollars into my wallet in the process! Chess gave me practice problem solving, not making obvious mistakes, and that there will be a reward for hard work. The game also gave me confidence that I could learn anything with enough hard work. It was also a lot of fun.

How I Started Coding

For most of my life, I have always enjoyed making things and seeing them work. So when I was about 8, my dad told me about something called coding. What is coding, I thought to myself. He said it’s where you talk to the computer with code and tell it what to do. This got me very interested, the computer would listen to an 8-year-old! I first started learning JavaScript on Khan Academy. After that, I wanted to learn more about coding so I eventually started learning to code on Treehouse. Treehouse has been where I learned most of what I know now, including HTML, CSS, BootStrap, jQuery, and JavaScript.

Is Coding Hard?

Yes, coding is hard. But if you keep trying, the results can be very rewarding and you’ll get better. When I am coding, it can be very easy to run into problems or just not understand something. My advice would be to go onto to a forum like stack overflow and ask your question. Most of the time someone has already had the same problem, so you can also search for your problem and see if anybody else has had the same problem. My last piece of advice is not to give up. Thomas Edison invented the light bulb after over 1,000 attempts. Amazing achievements always come from hard work.

Should you Learn to Code?

Well, I don’t think coding as a career is for everyone. But I think that everyone should understand how coding works because eventually, code is going to be integrated into everything. For example, the only reason you are reading this post is because of code. The only reason we can play video games, use Netflix, or even go to the moon is because of code. Code is everywhere!

Me bodyboarding with my dad.

My other interests

You might be thinking, this kid probably sits at home all day programming. Well I don’t, I live in Hawaii so we live very close to the water and I go surfing almost every day with my family and our friends. Besides surfing I really like hiking out to lava, yard work, playing with my siblings, and my cats. I also really enjoy playing Super Bomberman and Zelda on our Nintendo Switch.

Check out my website, MosesFinlay.com to see my projects and games I’ve made, and sign up to my newsletter to stay in touch.

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