Broad question: What are the purposes of coding challenges?

Tl:Dr == I am struggling to solve the Computer Science career path unit 3 coding challenges for working with python lists. And I want to know if Its ok to move on, I am a total beginner usually interested in using consumer electronic technologies. And have difficulty in math.

I just started the Computer science career path in here, and so far I was breezing through first 3 sections. Until I reached “Unit 3” and Working with lists in python. I did mostly ok in the lesson, and the quiz was easy. Until I hit. the coding challenges of that section, the first was a bear and try as I might I could not figure out. In my mind I kinda had an idea about where to take my solution, but I could not vocalize it into python. My biggest problem was that the first problem for Challenge 1 asked me to use the append() function. But I didn’t realize from the lesson that I could do operations with the lists as the lesson seemed to suggest that .append() deal with only single entries. I eventually decided to look at the solution. And reading it made sense, and it kinda followed the general idea I had in my head.

The next problem I tried, my solution was not accepted by the system. I decided to write and test the function on VIM text editor. And I’ve not had as much luck with the others. I just want to move on. So what is the purposes of the challenges? To help teach problem solving skills? I am just starting this as a non technical computer usage. Basically my knowledge of computer skills was based on consumption. I tried working the other problems. But Idk, maybe programming is not for me. I still want to learn the syntax and learn python.

So if I am unable to reach a solution will I be hampered by being unable to think through the solutions? And moving on from those problems? I am admittedly worried that these challenges proved difficult to solve. I did the Hanoi towers on paper, and found the solution so I haven’t yet lost hope. All I want to know is if the coding challenges prove difficult and I can’t find a solution will it bite me in the rear end later down the road. I am taking this program as an intro to computer science to see if I like it and I can think In terms of a programmer. If I can’t I will drop it. I am interesting in creating consumer, entertainment software for mobile and pc. And am I not that much into data analysis beyond the creation of simple databases. So yea, any thoughts.

Hello and welcome to the forums @lionsolano92!!

It’s certainly possible to go without the projects…

I don’t have pro so I don’t have access to them, but I also come up with my own projects to challenge myself with.

I think if you have the ability to do them you might as well try, but I wouldn’t force myself to do them. You could always continue your lessons, get a better understanding of the program, and then come back later.

I would not try to learn something you don’t desire to learn, it usually won’t work out well…

Like I said it may be helpful to do your own projects, so you can work at your own difficulty and gradually build your way up. If you wanna do gaming, and entertainment software I would find a game engine like Panda3D, which runs is coded with Python, and to some practice with that.

Try your best, be paitent, and don’t lose hope :grinning:


Challenges are like biking without training wheels. Once you know the basics of a topic, you can try to use them without a step by step recipe like it happens with tutorials.

You can decide if you do the challenges or not. But I’d like to tell you a couple of things from my experience:

  1. What you are going through during these challenges seems completely normal. You get frustrated.

  2. Challenges are rewarding. If you make them, I am pretty sure you will feel more confident about the topic.