01. What is Programming?

Put simply, “Programming” involves instructing a computer on how to display an application/program and how to react when someone uses it. You encounter computer programs all the time, in fact to look at this web page would have involved the use of many programs, most notably a web browser. Somebody (or more likely a team of people) made that web browser and they would be considered computer programmers.

But making a web browser is a pretty big ask for someone new to programming so let’s start by considering a much smaller application. What about a calculator?

Windows Calculator

This is the calculator program that comes with Windows XP

Even without knowing a single thing about how to make a computer program you can probably see that making that calculator above would be a lot easier than making the web browser you’re looking at this webpage through.

Programming involves writing the source code or computer instructions that allow a user to interact with your program correctly.  So when you press on the “7” button of that calculator above you expect the number seven to appear on the screen right? Well working out how to do things like that is Computer Programming.

So what does a computer program’s “source code” or “computer instructions” look like?

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