Code.org

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The Code.org logo

Code.org is a non-profit organization and eponymous website led by brothers Hadi and Ali Partovi[1] that aims to encourage people, particularly school students in the United States, to learn computer science.[2] The website includes free coding lessons, and the initiative also targets schools in an attempt to encourage them to include more computer science classes in the curriculum.[3] On December 9, 2013, they launched the Hour of Code 2013 challenge nationwide to promote computer science during computer science week until December 15, 2013.[4] Major tech companies and their founders, including Bill Gates and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, have put up about $10 million for Code.org.[5] [6]

Goals[edit]

According to its website, Code.org has the following goals:[3]

  • Bringing Computer Science classes to every K-12 school in the United States, especially in urban and rural neighborhoods.
  • Demonstrating the successful use of online curriculum in public school classrooms
  • Changing policies in all 50 states to categorize C.S. as part of the math/science "core" curriculum
  • Harnessing the collective power of the tech community to celebrate and grow C.S. education worldwide
  • Increasing the representation of women and students of color in the field of Computer Science.

History[edit]

Launch and first video release[edit]

Code.org was launched in January 2013 by Hadi and Ali Partovi, with the goal of making "programming" accessible to everyone. Their initial focus was on creating a database of all computer science classrooms in the United States.[7] The launch was covered in a number of technology publications online, including TechCrunch,and Geekosystem.[7][8] In late February 2013, a month after launch, they released a video featuring Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, Jack Dorsey and other programmers and entrepreneurs on the importance of learning to code. This video was covered in a number of news sources.[9][10][11][12] Two weeks after the launch, TechCrunch reported that the video had been a "blockbuster hit".[13]

Hour of Code challenge[edit]

During Computer Science Education Week [14] from December 9 to December 15, 2013, Code.org launched the "Hour of Code Challenge" on its website to teach computer science to school students, enticing them to complete short programming tutorials.[15][16] [17] [18] The challenge involved getting people to write short snippets of code to achieve pre-specified goals using Blockly, a visual programming language of a similar flavor as Logo. The initiative had been announced about two months in advance.[19] At the time of launch, the initiative was supported by United States President Barack Obama as well as leaders of many technology companies such as Microsoft and Apple Inc..[20][21] About two weeks later, it was announced that over 20 million people had participated and over 600 million lines of code had been written as part of the challenge.[22][23][24]

Flappy Bird[edit]

In 2014, Code.org posted a one hour tutorial to build and customize a Flappy Bird video game using the site's block visual programming language.[25][26]

An Hour of Code for Every Student crowdfunding campaign[edit]

In December 2014, Code.org held a successful Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign that raised over $5 million to help educate school children.[27]

Reception[edit]

Writing for San Jose Mercury News, Mike Cassidy praised Code.org and the Hour of Code, writing: "A publicity stunt is what we need."[28]

John Dvorak was critical of the Hour of Code in an article for PC Magazine. Dvorak wrote: "I see it as a ploy to sell more computers in schools."[29]

Earlier, Dave Winer had responded to Code.org's first video launch by writing: "I don't like the way people at code.org are pitching it. And I don't like who is doing the pitching, and who isn't. Out of the 83 people they quote, I doubt if many of them have written code recently, and most of them have never done it, and have no idea what they're talking about."[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Guynn, Jessica (2013-02-26). "Silicon Valley launches campaign to get kids to code". Los Angeles Times. 
  2. ^ [1] latimes.com Want to prepare kids for the future? Teach them to code.
  3. ^ a b "About Us". Code.org. Retrieved December 30, 2013. 
  4. ^ "69,710,062". CSEd Week. 
  5. ^ [2] nytimes.com Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, and Lately, Coding
  6. ^ https://es.go.indiegogo.com/blog/2014/10/code-orgs-hadi-partovi-changing-education-making-history.html An Hour of Code’s Hadi Partovi on Changing Education and Making History
  7. ^ a b Olanoff, Drew (January 22, 2013). "Code.org Launches To Help Make Computer Programming Accessible To Everyone". TechCrunch. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  8. ^ Tickle, Glen (January 22, 2013). "Code.org Says "Hello, World" to Get Everybody Coding". Geekosystem. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  9. ^ Taylor, Colleen (February 26, 2013). "Watch Zuck, Bill Gates, Jack Dorsey, & Others In Short Film To Inspire Kids To Learn How To Code". TechCrunch. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  10. ^ Nieva, Richard (February 26, 2013). "Code.org has launched a meaningful attempt at education reform. Let’s hope the star-power helps". PandoDaily. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Is Code.org Too Soulless To Make an Impact?". SlashDot. February 28, 2013. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Winer, Dave (February 27, 2013). "Why you should learn to code". Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  13. ^ Taylor, Colleen (March 13, 2013). "How Code.org’s ‘Learn To Code’ Video Starring Zuck And Gates Surpassed 12M Views In 2 Weeks". TechCrunch. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  14. ^ "69,710,062". CSEd Week. 
  15. ^ "15 Million Students Participate in Hour of Code - Liz Gannes - News - AllThingsD". AllThingsD. 
  16. ^ "Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates Teach Code.org Online Coding Class - Liz Gannes - News - AllThingsD". AllThingsD. 
  17. ^ [3] Boston Globe
  18. ^ Editor. "Hour of Code Reaches Over 16 Million - What Next?". i-programmer.info. 
  19. ^ Yeung, Ken (October 14, 2013). "Code.org unveils ‘Hour of Code’ campaign encouraging K-12 students to pick up computer programming". The Next Web. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  20. ^ Empson, Rip (December 8, 2013). "Obama, Celebrities, Politicians And Tech Co’s Come Together To Launch Coding Education Push". TechCrunch. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  21. ^ Beres, Damon (9 December 2014). "Obama Writes His First Line Of Code". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 12 January 2015. 
  22. ^ Empson, Rip (December 26, 2013). "Code.org: 2 Weeks And 600M+ Lines Of Code Later, 20M Students Have Learned An "Hour Of Code"". TechCrunch. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  23. ^ Jennifer Fenn Lefferts (December 29, 2013). "Preview of writing code for future". Boston Globe. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  24. ^ Morrison, Nick (December 27, 2013). "Teach Kids How To Code And You Give Them A Skill For Life". Forbes. Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  25. ^ Suba, Randell (2014-03-02). "Code.org cashes in on Flappy Bird craze: Code your own Flappy game Read more: http://www.techtimes.com/articles/3874/20140302/code-org-cashes-in-on-flappy-bird-craze-code-your-own-flappy-game.htm#ixzz3KsRyK3Gh". Tech Times. 
  26. ^ Layton, Lyndsey (2014-02-27). "‘Flappy birthday’ to Code.org". The Washington Post. 
  27. ^ Indiegogo https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/an-hour-of-code-for-every-student. Retrieved 19 February 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  28. ^ Cassidy, Mike (December 12, 2013). "Hour of Code builds a deeper understanding of the power of computing". Retrieved January 8, 2014. 
  29. ^ Dvorak, John C. (December 18, 2013). "The Hidden Agenda of Code.org". Retrieved January 8, 2014. 

External links[edit]