Monday, April 9, 2012

Keep Calm and Code On

I love running.  That said, I am often frustrated that I am only a beginner and I have days where I just suck or moments where I can't even get motivated to get out the door.  In these moments, I often look to my community of peers for support. Sometimes, and this is possibly a running nerd confession of some sort- I look to Pinterest.  There's a plethora of inspirational quotes, photos, posters etc for runners- and runners constantly are posting this kind of stuff around them to get inspired. Things like:


Yes, they are a bit cheesy- but in a very real way they are motivating me to go out and run. I think part of it is that a poster on some level is a form of establishing your identity. I put a running poster up- all of a sudden, I'm the real deal- someone who cares about running. On another level, it truly is a constant reminder to stay focused and not lose faith in what I want to do.

I got to thinking a bit about how this same motivational strategy could be applied to webmaking and people who are learning code. Frankly, I made this connection because despite what I say, learning how to design and program for the web is new and can be hard to do. Sometimes, you just need that little dose of inspiration. I wonder, what motivational sayings we could dish out to the newbie webmaker, to keep them motivated while simultaneously allowing them to self identify as webmakers:


Obviously I'm joking around on some level- but I do think that this relates to the work that we are doing on integrating badges into projects like the Missions that I wrote about earlier. I think that we need to develop a community of webmakers, and doing this means elevating role models who users can identify with,  establishing a language around the work that we do- Keep calm and code on, and as always, integrate play into our programs and initiatives.

* note: thanks to Charley Miller for wordsmithing the Keep Calm Code On poster