The Code Gardener's Almanac

Kevin McGillivray
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This book is currently in progress! As an early bird supporter, you'll receive updates as each section of the book is published.

A developer's guide to practicing creativity and making enchanting software

Do you have an itch to build a programming side project but aren't sure where to start? Are you finally starting to get the hang of programming, only to be left wondering, "now what should I make?" Do you feel dispirited by endless two-week sprints, confounding codebases, and tumultuous job markets and wonder if there's a better way?

Whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out, The Code Gardener's Almanac offers approachable lessons on programming as a creative practice. In this mysterious handbook you'll learn why creativity is a skill and how to practice it like any other skill. You'll also learn how to apply new creative skills to build the project of your dreams, navigate uncertain career changes, and collaborate with your team to make enchanting software.

Almost every developer was drawn to programming for its ability to bring ideas to life and the satisfaction of practicing a craft. The Code Gardener's Almanac will help you tap into this thrill and satisfaction, giving you the tools to expand your creative skills and find fun, wonder, and curiosity in your programming craft. So, why wait? Continue your journey towards a more creative and fulfilling career in software engineering today with The Code Gardener's Almanac.

πŸ“– Table of Contents

Introduction β€” The Enchantment of Code

  • Disenchanted: creative problems for programmers
  • In the garden of code: the four layers of programming skills
    • Syntax skills
    • Programmatic thinking skills
    • Interdisciplinary skills
    • Creative skills
  • In this almanac: useful guidance, gentle encouragement, and funny games
  • Why I want to help
  • It's time to plant and enchant

Part 1 β€” Programming is a Creative Practice

  • Refactoring creativity
    • Creativity is a mystery
    • Creativity is a paradox
    • Creativity is a skill
  • Re-enchanting programming
  • How to practice creativity
    • Separate concerns
    • Iterate the control flow
    • Start with "Hello, world!"

Part 2 β€” Code Gardening: How to Make Enchanting Software

  • Programming is a gardening game
  • Winter: planning and watching
    • Make an enchanting site plan
    • Keep a garden log
    • Gather raw materials

πŸ‘†Sections above available for download! πŸŒΌπŸ›πŸŒΊπŸ

πŸ‘‡ Sections below in progress, to be published in biweekly updates! πŸŒ±πŸŒ¦πŸŒΏβ˜€οΈ

  • Spring: preparing and seeding
    • A codebase is a garden and a workshop
    • Sketch in the real world
    • Repair and refactoring are creative
  • Summer: growing and tending
    • Move at an enjoyable pace
    • Reduce batch size and increase frequency
    • Tend to each scale
    • Wander and weed
    • Be a debugging entomologist
  • Fall: harvesting and celebrating
    • How to harvest
    • Check in with the degree of life
    • Throw a convivial garden party

🦀 Early bird supporters and gardening club

This book is a work in progress! A full rough draft of the book is complete, and I'm publishing each section as I edit and finalize the draft. As an early bird supporter, you'll be an early visitor to the code garden, and we all know early birds get lots of seeds and lovely worms. I'll send you updates and notifications of new sections available to download as the writing progresses, and I'm eager to hear your chirps, comments, questions, and feedback so I can make it helpful for you. Join me in the garden! πŸ„

I want this!

The Code Gardener's Almanac Ebook, early bird updates and previews, behind the garden wall peeks

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75 pages


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The Code Gardener's Almanac

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I want this!