Teen brothers from Nigeria taught themselves how to code and started with Codecademy
February 10, 2016 - Uncategorized
Osine and Anesi went from replicating their schools website as students
in Nigeria, to building their own browser and making a name for
themselves in the tech industry!
Osine and Anesi code because they “enjoy the thrill of creating
something new that works in the digital world.” They started their
company BluDoors, creatively inspired by
Microsofts “Window’s.” As teenagers, aged 12 and 14, they decided to
learn to code and started their coding journey with Codecademy. They
learned HTML and CSS and then moved into some more challenging languages
They decided that the best way to “really learn programming is to create
something (start a project).” They used their knowledge from Codecademy
to build projects which also aided in their learning process. They are
wise well beyond their years, and when we asked them about resiliency
towards the difficulties of learning to code, they had some great
“Difficulty is just an illusion. Everything is easy once given time.
You shouldn’t get discouraged because you didn’t get it the first or
second time. Just keep trying and you will get the hang of it.”
They also referenced one of their favorite quotes from Woody Allen: “80
percent of success is just showing up.”
Well, we’re inspired! Coding can be hard, that’s why we tried to make
Codecademy as easy as possible to help anyone become successful without
getting in the way.
Now, these young software engineers from Nigeria are building things to
fix problems for themselves and their communities. They paired their
love of computers and passion for coding, since a young age, with issues
they were experiencing in Nigeria. They “saw a problem and decided to
do something about it.” The brothers were running into issues using
Chrome, so together, they built a better browser called Crocodile
Browser! They are still
working on very ambitious projects and hope to move to America to study
at a University in the future.
We were able to ask them a few questions about their coding journey with
Codecademy and beyond.
How and why did you get started with coding?
Anesi joined the website design club at school and started learning
about the different ways to make a website. After cloning his school’s
website, he decided to get serious, started learning with Codecademy and
delved more deeply into HTML and CSS before moving on to more
traditional programming languages. Osine’s story is really similar.
Around the same time, he found HTML and CSS really interesting so he
made a few web pages before going onto other projects. We code because
we enjoy the thrill of creating something new that works in the digital
What were your goals when starting to code and how did you keep
Our main goal was to create a game . We also wanted to create something
that would be really useful in the world ( We didn’t know what that
would be at the time ). We kept ourselves motivated by taking baby steps
and working on really small projects to build up our confidence. We
continued this method of taking baby steps even when we started working
on bigger projects. We always had a goal that we were working towards
that kept us really motivated.
What was the most challenging part of learning how to code and how did
you rise above those challenges?
We found learning all the syntaxes for different languages really
difficult because we weren’t used to them. Java has been the most
difficult language that we’ve learnt thus far . We overcame most of our
challenges by simply working hard and breaking the work down into
Which resources would you recommend to folks just starting out?
We recommend Codecademy, and youtube videos . Books are also good
depending on the publisher . Stack Overflow would be useful to anyone
who already knows the basics and maybe even a beginner. We then started
creating our own projects with knowledge from Codecademy and by watching
a lot of Youtube videos and reading a lot of books. We decided that the
only way really learn programming is to create something through
projects. It can be said that we started our own projects as part of the
learning process, and we are still learning!
What advice would you have for folks who are just thinking of getting
Difficulty is just an illusion. Everything is easy once given time. This
is something we said to ourselves when it started getting difficult. You
shouldn’t get discouraged because you didn’t get it the first or second
time. Just keep trying and you will get the hang of it. And finally
remember that “80 percent of success is just showing up” — Woody Allen
How did you get to where you are now? What did you do after
We got to our current level by simply working hard on different
mini-projects. We practiced in the right way and we eventually got
better. After using Codecademy, we went on to using different online
learning resources to boost our knowledge and understanding of any
language that we wanted to learn. We still go back to Codecademy once in
awhile to learn some more languages. We also built the Android web
browser called Crocodile Browser for the phones that have low memory. It
currently has over 100,000 downloads.
Which steps would you recommend for folks who want to find jobs after
Put your personal projects on GitHub. Join communities like the
Codecademy forum community or Stack Overflow and don’t be afraid to do
something that is challenging. If you see a problem don’t wait for
someone else to fix that problem just do it and that might help you get
your dream job. We also recommend coding everyday to build up your
We are excited to follow their journey and see more from these young men
in the future.
Source: Code Academy