“An understanding of computer science is becoming increasingly essential in today’s world. Our national competitiveness depends upon our ability to educate our children – and that includes our girls – in this critical field.“
Sheryl Sandberg, 臉書(Facebook)營運長
首先我們談一下什麼是程式設計? 這包含很多的意思。在矽谷、在加州灣區、在各個創業的聚集地，最普遍的是了解如何用網路及行動手機的軟體來做出產 品，重點是使用程式語言來控制電腦，讓電腦幫我們做事，這是21世紀最基本的技能。
我認為矽谷傳達給這個世界最有力的訊息之一就是這一點 — 通過創造，動手建構來增強自我的能耐。如果有更多的人用創業的精神做東西，我想這個世界會變成一個更好的地方，因為你可以自己解決問題。舉個用軟體解決問題的例子吧，譬如我想將我所有的朋友以及認識的人用某種方式儲存起來，但沒有現成的產品有這種功能，我可以很簡單的創造一個APP來用，因為我會寫程式，所以可以這麼做。然後誰曉得呢？也許有人會覺得對他們非常有用，我可以賣給他，如果這個APP做得很好，搞不好會變成一個生意呢! 不是嗎?
Talk about coding. Why is it important for people to learn at a very young age? How must you and your friends learn how to code?
What is knowing how to code first of all? It's knowing how to program. And that has a lot of meaning. The most common type of coding in silicone valley and bay area and some of the other major startup hubs is understanding how to build an app or build the product. In software obviously, to use like web-based, mobile-based or whatever. The point is that knowing how to control a computer by telling it what to do through code is one of the fundamental skills of the 21st century.
Everybody knows that computer and technology are taking over the world. In a few decades i believe there will two classes of people, those who know how to code, who know how to control computer and those who don't. And if you don't know how to code, you are going to be at a disadvantage. I'm not saying that you need to be a professional software engineers for your entire life. But I think that it's possible that to have a career doing something that you love, but still understand computing, understand computers, understand programming. And my belief is that the type of structure and logic and analysis and thought that's required to build computer programs is really useful for just being a generally effective human being. So understanding how to make something happen and like how to create an algorithm, like how to hook something up, is just a very powerful way of thinking.
At the same time, another sort of point of view on knowing how to code is that uniquely, it's a skill that allows you to create something from scratch. so I think that this culture of making and building is something that a lot more children should be learning when they are young. and should be taught more from elementary school all the way up to college.
I'm not talking about studying a fact like memorizing it. I'm talking about being creative and building something from zero. So it's like thinking an idea up in your head and then having the power in your own hands with the computer to make it a reality and to make it something that the other people can use.
I think that type of thought about self empowerment and creation and making and building is one of the most powerful narratives that silicon valley has to convey to the rest of the world.
If more people took the type of entrepreneurial initiative and just made things, i think the world will be a much better place. Because that you can make solution to your problems. Like one very common thing to do with software to ..oh, if you face inconvenience like I need to store my contacts in a certain way but there's nothing good out there to do it. I can just create a simple web app for me to do myself And that's possible if I know how to code. And who knows, maybe the other people will find it extremely useful and i can sell it and it may become a business if it's good enough.
And again to be clear, I'm not advocating that everybody become a full time programmer and make money doing it as an engineer. What I'm advocating is that people should understand computers, should understand code, should understand programming. And a lot of that is just like tinkering with stuff on the side. I started to make websites when I was like 9 or 10 just because it interests me. I've made all my website. I started by making my personal website. I started by just getting interested in what other people were building and designing things. And as I went through more and more versions of my website, it started looking better and better and better. And there is a place online for me to express myself. Because this is my home online. and this is where other people are going to come to like look me up. So what kind of image do I want to project? If I know how to code, if I know how to design, I can control that. and that's really awesome.