Over spring break I taught myself Django/Python and created a full web app: BrainTrust (currently offline)

The site isn't pretty, and has fewer features than I'd like, but it works and includes:

  • User Accounts and Registration
  • Ideas stored in a MySQL database
  • Open Comments
  • Twitter API Integration
  • Bit.ly API Integration

The last two were pretty unnecessary...

Learning Django

After learning Java over winter break (earlier post), I quickly picked up Python using Dive into Python.  I was able to get my Python abilities to 90% of my Java ability in about two days.  I credit Mehran Sahami for teaching computer science so clearly.

The next step was to learn Django.  Django is a framework for Python analagous to Rails (Ruby) or Drupal (PHP).  Avoid the official tutorial... I spun my wheels on it for a while before switching to Django Book which was way clearer.

I followed the first half of the Django Book tutorial exactly (up until the advanced topics), then I started building BrainTrust following the same steps.  The advanced chapters were useful as I strayed from the tutorial example.

I built the entire app over the course of a week (~5 hours a day); it felt great to see it up and working.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out...