I have heard the term “just-in-time learning” before used to describe the process of learning a skill just as you need to use it, and not before. I am not sure I agree that every piece of knowledge needs to be acquired this way, but it’s certainly true that sometimes you really do need to learn something because you have an immediate need to. This is true with my latest course taken through Lynda.com called “Up and Running with Bootstrap 3“. I wanted to create a little Bootstrap site for myself, and a couple of hours invested in watching and doing the lessons of this course helped me tremendously.
As a web developer, new technologies come along all the time. And I’m constantly presented with the decision – do I just download it and teach myself, do I try to read the manual, or do I search the web for some quick-start tutorial. I searched Google for “bootstrap tutorial” and the number 1 result (the number 1 paid ad, I should say), was from Lynda.com. Since I have a subscription to that site, I saved Lynda the cost of an ad click by heading there in my browser and seeing what they have.
They have a few courses specifically on Bootstrap. I chose the newest, which also didn’t seem too long at 3 hours.
Jen does a good job keeping her energy up through the course, and it encouraged me to watch all the videos and do the lessons alongside her. Luckily, Lynda.com provides exercise files along with every video, and I quickly got into the habit of copying each video’s lesson into my working folder at the start of each video in preparation for that lesson. But I made the changes to the HTML file as she did, and got to experience working as a Bootstrap developer firsthand as the small web project came to life inside my browser.
As an aside, I actually liked working with Bootstrap through Jen’s course and will continue using it in my future projects.
The videos, as all Lynda.com videos, are well done focusing primarily on the code and the web browser. The exercise files added to the course helping me keep up from video to video and allowing the teacher to jump ahead without having to explain where this change of code came from. There’s not much that can be improved here, content wise. It delivered on the promise of getting me up and running with Bootstrap.
Perhaps the one, smallest complaint is that the technology has changed slightly since the video was recorded. The Bootstrap website is slightly different, the Respond.js website is also different, and the download instructions are a bit different. But I suppose if you cannot get around that yourself, programming with Bootstrap will also likely be a bit above your technical grasp. But I wonder if they can update the download instructions to match the latest changes to those sites.