I am a Product Manager, not a developer. Do I even need to know how to code? A question that many PMs ask themselves, including those who studied Computer Science in college.

My answer is a very certain Yes. I think everyone involved with the development of a product, regardless of their role, should know how software is built.

I came from a Product Design background and knew nothing of coding when I started building apps. Since day one I felt there was a gap in my wisdom :), for every time I looked at the concept, there was a great part of it that I did not fully comprehend. It intimidated me, and I did not like that. So I started poking at the “insides” of the products I was working on. The world that opened to me was fascinating! Seeing how software “talks” took my passion to a whole new level. I’ve always been interested in collecting and analyzing data, so after playing with HTML, CSS, and MySQL, diving into Python was natural. I knew that that was the language I wanted to speak. Was it difficult to learn? Thanks to the vast amount of resources available online and the Py global community, learning the language was easier than I expected, and the learning process is never done.

Will I ever transition to an engineer? Probably not. Working on the concept, UX optimization, and studying user behavior are still my favorite skills, but now I know exactly what’s happening behind the scenes and speak the “machine” language.

This Summer I got a bit more free time on my hands and took the Intensive Python Course at CodeCademy.  I loved the projects included in the course, some of them were actually challenging! I am currently taking Harvard’s CS50: Introduction to Computer Science, and even though I like their course more, I’d still wouldn’t discard CodeCademy, because the concept behind this particular platform – albeit clunky at times – is much user friendlier. If you are completely new to coding, I’d give CodeCademy a chance, they offer lots of their courses for free!

Hey, I speak Parseltongue. 😉 And so should you!

-M