This is post number 100 🍾 since I started writing these notes to myself almost 3 years ago. To celebrate, I am writing the motivational notes I really need right now. Because I keep telling myself that “I haven’t learnt JS yet” when that is not quite entirely the whole truth anymore. But if I always convince myself that I don’t know anything — I am continuing to sabotage my future progress. So this post is written to convince myself that I actually do know… something. 🌱

I know what JavaScript is

When I come across a language, library, framework or CS topic I know absolutely nothing about, I often find Wikipedia helpful in making the first introductions. For wikipedia.org/wiki/JavaScript there is basically nothing in the introductory paragraphs of 200+ words that is new to me. So by this Wikipedia standard; I know what JavaScript is. (The concept mentioned that I have least familiarity with, is that JS is multi-paradigm. To-do: read more about programming paradigms maybe.)

MDN has a great section on What is JavaScript? and I know all of this stuff very well. To the point of being able to teach it to newbie web developers. Note to self: this is not nothing.

I know what JavaScript does

Once upon a time, web pages on the internet displayed mostly static text for us to read in a browser. I have worked as a systems developer for over 4 years, I know how complex web applications work. Compared to where I was 5 years ago, this amassed experience is also not nothing.


Variables

  • var was the original old school variable, that I probably don’t need these days
  • let is the recommended variable declaration in modern web development
  • const is the one I probably want to use most of the time because it’s constant

Data types

  • number — 123
  • string — 'All kinds of text!'
  • boolean — a statement that resolves to true or false
  • arrays — ['some item', 'another item', 'even more stuff']
  • objects — { id: 100, topic: 'learning' }
  • undefined — a variable without an assigned value
  • null — points to nothing, often on purpose

Operators

  • Arithmetic: + - * / %
  • Increment ++ and decrement --
  • Assignment = (and I know there are more of ’em)
  • Comparison operators like < > <= >= and also these are important to fully understand:
=== equal (strict! recommended!) ✅
!== non-equal (strict! recommended!) ❌
== these things are the same, but perhaps not the same datatype 🤷🏻‍
!= nope, not equal 🙅🏻‍

Logical operators: AND &&, OR ||, NOT !

Conditionals

  • if...else is something I’m used to reading in code
  • else if also
  • condition ? true : false is a ternary operator that I learnt more recently

Loops

These all make sense to me: for / while / do...while

Functions

I know that I can declare a function and that I can call a function. I know I can give the declaration parameters and then when the function is called, I can pass arguments to it.

function whateverName() {
  // this comment is wrapped in a declaration for a named function
}
const anotherName = () => {
  // this comment is inside an arrow function
}

Let’s see… there’s also anonymous functions, return values, local vs global scope.

Events and more

There’s a whole lot that is still a blur 😜 but I know more than I’ve written up here and what I have written now is… not nothing.


I know that fundamentals > frameworks

…and finally, I do know… that when I’m frustrated and struggling, for a variety of reasons, with learning a specific framework — it’s time to buckle down and focus on fundamentals. 😤