HTML and CSS is not programming?!

I haven’t been on top of social media lately, so I have no clue who started this.
Yesterday, a lot of people were in a rage because of somebody proclaiming again, “HTML and CSS are not programming languages!”
All I can usually muster up about comments like that is a 😒 face and then carry on with my business. Though, yesterday it was different. I wasn’t just unamused; it had me upset and frustrated, like so many others.
Let me walk you through it.

When somebody says, “HTML and CSS are not programming languages,” I see this as a multi-level problem to discuss. For one, it discourages a lot of newcomers from continuing their journey in IT. I’m currently working with a lot of beginners and see it first hand how challenging it can be to get started in IT and programming, even without other people’s opinions. Random tech dudes discouraging newcomers online is not an option (yes, it’s mostly dudes).

On the other hand, we waste a lot of time discussing these matters. It’s not worth the fight.
We spend hours and hours to debate, trying to win pointless arguments. Let’s say you’d win that argument that “HTML and CSS are not programming languages,” what then?
Your ego would benefit from that, for sure. But that’s about it. Everybody else would still go about their business, using HTML and CSS to create great websites and provide value to others. And that’s the thing: Most of us learned how to program initially to create value for others. That’s why we sit down every day, learn, and practice.

Right now, because of COVID-19, we’re in unprecedented times. Our everyday lives are impacted on an enormous scale. But also, we see that a lot of companies are going bust right now. Does it hit the right companies? I don’t know, and that’s also not what I want to debate.
But it had me thinking: Why would I start a company in the first place? It’s not to become a millionaire. To effect change? You bet!
Right now, my focus is all in on education and how we learn. When I think back to my school time, I’m revisiting a lot of unpleasant memories. In those times, “learning” definitely had a negative connotation. It wasn’t fun, rather a necessity and something that had to happen quickly, paired with a lot of pressure.
But what if it was the exact opposite? What if we got rid of old ways and mindsets of learning and rethink everything? There must be better ways to learn and achieve results.
That’s what’s keeping me occupied right now. Here in the US, we have a lot of people out of a job right now. The other day, when I scheduled my next programming class with the local library, the coordinator told me that she’d appreciate if I was to do more tech classes to provide perspective for those that are currently looking for their next job. For them, learning HTML and CSS basics might be the stepping stone they’ve been looking for. And they don’t care if some tech dude proclaims if “HTML and CSS are programming languages or not.” They want to provide for their families and get their first job in Tech.

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