You may be hyper aware that we’re huge, nerdy fans of jQuery. (We have its poster up in our room.) Which is is why it was such a no-brainer for our cohorts over at Aquent Gymnasium to build an entire free course around it.
Even though we wrote a blog post all about it when the class launched, we thought it might benefit some for a more in-depth look at why it’s such an important tool to add to your Super Dev Tool Belt.
So here’s a deeper dive for you, a repost of an Aquent interview with Web Developer and Gymnasium instructor Dave Porter about why this front-end technology takes a front seat on the web development bus.
“jQuery,” Dave says, “takes care of so many things for you. You don’t have to remember the stupid little tricks it takes to do anything. It’s a paradigm shift.”
Dave thinks not. Having tried himself to move back and forth between the two approaches, he cautions others that in doing so they will “get stuck thinking about the same things in two different ways.” Instead, he says, “Be prepared to go all the way over to the dark side.”
When designing this course, Dave explains, “The challenge was figuring out what to focus on.”
The guiding principle that he and Gymnasium’s Academic Director, Jeremy Osborn, settled on was to show students how to do a few specific things with jQuery (creating an image carousel, for example) but along the way to really teach them “where to look and how to look to see what jQuery can do.”
In other words, the main goal of the course is to provide students with a toolset for figuring out how to use jQuery for any problem they’re facing. One way Dave accomplishes that goal, for example, is by introducing students to the plug-in ecosystem and providing them with a structure for seeking solutions there.
With that in mind, when asked what the next step would be for any student completing the course, Dave simply says, “To go off and start solving your own problems with jQuery.”
As to whether or not students will find jQuery as powerful and useful as he suggests, Dave puts it this way, “It will save their bacon.”