A New Route to Programming
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A New Route to Programming

Learn Programming Through Preserving Digital Heritage

About the Book

I like that it is simple enough for anyone to understand :) maybe I will start programming

— an early reader

Learn programming a different way. Learn programming by working through examples of how to preserve your cultural heritage. This book aims to be an on-ramp to all of the excellent technical material that's out there. It will give you the confidence to explore more deeply how programming works and how it can help.

Here are some of the things that we’ll get up to:

  • Learn how computers interpret numbers, text, images and other data
  • Create a comprehensive backup of a website
  • Process a miniature web harvest, using the standards that the Internet Archive uses
  • Extract places and dates from websites
  • Turn Captain James Cook’s journal into an interactive website
  • Provide pointers to further topics such as mobile app development, and data visualisation

About the Author

Tim McNamara
Tim McNamara

Tim is the author of Rust in Action and has extensive experience in using and teaching the language. He has been invited to deliver courses, workshops, and talks across Europe, Oceania, and North America. His background is in AI/ML, specifically natural language processing.

Table of Contents

  • A Motivating Introduction
    • What you will learn
  • Some guiding principles
    • Programming is cultural
    • Programmers use analogies
    • Programmers like to simplify
    • Programming works by building up components
    • Programming works by breaking down problems
    • Programming works by making trade offs
    • Naming things is hard
  • First steps programming
    • Step 1: Open a web browser
    • Step 2: Open its web developer console
    • Step 3: Begin to code
  • How computers interpret information
    • Numbers
    • Text
    • Pictures
    • Dates
    • Lists
    • Truth values
    • Uncertainty
    • Nothingness
  • Create a comprehensive website backup
    • An Overview of the Approach
    • Tools
    • Defining a web page
    • A note about embedded videos
    • Respecting robots.txt
    • How we select specific elements
    • Downloading web sites
    • Compress the downloads

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