It seems like everybody is learning to code these days. But why should you learn to code? We look at all the reasons for becoming a coder, and offer some advice on how to learn coding.
Learning to code a computer is being talked about a lot at the moment. Children as young as five are being taught how to program computers, and adults are being encouraged to pick up code skills no matter what their career is. Steve Jobs said "I think everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer because it teaches you how to think."
The government is doing its bit too. Every year seven child (aged 11 to 13) in the UK is set to receive a free BBC Micro Bit. So the question is: why the sudden rush to get everybody coding? In this feature, we'll look at why there's a big push to get everybody coding, and why you should learn to code.
Why you should learn to code: software is automating the world.
Computers have always made things easier or have done difficult tasks more quickly than humans ever could. But there's a whole new frontier of software heading your way that combines Artificial Intelligence (AI) with Machine Learning (ML). Don't worry if you don't understand either of these things; you'll hear about them anyway.
Computers have been traditionally good at doing things humans find hard (like calculating the first 1000 prime numbers), but lousy at doing the things even babies can do (like recognise the difference between a dog and a cat). But AI and ML are changing all that, and computers are now getting good at doing both.
The net result is that there are loads of dull, repetitive, tasks like accounting and document checking that are set to be performed by computers. Some people fear change, but this is a good thing. Coders are set to take a lot of the drudgery out of life for millions of people. There is a downside, though...
Learn to code because robots are taking our jobs
We really can't overstate just how much the robot economy is going to change things. It turns out that AI and ML are set to arrive alongside a huge rise in mobile robotics. These new robots are capable of moving freely around an environment, and can perform all kinds of manual tasks.
From self-driving trucks to retail sales robots, there's no end of robots marching along, chomping away the jobs as they go. The outlook is gloomy for a lot of people, with up to 50 percent of all currently performed jobs predicted to go in the next 20 years.
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