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How do I make mediocre stuff like you?

Posted Jan. 5, 2014, 6:54 p.m.


Inspiration

What I've learned over the years is that you can accomplish a lot with your free time. It took me years to let myself use that time for hobbies as time-consuming as programming, but that's the main point - you have to give yourself permission.

It's easy to say "who am I kidding?" or assume that others view your work as sub-par. Most people think they have nothing to say to the world, and so never attempt creative expression. Let yourself do so and you'll see that working on your own projects is extremely rewarding, teaches discipline, and (for me, at least) makes the world a little more real and magical - something that can be changed and improved. Creators are surprisingly few, and we need them.


Study

If you're interested in web development - or just want to know what it is - head to Codecademy immediately. Their interactive teaching style is second to none.

If you're interested in making computer games, make one with whatever you have - including a graphing calculator. I've seen interesting games made in Powerpoint, of all things. The sooner you learn what goes into programming interactive logic systems the better, so don't worry about learning a new tool until you understand how you would use such a thing. When you understand a little more, check out Pixel Prospector.


Spare Change

The web and game projects I've done didn't cost very much.

For a web project you'll need:


  1. A domain name: $7 - $13 per year through Namecheap

  2. Hosting: $2 - $20 per month depending on traffic through A Small Orange

Game development costs vary wildly with the scope of a project, but I've done pretty much everything for free. Simple projects don't need expensive tools. Check out free resources available on Pixel Prospector. They've got everything from art to programming right there.

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