Fun Things to Do with JavaScript as a Beginner

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Fun Things to Do with JavaScript as a Beginner

Among programming languages commonly learned today, JavaScript remains on top. According to a language ranking by RedMonk (posted on ZDNet), JavaScript comes in just ahead of Python — a new second-best — and Java. Python tends to get the hype these days though as the language testing Java/JavaScript supremacy and becoming popular among rising programmers.

 This suggests, as some believe, that JavaScript may eventually be overtaken as the top option in the programming world.

For now though, many are still taking the time to learn it. And even if it may not always be the premier language for high-end programming projects, it still has a lot to offer — even for beginners who are only dabbling in computer programming.

To that final point, we’ve decided to highlight a few of the specific things you can have fun doing with JavaScript as a relative beginner.

These might not be the projects you’re ultimately learning the language for, but they speak well to its utility and versatility even today.

Design a Game

 Undoubtedly, one of the very coolest things you can do while learning JavaScript is design your own online video game. This may sound like a lot, but a DigitalTrends list of awesome JavaScript and HTML5 games will show you that there are a lot of online games that are great fun to play, but fairly simple to design. Puzzles, text adventures, and even some more action-packed games are all on the table.

Granted it might be a little bit of a stretch to call this a beginner project. But in many cases a game design will be a big project more than a particularly complex one.

It’s easy enough to find research materials and tutorials that will help you with the specific design concepts at hand.

Program an Arduino

If you’re more software-oriented and haven’t given much thought to Arduino before, this is worth a quick explanation.

An Arduino is effectively a programmable hardware board that can pair with software in order to function.

More to the point, Altium’s Arduino schematics guide describes these boards as being great platforms for hobbyists and those interested in getting started with new, functional designs. 

JavaScript is not the traditional programming pairing with Arduino. But you can absolutely design a project through which you can control an Arduino device via JavaScript.

There’s a guide to an LED light Arduino project on Medium that gets into some of the details — including why and how to use the Node.js environment to make this kind of application work.

But ultimately, a relative beginner can make a working Arduino device with help from JavaScript. 

Build an App

As much as we hear about the successes of app developers, we hear relatively little about the languages used in the development — at least compared to websites and web applications. But for those who aren’t clear on the matter, JavaScript is one of the most popular languages in app development as well.

And an app can arguably be a simpler project than a lot of other possibilities. Another perk is that some apps designed through JavaScript are actually better able to function on both Android and iOS devices, while other apps will perform better for one than the other.

Ultimately a complex app can still be a very involved, advanced task. But for a beginner looking to improve with JavaScript, taking on a relatively simple app can be an excellent early project. 

Enhance Your Website’s SEO 

This final point is one that was covered quite recently in the article ‘How Can JavaScript Affect SEO?’ In that article, the point was actually that websites heavy with JavaScript can perform more slowly with Google’s search bot, resulting in inferior SEO performance as compared to HTML-based sites.

To some extent this is actually an argument to build a website of your own via another language, if you’re concerned about SEO. On the other hand, it’s also a learning opportunity.

As explained in the aforementioned article, applying Isomorphic or Universal JavaScript can speed up the indexing of your pages by Google’s bot, and this in and of itself can be a good project for a beginner to undertake. 

The main focus as you’re learning JavaScript should still be the fundamentals. Learning how the language really works is more important than working out how to perform a given task with it.

At the same time though, fun projects can test you, expand your learning, and keep you interested. In that respect, all of the above are good to keep in mind.

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Digamber - Author

Hi, I'm Digamber Singh, a New Delhi-based full-stack developer, tech author, and open-source contributor with 10+ years' experience in HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, and WordPress.