WLHS’s Hour of Code gives insight into the world of computer coding

Today, learn simple computer commands, even if you haven’t coded before


Students may have noticed posters taped to the walls around the school that display popular figures –Barack Obama and Chris Bosh, for example– and their quotations about the advancement of technology. “Don’t just play with your phone; program it,” said one poster. Each poster is meant to promote West Linn High School’s Hour of Code event, which is today during academic time in the Media Center.

“The Hour of Code is a time when people can learn about coding,” Davis Hayter, junior and computer science student, said. “It’s basically an opportunity to learn about everything that people use in their day-to-day life, whether it’s electronics, all the games they play, all the programs they use for school and whatnot. As we start to get further and further along in technology, coding and computer science is all the sudden starting to become a little more important.”

Though the Hour of Code is a global movement, with events occurring in Russia, South America and the Pacific Islands, each chapter operates independently and WLHS’s Hour of Code occurs two days after the official Hour of Code day (Dec. 8). This is the second year for Hour of Code event at WLHS.

“You’ll get an insight how the game Flappy Bird or Tiny Wings are made– the blueprints of them,” Hayter said. “You don’t really know how complicated it is to make a bird fly on the iPhone until you try coding.”

In movies like the “Social Network,” Hayter pointed out, coding is as easy as pulling open a window on a computer and starting to type. Those who attend the Hour of Code won’t be able to code for an entire website, yet they will be able to code a message, such as “Hello, world.”

“It sounds really simple, but at the end of it it’s really cool,” Hayter said. “We think that computers are really smart things, when really, they’re not smart at all. You have to be smarter than your computer.”