If you’ve met me at all, you might realize that I love discussing web development and exchanging tutorials/resources and tips with other people. Naturally, when I heard a woman with a computer engineering background at a javascript meetup talk about picking up jQuery via a free Kindle e-book, my ears perked up.

“Which e-book?” I said, curious.

She told me to scroll down to the bottom of jQuery.com and click on one of the links there. Funny, in all time I’ve been using jQuery, I’d never paid much attention to the links at the bottom of jQuery.com — but lo and behold, there it was: jQuery Succinctly by Cody Lindley, free downloadable e-book.


Turns out this isn’t the only free e-book offered by Syncfusion, the publisher; I quickly found the full list at http://www.syncfusion.com/resources/techportal/ebooks and gleefully downloaded Javascript Succinctly (because I wanted to review prototypal inheritance) and Node.JS Succinctly onto my Kindle as well.

I should caveat that in general, I’m using other, more comprehensive resources to review Javascript objects and dip into NodeJS — but when it comes to finding ways to spend my time efficiently during a subway commute, I’ve been struggling with scroll exhaustion, wifi outages and blank screens when I try to use my iPhone’s screen to load up developer docs on the web.

Kindle presents such a nicer reading experience on the phone, and the best part was that I didn’t need wifi or spend a lot of money to read these books! Yay for productivity!


Okay. My second revelation during the javascript meetup occurred when I realized that the only reason I’ve found learning programming in tandem with other people rather productive was because we asked each other questions all the time

For example:

Person A: What is X?
Person B: I think it has something to do with Y.
Person A: Oh, really? *starts Googling*
Person A: Ah, I see, this tutorial defines X as YZ and… wait, I don’t understand this part. What does that mean when it says Y is a function of XYZ?
Person B: *starts reading too* I think it means that ZYX. Here, look at this explanation above from ABC.
Person A: That makes sense now! They’re the same thing.
Person B: Yeah, I understand it now too. Thanks for figuring it out with me.

A commenter on one of my previous blog posts mentioned “spaced repetition quizzing” from this book as a good way to make concepts stick, and I am intrigued; I am tempted to type out all my future notes in question/answer quiz format now.

Of course, writing quiz questions for review isn’t exactly a novel concept; I didn’t go through sixteen years of schooling without writing out questions for Spanish class or testing myself using flashcards.

On the other hand, I haven’t approached note-taking in programming the same way, because I’ve been learning on the job — i.e. in a non-academic setting. Maybe it’s time to start.

To be continued!

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

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