I have wanted to code since I was a kid. I got my first computer at 8 and taught myself rudimentary BASIC. I have always wanted to do more, really understand what it takes to program useful and meaningful software. You know, something beyond the “Hello World!”s and endless lines of “Will is cool!” running down the screen of a monochrome monitor. To this end I have decided to attempt teaching myself to code. I am going to start with Java as I have recently taken an introductory class and I feel like Java is a great language to start with due to its wide use and the many texts and tutorials available for free online. I thought about starting with Python as well, but settled on Java. I intend on documenting my trials and tribulations here along with laying out the path I will take and even posting coding problems, examples and ideas. When I have finished, should I be successful, I would like this blog to be a useful guideline to other non-traditional learners on how to go about teaching yourself to code, for free, online. My goal is to approach programming in such a way that I truly understand the nuances of different aspects of coding. I will attempt to discuss the language used by programmers and share the ways in which I was able to understand concepts. This is my preface, my next post will be about my overall plan and I’ll attempt to give this plan some structure in the short term.