I broke and looked at the Code!

I was trying to figure out how to create the Weather App and just didn’t have a clue. I have been Googling it and trying my best not to look at the src code of the example but I broke. Now that I have looked at it I realize 2 things:

  1. I am a cheat.
  2. There is no way I would have been able to do it anyway.
    I really wanted to learn how to code, I wanted it for so many reasons that I won’t even go into. But if I should know how to do these things already in this course then it’s obviously way above my mental potential. Looking at the src code was wrong and I wish I hadn’t done it. I guess that puts me out of that test anyway. I don’t know where to go to from here. I have come to really look forward to my time spent on freecodecamp but I have been through all of the lessons twice and I simply forget what I have learned seconds after I have been shown. I have to take my hat off to the rest of you guys, I really don’t know how you do it, I can’t retain the information… I don’t want to give up and probably won’t, but I think I’ve reached the end point of this course. I think I will have to opt for a course for dummies.
1 Like


You can do it, I promise.

In my opinion, the FreeCodeCamp lessons give you a basic understanding of what the topic is about. You need to try to expand your knowledge with other sources, like tutorials on the web, watching other people’s code, etc. I don’t think you did wrong examining the code if you got stuck —that’s better than doing nothing and quit. Just try to make it your way now and find something new to implement to your code.

Coding is about solving problems, and sometimes that’s overwhelming. That doesn’t mean you’re not made for this, it just means you need to learn. Maybe other’s get the basics a little faster but, who told you you’re not going to grasp other topics faster that them? The more you learn, the most chances you have to find the thing you’re a rockstar in.

You’re not a cheat. You just need to take a break, a deep breath and continue making progress. Learn by doing, don’t just read.

Keep coding!

1 Like

There’s no point banging your head against a wall, the easiest way to figure out how something works (if you can’t figure it out from a description + your own current knowledge) is to look and understand how it works.


Hi SpaniardDev, I’m really happy you responded to my post because I felt really down. It’s so kind of you to try to buck me up and I truly appreciate it. You are right in what you said and I promise you I won’t give up. I have been checking out all kinds of documentation and it’s unbelievable how much support I have found from other people like yourself. You have made me feel like less of a fool and your message was exactly what I needed right now. Thank you.

1 Like

You’re welcome! No pain no gain! :smiley:

Gosh… who made that law that you can’t look at other people’s code? It’s not cheating looking at other’s code to learn.

As a developer, you’ll likely be looking, reading and understanding other people’s code (or your old code from many years ago) rather than always writing new ones from scratch.

You can also learn a lot from looking at other’s code, and examples.

*** and if you do looked at other’s code JUST TO PASS the FCC exams and challenges, well… I don’t care either. Because the only person you’re cheating is yourself, not me.

But if you’re using it to LEARN, that’s not cheating.


You should take this course on edx called how to code simple data.


Hi owel, when you put it like that it makes sense. I’m actually being a bit of a cry baby about this and it’s time I grow up and start thinking like a developer. It’s not too important how I learn as long as I learn, and I’m in complete agreement with you. Your comments have caused me to alter my way of thinking about it. I mean how could I do it any other way, I have to see the code otherwise I’d never know what it looks like, let alone, what it does. Cheers to you owel.

Thank you Ifaudreejr, I will have a look at the link you sent me.

I appreciate your response DanCouper and you are right in what you say. I am so glad that I posted my recent comments because I was so close to giving up. The support I have received from developers on freecodecamp has really made a huge difference. If ever I am successfull in becoming a developer I will owe you all a great debt of gratitude.

1 Like

Hi SpaniarDeb,

Forgetting stuff is the one thing I get annoyed about on FCC. How do you remember stuff if you are only applying it in a small very easy codebit and you’re swallowing dozens of them in a short period of time?

You don’t of course.

As for looking at the code, man, I always feel like that. I cannot read a question on stack overflow without feeling small and humbled. But when I look at my own code, stuff I wrote a year ago, I feel like it’s been written by an extra-terrestrial intelligence.

It’s completely normal to feel that way. Your first code is not going to be lean and clean. It’s going to be messy and full of variables you don’t really need and horrible nested for loops that are only complicating matters.

That’s normal too. First you write crappy code that will only work after a long period of suffering and despair and then slowly you learn how to get rid of repeating code and how to find more elegant solutions.

But hey, there is an upside to it. You looked at the code, AND HAVE FORGOTTEN IT ALREADY! Don’t believe for a second that you now ‘know’ how to do it. You have a few general guidelines maybe but you will have to fill in the details yourself. (even if you look five more times at that code). Actually, I think this shows you are rather able, otherwise it would have looked like Chinese to you, wouldn’t it? So don’t worry, take that weather app and start coding now.

And anyway, I’ve done the Weather App and other frontend challenge, but I am still looking up the difference between slice() and splice(). The question is not what you remember, the question is : can I ask the right question that will bring me to the desired answer? (google) For that you need to know what a frontend app is, the right context in which you have to work, the problems you actually have to solve and that IS NOT TAUGHT! Anywhere, believe me, I looked You more or less figure that out while coding and it is a horrible nightmare.

If you are still enjoying yourself, DO NOT GIVE UP but that is condition because the valleys of despair are deep and long. The more I get into this, the more I believe that enjoying it is the true prerequisite and the true evaluator of your capacity and skills. If you have to force yourself to do is, ask yourself why and what it is you do enjoy. You can use this period of learning to figure out who you are, negatively or positively.

Hi SpaniardDev,

I just wrote but I need to add this. The problem is not that you cheated or that you cheated again. And again. The danger however is that you continue to compare what you write with the solution and try to stay within the framework of that solution. Even when that eventually comes down to real cheating there is a much greater danger here: that you wil not be writing your own (very crappy?) code anymore and that you are constantly comparing yourself to an ideal. That, my dear friend, will be a slow poison seeping into your brain and it will destroy all the light and happiness that code brought into your life. LET GO. Dive into the pit again. And ask for help. A lot.

Take care,

Hi mientje, I really enjoyed reading your response to my post and what you point out makes a lot of sense. You have a way with words and I’m quite sure, you have a way with code too. I found myself relating to everything you had to say and I must confess to having had a bit of a giggle at myself because I have… FORGOTTEN IT ALREADY, in fact, I forgot the src code 2 seconds after I looked at it. You are right also when you said (basically this) “You must have learned something otherwise you wouldn’t have known what you were looking at” (you said it better). I am still enjoying every second of my coding journey and know on a deep level that it will take a lot more than a few headaches, anger attacks and stumbling blocks to make me stop. As previously stated I am pleasantly surprised by the positive response that I have received and really thank everyone who answered my post for their kind words and support.

Thank you for the compliment, I’ve been trying to think up a smart answer but this time I am quite lost for words :slight_smile:

That’s ok meintje, it happens to the best of us :grinning:
PS: I still can’t get one of these XMLHttpRequests to work for me :weary:

If after a bit it’s not working for you then you shouldn’t waste more time. Take a step back and see what you know, and then grow.

Break down the problem into what you think should occur in general terms without code. Compare again in general terms, what someone else did. See 2 or 3 styles. If you do that, you’ll see the code better. Also think of other things that you can do with the weather app design. Like baseball scores. Try to build on what you have learned. Break down the processes and you’ll see it’s all similar.

You just changed your brain, don’t let it go back!

Still stuck? I’d start a new topic and send some code so I can look at it.

Scot, this is EXACTLY how I feel. I’m just getting started and in the same boat. I keep wondering how people remember all this stuff? I’m only in HTML right now and when I think about CSS, and boy o’ boy, “JavaScript”, it scares the bejeezes outta me. I’d like to get into coding, it looks cool and there are endless possibilities, but for me, I’m in my mid 40’s and I don’t seem to grasp things like I did in the past. I always, always wonder if this is the right thing for me to do. It’s going to take years for me to get all this stuff down to where I might have enough knowledge to land a job. But for you, if you’re younger, you have more time and all you have to do is just keep at it. Keep learning. It might seem like a struggle, but eventually things should fall into place little by little.

I don’t understand how you found HTML hard. HTML is so easy that you can finish the basics in 1 day.

Css is a bit more harder but it’s still easy. You can finish it in 1 day. That being said, Html and CSS are not programming. They are just markup languages. All you have to do is just slap some elements like div and some style and BOOM! You made a website’s homepage in 3 days.

However, programming generally needs much more than that but it’s not impossible. Javascript is kinda easy. You just need to set up your brain for programming by practicing and solving algorithms.
Also, you don’t need to remember them all. Just google them and you will find stuff you need, by practicing you will save them without feeling anyway…

If you have never been exposed to HTML, it could definitely be considered hard to understand. As far as the HTML in the FCC curriculum, someone can easily work through the challenges in 1 or 2 days, but that only scratches the surface of what is possible.

Understanding all the various aspects of CSS takes much longer than one day (weeks and months are more like it). However, someone could definitely finish the CSS portions of the FCC curriculum in 1-3 days. However, the FCC curriculum only teaches about 5% of what is possible to learn about CSS.

BTW - HTML and CSS are programming, because they both require learning and using syntax in a specific way and ordering elements on the page. There is definitely logic involved (especially when it comes to laying out the page to make it responsive).

1 Like