The Plot

This is the story that governs this course. The activities and concepts taught are built around this story. Below is the introduction to the story.

Our story

The Resistance Needs You

Dear human,

The world remembers that dreadful day, November 5th, 2031. Life on earth spun around as usual, some kids went to school, some adults went to work, and people posted on social media. It was just a regular shmegular day.

But then…..

WAAAAAAN!!!!!!

It was like a thousand horns bellowing all at once. The whole earth heard it, every single one of us, even the deaf. At that very moment we knew something terrifying was afoot. 

Nelson Mandela bridge

 

Giant shadows washed over the earth blocking the sun. We now call these ‘Tetris’ ships floating in the sky. Out of the dark innards an army of humanoid “Roaches” marched out with guns in hand. They scorched the earth capturing and kidnapping every person above the age of 20 and taking them into their Tetris blocks. 

The Resistance

We are no longer just kids; we are humanity’s last hope. We the resistance are going to bring down the alien roach occupation of our beloved planet and we are going to save humanity. 

One of the ‘Tetris’ is rooted in the centre of Johannesburg – connected to the fibre lines running through the city. This enabled the “Roaches” to monitor our communications and stifle our attempts to attack them and rescue our families.

Our intelligence team has come up with a new way to communicate over the network. Using this new method, the resistance groups scattered around the city will be able to coordinate strikes against the roaches.

Our survival depends on you!

You have been selected to be part of the newly assembled communications team. Your job is to encode and decode messages for the resistance. 

Using the python programming language, you will write programs that convey information between the camps.

The survival of humanity depends on you. We have faith that with you on our team we will liberate our city the planet from these Roaches.

Welcome to the team.

Skhona ‘Red eye’ Jones.

Motto: We eat Roaches for dinner

RIA recruited you:

That was a welcome message from the hero of Newtown, the leader of the resistance.

As a new recruit of the RIA (The Resistance Intelligence Arm) you will begin your training in python programming language and the visual language the resistance uses to communicate battle plans.

Pain Points – specific problems that prospective customers of your business are experiencing. In other words, you can think of pain points as problems, plain and simple.

 A User – is any person that interacts (by inputs) with a program without having to write the code directly. For example, you are the user to the code that makes your browser/website run. When you clicked on this pop-up, that was the input that made this explanation come up when the code detected it.

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All learners who are aspiring web developers will have an opportunity to build a website for a live NGO or charity client as part of their community service hours. This project will be run jointly with Community Hours – so all your time spent counts towards your LO credits. This event is suitable for learners, parents and their teachers.

TechWays will be providing the WordPress course and web dev resources for free to any learner wanting to participate. 

Besides the amazing community service you’ll be doing for a charity in need – you’ll also be building your portfolio of web dev skills. Who knows – web dev could become a side hustle for extra income?

Book your spot HERE

Indentation – In the written form of many languages, an indentation or indent is an empty space at the beginning of a line to signal the start of a new paragraph.

Text editor – is the part of the IDE where you write the code. Most text editors highlight words with different properties like functions to help you distinguish them from one another. 

Homogeneous – of the same kind; alike throughout.

Heterogeneous – diverse in character or content; containing different things

Prompt – to  cause or bring about; to make something happen. For example making someone to say or write something.

Troubleshooting is a form of problem solving, often applied to repair failed products or processes on a machine or a system. It is a logical, systematic search for the source of a problem in order to solve it, and make the product or process operational again.

String Built-in Functions/Methods

There are a lot of strings functions/methods in Python. Find full list in course manual. Here’s are some that you find useful in this course:

Functions

  • len(varName) – Returns the length of a list, string
  • join(varName) – Converts the elements of an iterable into a string.

Methods 

  • varName.capitalize() – Converts the first character to upper case.
  • varName.center(length) – Returns a centered string
  • varName.count(“?”) – Returns the number of times a specified value (?) occurs in a string (varName).
  • varName.endswith(“?”) – Returns true if the string ends with the specified value.
  • varName.find(“?”) – Searches the string for a specified value and returns the position of where it was found.
  • varName.format(placeholder = value) – Formats specified values in a string.
  • varName.index(“?”) – Searches the string for a specified value and returns the position of where it was found.
  • varName.isalnum() – Returns True if all characters in the string are alphanumeric.
  • varName.isalpha() – Returns True if all characters in the string are in the alphabet.
  • varName.isascii() – Returns True if all characters in the string are ascii characters.
  • varName.isdecimal() – Returns True if all characters in the string are decimals.
  • varName.isdigit() – Returns True if all characters in the string are digits.
  • varName.isidentifier() – Returns True if the string is an identifier.
  • varName.islower() – Returns True if all characters in the string are lower case.
  • varName.isupper() – Returns True if all characters in the string are upper case.
  • varName.isnumeric() – Returns True if all characters in the string are numeric.
  • varName.isprintable() – Returns True if all characters in the string are printable.
  • varName.isspace() – Returns True if all characters in the string are whitespaces.
  • varName.istitle() – Returns True if the string follows the rules of a title.
  • varName.ljust(value) – Returns a left justified version of the string.
  • varName.rjust() Returns a right justified version of the string.
  • varName.lower() – Converts a string into lower case.
  • varName.upper() – Converts a string into upper case.
  • varName.strip() – Returns a trimmed version of the string.
  • varName.lstrip() – Returns a left trim version of the string.
  • varName.rstrip() Returns a right trim version of the string.
  • varName.partition() – Returns a tuple where the string is parted into three parts.
  • varName.replace(“old”, “new”) – Returns a string where a specified value is replaced with a specified value.
  • varName.rfind() – Searches the string for a specified value and returns the last position of where it was found.
  • varName.rindex() – Searches the string for a specified value and returns the last position of where it was found.
  • varName.rpartition() – Returns a tuple where the string is parted into three parts.
  • varName.rsplit() – Splits the string at the specified separator, and returns a list.
  • varName.split() – Splits the string at the specified separator, and returns a list.
  • varName.splitlines() – Splits the string at line breaks and returns a list.
  • varName.startswith() – Returns true if the string starts with the specified value.
  • varName.swapcase() – Swaps cases, lower case becomes upper case and vice versa.

String Special Characters

There a number of special string characters that have different functions when used inside ” “. Here’re some useful and common ones:

  • \n – Newline – Everything after it goes to next line.
  • \t – Horizontal tab – creates a tab space, similar to when you use ‘tab’ on keyboard.
  • \b – backspace – deletes the character before the it.
  • \r – carriage return – same as \n

In programming Concatenation is a process of appending one string to another. 

\ – escape character is a string character that tell Python that the next character after it should be taken as a string and not as an instruction.

str ( ) is a built-in function that converts and sequence of characters (numbers especially) in to text. 

Mad Libs is a phrasal template word game created by Leonard Stern and Roger Price. It consists of one player prompting others for a list of words to substitute for blanks in a story before reading aloud.

type ( ) is a built-in function (still to cover what built-in functions are later) that determines the Data Type of any data presented. 

input ( ) is a built-in function (still to cover what built-in functions are later) allows a user to insert info into a program/the code. 

print ( ) is a built-in function (still to cover what built-in functions are later) that executes data inside the brackets. The results get printed out on the console/results section.

Integrated Development Environment – A digital environment used to develop games, software, hardware, that offers integration from debugging to compiling. 

Variables

More about variables

Info about variables

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#WOW – What Outstanding Work – Awards: join us to learn from our students. 

Our top 20 learners are from St Andrews for Girls, Reddam Umhlanga, Evolve Online, Nova Pioneer and Sutherland High

Learners will be presenting their final projects. Come celebrate their successes and lessons learnt with us at our TechWays #WOW Awards.

This event is suitable for learners, parents and their teachers. Book your spot HERE

To book your spot – click here

 

Calling on all high schoolers interested in tech as a career. Join us on Thursday 22 September at 5:30pm.

 

We will be sharing:

  • Some “hot button/in-demand” career pathways – including Automation
  • the skills needed to access these careers
  • some of the job realities in these careers

There are only 100 spaces – so book your spot now – please RSVP here Book

To access the recording – click here

Calling on all high schoolers interested in tech as a career to join us on 16 September at 5:30pm. If you missed it, we’ll host another one on 18 November. 

We covered the following:

  • general tech career tips
  • a few “hot button/in-demand” career pathways and jobs
  • the skills needed to access these careers
  • some of the job realities in these careers

To access the recording – click here

To book your spot – click here

We will be talking to Noelene Kinsley from GC Network. Noelene has been specialised in the exciting career of Genetic Counseling and wants to share her passion for making the world a healthier place using genetics….and data science technology. 

Let’s hear more about the trends in the health/genetics industries, where jobs are moving to and what kind of skills you’ll need in this exciting world of opportunities out there. 

This event is suitable for learners, parents and their teachers. Book your spot HERE

To book your spot – click here

We will be talking to Jason Suttie from Devson. Jason has been in the tech world since he was six years old. He headed IT innovation unit at RMB and has since left to start up his own software consulting company – solving problems and building solutions for clients around the world. 

Let’s hear more about the trends in the software and programming industries, where jobs are moving to and what kind of skills you’ll need in this exciting world of opportunities out there. 

Book your spot HERE

Linux Essentials

Introduces Linux as an operating system, the basic open source concepts and an understanding of the Linux commands. Linux is crucial for cybersecurity.

Comptia
Security+

Gives you the baseline skills you need to secure a company’s systems, software and hardware. This certificate gives practical hands-on skills to pursue a career in cyber security

Certified Ethical Hacker

Will give you skills in Information Security Threats and Attack Vectors, Attack Detection, Attack Prevention, Procedures, Methodologies and more.