I am still in the middle of learning Django.

In retrospect, starting with the Official Django Tutorial was a mistake. The tutorial jumps around too much, even in the first chapter; it’s possible to follow the instructions and get your app working, but it probably serves better as a case study rather than a beginner’s tutorial.

Recently, I read Erin Parker’s story about how she learned to program in Ruby on Rails and Objective-C in pursuit of her entrepreneurial goals, and it lifted me a little from my despair that learning Django was taking far longer than I thought it would. Okay, to be fair, I was sidelined a little by my attempts to get more comfortable with Python first. But Django still seemed scary. This was her advice:

Don’t be afraid to go through programming books many, many times! I went through the Michael Hartl Ruby on Rails tutorial 3 times before it finally clicked. […] Don’t be afraid to repeat, repeat, repeat until you’re comfortable with something inside and out. It’s not that you’re not smart – it’s just that repetition is often what it takes.”

I’m happy to report that I just re-read https://docs.djangoproject.com/en/1.5/intro/tutorial01/ after finishing the exercises in http://www.tangowithdjango.com/book/chapters/setup.html and half of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5VlpgEVVg4&list=PLxxA5z-8B2xk4szCgFmgonNcCboyNneMD, and the interactions between the models, views, urls.py and databases, and why syncdb is necessary makes a lot more sense! I can also see better all the ways the official tutorial jumped around, and in some ways got me to confuse the trees for the forest.

Anyway, tldr: don’t give up. Revisit. Read carefully. Re-read.

blog comments powered by Disqus
  • Hi, I'm Linda! I enjoy going to tech meetups, learning web development, and blogging about the learning path. Follow me @LPnotes

Subscribe to The Coding Diaries