Coding Can Find Answers To Many Pressing Questions | Laissez-Passer

  • Coding Can Find Answers To Many Pressing Questions

    The effects of recent events in our society such as the covid-19 pandemic and climate change are much larger and more complex. It is understandable that in the face of this situation, frustration and hopelessness are widespread. But there are answers and solutions. This is what Alpha Coding and other tech companies believe in. The tech industry and the people behind it can help find it.

    Coding in Small Steps, Results in Big Differences

    The steps are not always obvious. For example, Danny van Kooten, a Dutch developer, is among the person behind the plugin Mailchimp for WordPress. He recently revised it and streamlined the code. Around 20KB, a very small amount of data, but it does matter because the plugin is activated on a good two million websites. This coding, as a result, saves CO2 which is equivalent to several flights to and from New York to Amsterdam.

    The anecdote shows the importance of sustainable programming. The grid uses huge amounts of energy. So it pays to keep the code of websites and apps lean. The energy saved in data transfer is enormous. Our CO2 balance can be reduced through efficient programming alone. This requires good programmers who can search through the code for unnecessary ballast and who can consciously develop programs accordingly.

    But coding can do more to find answers to the pressing questions of our time. And there are many people who provide the skills and time to look for it. The network at Hackerthons and write software together that solves specific problems or, through better data processing, makes it possible to identify deeper problems in the first place. Because it’s not just important how well something is programmed. But above all for what.

    Coding in Action

    At the Climathon, for example, people all over the world work together on digital ideas for climate protection. At an event in Sweden, the developers were looking for solutions to reduce plastic pollution, for example through new ways of separating waste or innovative product design. In February, Welthungerhilfe looked for a Hackerthon for solutions for more modern fundraising and better global networking of its employees. And the Guardian Project develops open-source software and devices to enable activists, journalists, or NGOs, for example, to communicate securely where it is otherwise dangerous or impossible. Teams from the 42 network are also active: They are working on the development of an AI that will analyze and sort all available scientific data on Covid19 and facilitate access to it.

    Projects like this not only help the planet and fellow human beings. They also offer opportunities to work in very diverse teams on a common goal and thus strengthen your own soft skills. By the way, in the end, there is the realization that different realities, living conditions, and perspectives necessarily lead to better applications. Last but not least, they sharpen the understanding of one’s own responsibility and the consequences of one’s own actions.

    Often the image of the butterfly is sought, the wing flapping of which causes a tornado. Less pathetic and related to our everyday life and our work can be said: Small details can make a big difference. Good code also makes a big difference. Not just in terms of powerful applications and a good user experience. But as an important contribution from our industry to a better future.

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