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← Office Hours 1 - Web Development

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Showing Revision 7 created 05/25/2016 by Udacity Robot.

  1. Alright everybody, this is going to be Office Hours
  2. for Unit 1. Thank you all for participating so far in
  3. taking the class. I hope itâÂÂs been informative for
  4. you so far, weâÂÂre going to â that was the easy
  5. stuff. So after this you know weâÂÂre going to get
  6. into some of the tricky things. So JohnâÂÂs found
  7. some questions from the forums that weâÂÂre going
  8. to go through that you guys have all had. So, letâÂÂs
  9. go.
  10. Okay, well the first question is about Google App
  11. Engine and people had a lot of questions about
  12. Google App Engine. How it works? How to get it
  13. running? Problems they had. Whether we were
  14. going to need to use it? So just if we could go
  15. over all of that stuff real quick.
  16. Okay, so to answer your question first or to take it
  17. from the top basically. We chose Google App
  18. Engine because we thought it would be the
  19. Engine because we thought it would be the
  20. website online. Believe it or not, even after
  21. reading the forums I still believe itâÂÂs the easiest
  22. way to get something online. That said, if you
  23. donâÂÂt want to use it, you donâÂÂt have to. All of the
  24. homeworks are going to be structured with the
  25. same basic format which is submit a URL that
  26. does âÂÂXâÂÂ. So if you can get a URL online that does
  27. âÂÂXâÂÂ, great. So if you want to run this off your local
  28. machine, use Apache, whatever, youâÂÂre allowed
  29. to do that. But I am going to be teaching all the
  30. lessons using Google App Engine, that will be
  31. what IâÂÂll â thatâÂÂs what IâÂÂll be demoing in the class,
  32. thatâÂÂs what IâÂÂll be working from and thatâÂÂs
  33. generally what IâÂÂll be talking about.
  34. So the way Google App Engine works, the idea is
  35. youâÂÂre just writing these Python files, and youâÂÂve
  36. got two options of running and distributing your
  37. code. You can either use the launcher program,
  38. which itâÂÂs got a little play button that will allow you
  39. to start up your app once you add it to the
  40. launcher. And that requires, Google App Engine
  41. itself doesnâÂÂt ship with Python. You need to have
  42. Python installed on your machine and that seems
  43. to be where a lot of the trouble is. Google App
  44. Engine â thereâÂÂs two versions of it. One will work
  45. with Python 2.7 and one will work with Python
  46. 2.5. Nothing in this course requires 2.5 or 2.7
  47. specifically. So just get one of them working and
  48. go from there.
  49. Now once youâÂÂve got your app running locally,
  50. then you can either use the launcher to upload
  51. the app or you can use the console utility.
  52. Personally I use the console utility, you just say, I
  53. think app config update and you point it at the
  54. directory where your files are and then it churns
  55. for a little while and then you can go to your
  56. accountname.appspot.com and see your app. So
  57. if you have any specific troubles, post them in the
  58. forum. Other students have been really helpful
  59. with specific sysadmining answers and that sort
  60. of thing. So keep asking, keep working at it. This
  61. first homework is basically just get this thing
  62. online and I know that can be a pain on some of
  63. your machines. So letâÂÂs just get this thing online
  64. so we can move onward with the course. And if
  65. you want to use something else, knock yourself
  66. out, weâÂÂre not going to be able to help you but
  67. youâÂÂre free to learn and try it on your own.
  68. Okay. The next question is from Brian Y and he
  69. wants to know, what are some useful things to
  70. .know about frontend web app development?
  71. Okay, cool. So, good question, because weâÂÂre not
  72. going to be spending a whole lot of time on
  73. frontend web app development in this class. The
  74. main pieces of technology you want to know
  75. would be JavaScript and CSS. JavaScript is a
  76. separate programming language that runs in the
  77. browser and you serve JavaScript just like you
  78. would serve HTML and you can manipulate your
  79. HTML, you can manipulate CSS and that sort of
  80. stuff. Google for a JavaScript tutorial and you will
  81. have plenty of resources to learn from. And CSS,
  82. thatâÂÂs basically another type of file you would
  83. serve from your web server and that controls the
  84. styling, the colors, the font sizes, the layout of
  85. your HTML. IâÂÂll use CSS in this class and IâÂÂll
  86. provide you when we start getting into some of
  87. the more complex websites youâÂÂre going to be
  88. building like when we start doing the blog stuff, IâÂÂll
  89. point to where my CSS is so you can download
  90. that and use it if you want. But for the most part,
  91. you know, the way weâÂÂre doing the grading on all
  92. of these homeworks is weâÂÂre going to have our
  93. own piece of software thatâÂÂs basically
  94. manipulating your website and itâÂÂs really hard for
  95. us to see if your website even looks right, so the
  96. appearance of things is not something we can
  97. really grade anyway, but if you have some
  98. professional pride and want to make things look
  99. nice, JavaScript and CSS are the technologies
  100. you want to learn and you can use those on your
  101. own if you want to learn in this class, itâÂÂs not
  102. going to affect how we grade homeworks or
  103. anything like that. So, good question.
  104. Okay. Brian Y has a number of additional questions.
  105. Okay.
  106. And one of them is, is Google App Engine a good
  107. solution for large scale projects and are there any
  108. unforeseen difficulties? What costs involved with that?
  109. Sure, well there are costs, there are literal costs.
  110. Google App Engine is free at a small scale, so it
  111. will work for all of our homeworks but if you want
  112. to run it at a larger scale youâÂÂve got to pay for the
  113. bandwidth you use and how much data you store
  114. and that sort of things. I personally havenâÂÂt used
  115. App Engine in production, but udacity.com itself
  116. runs on Udacity. So many people do use it in
  117. production. ItâÂÂs a great way to get started and the
  118. things IâÂÂll be focusing on this class you can take
  119. with you outside of App Engine. I am basically
  120. going to be talking about high level concepts.
  121. ThereâÂÂs a lot of things that App Engine provides
  122. that weâÂÂll actually be building ourselves. So when
  123. we start doing user registration and cookies and
  124. that sort of stuff, weâÂÂre just going to take that from
  125. the top anyway because I want you to understand
  126. the technologies and it won't be specific to App
  127. Engine or what other framework youâÂÂd like to use.
  128. So the short answer is, yes you can use it for
  129. large scale projects. I personally donâÂÂt have a lot
  130. of experience doing that, so if youâÂÂve got more
  131. specific questions, hit up the forums.
  132. Great. Another question that Brian Y had was
  133. what kind of challenges you ran into when .
  134. developing Reddit and Hipmunk?.
  135. Okay, so thatâÂÂs actually basically what this whole
  136. course is about. So I am not going to answer that
  137. specifically here. I could perhaps do a seven-
  138. lecture series about things I learned doing Reddit
  139. and Hipmunk. But specifically Unit 7 is going to
  140. be about those types of problems. Unit 7 is how
  141. to build websites in the real world and some of
  142. the other things youâÂÂll have to think about. How to
  143. deal with like large numbers of users, customer
  144. service and all those kind of little things that we
  145. had to think about getting Reddit off the ground or
  146. getting Hipmunk off the ground. Well IâÂÂll spend a
  147. whole lot of time talking about that unit, in Unit 7,
  148. so if you hang with me until then, youâÂÂll get your answer.
  149. Okay. The next question is from I-n-sa and she
  150. wants to know how weâÂÂre going to be graded. In
  151. 101 quizzes werenâÂÂt graded, homework was and
  152. the final counted for half, I believe, and she was
  153. wondering what exactly is going to be the structure of this?
  154. Okay, sure. So in this class there isnâÂÂt going to be
  155. a final. There are going to be homeworks at the
  156. end of each unit that basically involve you getting
  157. your website online that does things. So the
  158. homeworks are the most important thing. If you
  159. can pass those homeworks you know how to
  160. build basic websites and thatâÂÂs the goal of this
  161. class. ThatâÂÂs what I want you to leave this class
  162. being able to do. So the in-lecture quizzes, those
  163. donâÂÂt count towards your grade. Those are
  164. basically to keep you engaged, to keep you
  165. paying attention and to sometimes introduce
  166. some new concepts, but those arenâÂÂt required;
  167. the homeworks are. So itâÂÂs important that you
  168. figure those out and get those online. Now you
  169. donâÂÂt actually have to have those homeworks
  170. working each week. ItâÂÂs my understanding that we
  171. can test those any time. So at the homework due
  172. date after which weâÂÂll post the solutions, but the
  173. solutions arenâÂÂt going to be â when building
  174. websites a lot of the challenge isnâÂÂt knowing what
  175. code to write, itâÂÂs how to get this thing online, how
  176. to get the pieces to fit together. So youâÂÂre still
  177. going to have to figure that out and get these
  178. things online and thatâÂÂs where your grade is going to come
  179. from.
  180. ThatâÂÂs it for Office Hours. I want to thank
  181. everybody whoâÂÂs been hanging out in the forums
  182. answering questions, itâÂÂs been really, really
  183. helpful. I know this stuff can be frustrating getting
  184. things working. Sean here will be in the forums to
  185. help. HeâÂÂs kind of my guy on the ground making
  186. sure everything is going smoothly. So if youâÂÂre
  187. stuck hang out in the forums. IâÂÂll be in IRC as well
  188. if you want to chat with me during the day and
  189. good luck with the rest of the course.
  190. Real quick, what is the IRC channel because
  191. some of our students might not know that?
  192. Yes, okay. ItâÂÂs on freenode, and I believe it is
  193. ##udacity-cs253 and there should be some
  194. information about how to get in there on the
  195. forums.
  196. Okay, great.
  197. Alright, guys. Good luck.