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How did you learn JavaScript?

I'm having a really difficult time getting a good solid understanding of JavaScript. It's my first real programming language. Every section of tutorial I read and/or every video here at Treehouse I watch just makes me realize that I know very little and I don't know where to start to really get it.

With css, it was easy to know what to practice. With JavaScript, I feel overwhelmed with new information. I fully understand what an object is, and what an array is, and so forth. So what? I feel like I need a clear vision of what can be done with this once I wrap my brain around it all and get good at it. Then I need a clear path on how to learn and understand how to actually do something.

Does that make sense? Does anyone have any thoughts/insights?

4 Answers

Mário Rodrigues
Mário Rodrigues
Courses Plus Student 3,336 Points

Read the book "Javascript: The good parts", with time you'll notice that Javascript is a complex language with very dark corners, specially when each browser implements it differently. Google for "Building framework in javascript" and you'll get a good insight about how libraries like jQuery are built and others. Just keep it simple, play with forms, try to make a little game (it's really easy). If you fell that you don't have a solid base in programming, I'm going to repeat my advice that I tell to every new programmers, solve programming contests problems. That's how you get a solid base in programming, after that the rest it's just a matter of work (usually repetitive tasks) and learn a new way to program/write ( Learning a new language, a new paradigm (Functional - Haskell Lang) ).

"JavaScript and JQuery: The Missing Manual" is a great book to use, along with "Professional JavaScript for web developers".

I'll be honest, though I prefer to use Treehouse, I found a clearer understanding of how I can use JavaScript and JQuery a bit better over at Lynda. It's a lot drier, but definitely helps.

I fully understand what an object is

I won't say this if I were you, OOP in Javascript is complicated, you can hardly ever master at it.

Ok, now let's talk about how to get you out of the trouble. Let's assume you have known all snippets of Javascript, but then what!? You can't say you know Javascript without projects, try to build some projects from small to huge, and you'll get the answer.

Thank you all for your replies!

I've decided to take a step back and try to get a better Intro to Computer Science and/or Intro to Programming type base before jumping fully back into things.

In the meantime, I'm continuing to read and dabble and read and dabble, and I'm feeling a bit better already.

Hopefully in a month or so, I'll be coming back to your replies and checking reviews on the specific books and resources you all recommended. Mario, I had already downloaded Douglas Crockford's lecture videos recommended here:


Thanks again, everyone, for your help.

Good Luck, Gary!

Everyone get stuck here and there, asking for others will help you improve