Basic Algorithm Section isn't sticking

I hate to say it, but the Algorithm and following sections are somewhat discouraging. I know for some it’s a matter of just going over the material again, and I’ve gone over the material three or four times now and the information doesn’t seem to be sticking. I’m struggling with every problem past the second exercise in the Basic Algorithm Section and the Functional Programming section is also causing me headaches… I’ll keep going back to the Algorithm section, but each time I feel like I’m heading back to the same MDN or W3schools articles covering the same syntax…like I just can’t remember which term does what for the life of me and I’ve been at this for 3 weeks now…and every two to three days I’ve forgotten what I just learned…maybe something is just wrong with my memory.

Don’t worry, this a normal part of the process.

You can do a couple of things with this situation:

  1. If you find something interesting, build something with it. This will help you better understand what you just learned. If you do that and you are already aware that you will forget it in a couple of days/weeks, do this: (after all, there is the saying, that any code written by you more that 2 weeks ago, is as if it has been written by another person)
    Practice clean code. Write your code in such a way, use comments, so that whenever you go back, you will understand what you have written down.

  2. What you are doing now, going to MDN and W3schools, is already great! Trust me, this probably will not really change, since no one can remember everything.

  3. Just keep going. This is also a part of the road. It is absolutely normal not to remember everything, or not to understand something on the first try. But eventually, with practice and continuous effort it will be possible.
    Don’t get discouraged if a problem takes a long time!

  4. Read, Search, Ask.
    Read: Make sure to reread the task again. Try to understand everything to the best of your ability.
    Search: As you are doing now, the next step is looking for answers out there on the internet.
    Ask: We are all here to help :wink: if something still isn’t clear, after following these steps, just ask in the forum!

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Thank you for the extensive answer. The community here is very positive and helpful and that’s not what I’m used to elsewhere on the internet. I will definitely take your advice to heart and keep going. I think part of my issue is my reasons for learning to code are more for the sake of just knowing it than for any job prospects or future projects. But that’s less of a coding issue and more of a motivation issue. Thanks for the advice, I will definitely take it to heart and I greatly appreciate it.

As far as I am concerned any motivation goes. Since I am assuming that you actually mean not only ‘knowing’, but knowing, so that you have the potential to apply, for whatever you might want to do so, probably the first point could be the most valuable.

Quick personal reference:
I remember that as a kid I would frequently look at cardboards and not understand anything on them. This fascinated me quite a bit, and after years I suddenly remembered this experience in a physics class and all of a sudden I realized, that now it all made sense. Was kind of cool for me, and this was also focused very much on ‘just knowing it’.

What I aim to say is: Check out other peoples code and see what you can understand. With the proper documentation (meaning clean code), I think you could be surprised at how much you will already understand and perhaps this can give you additional motivation to keep going.

Additionally this will kind of train you to accept not understanding everything on the first try/day/week/month, but it will also give you a glimpse of how the basics are really always (pretty much) the same.

Hi @tomit4 !

Welcome to the forum!

Getting comfortable with algorithms is a skill that just takes time and practice.

For extra practice, you could try these sites.

Codewars (start with the 8kyu problems because that is the beginner level)

Hackerrank

Leetcode

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Thanks, yes execept for HackerRank, I’ve come across these. I’ll look into Codewars and see what they have to offer first and then go onto the others. Thanks for the encouragement and resources. I appreciate it!

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