TopCoder

I have recently begun to do code challenges from TopCoder.

I first heard of TopCoder from John Sonmez here: So You Want to Become a Better Programmer? (TopCoder).

I started by doing the archived problems here. The problems are sorted by the percent of competitors who were able to solve them–basically in order of difficulty.

The questions can be fun but a few of them are impossible for me to understand and the interface requires a very large monitor for me to see everything. But overall it has benefited me because I get to attempt to understand a requirement, pass tests, then look at successful and cleanly written code from past competitors.

 

Find Recipes

Find Recipes

Enter an ingredient and get recipes and nutritional information instantly. This was made using the Edamam’s Recipe Search and Diet API which provides access to over 1.5 million recipes from over 500 sites.

This was my second time using an API. I learned much from Apps from scratch. This time was different because I kept getting an error messages until I realized that I had to use JSONP instead of JSON. I also had to use a callback function to prevent errors.

Weather Now

Weather Now

Enter a city and find out its current temperature. This was made using the Open Weather Map API (Application Programming Interface) which provided data in the JSON format.

Special thanks to bloggers Omar for helping me get started with this API and Prashanth for helping me make sense of the JSON.

I feel great about getting started with this API. I feel like I have cracked open the door to the wide world of APIs, and I am excited about the future of learning, playing, and exploring even more…