JavaScript30: Wes Bos’ fantastic FREE course on building great JavaScript apps without all those frameworks

JavaScript programming these days is quite often ridiculous. Too many projects that are the equivalent of building toolsheds by bringing in the US Army Corps of Engineers. They could’ve been done simply with JavaScript (and maybe a little jQuery for convenience’s sake), but they have a clown car’s worth of frameworks bolted on.

Wes Bos’ answer to this problem is JavaScript30, a free-as-in-beer 30-day course in which he walks you through building 30 JavaScript applications in 30 days using only JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and a browser and editor. No compilers, libraries, frameworks, or boilerplate involved!


If you haven’t read it yet, go ahead and check out Jose Aguinaga’s article, How it feels to learn JavaScript in 2016. It’s a tour of the mess of tools, frameworks, and even various dialects of JavaScript that get bolted on to a lot of web front-end projects these days. While it takes things to an extreme, it’s an extreme that many projects approach.

I’ve met too many developers who can no longer make even the simplest of JavaScript apps without reaching for one (or more) of these add-ons. There’s nothing wrong with React, Redux, Angular, VueJS, RxJS, WebPack, and all that other stuff in the clown car (hey, I’ve done presentations on React myself) — when they’re well and truly needed. It’s just that they’re not needed for many projects, and often just add to their bloat.

Enter Wes Bos and JavaScript30. His approach is simple: re-learn the basics by doing, doing often, and doing by using the ES6 flavor of JavaScript, which modern browsers support. I’ll let Wes pitch it to you himself:

Over 30 days, he’ll walk you through 30 applications, each one coded using only the basic HTML5 building blocks: HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Some of these applications answer the question “How do I get this UX effect without frameworks?”, such as a JavaScript drum kit, a CSS/JS clock, an image gallery, detecting the when the user has typed the Konami code, an HTML5 video player, and even a Whack-a-Mole game. Other applications are exercises for learning the basics, such as mastering arrays, objects, events, and local storage.

As I mentioned earlier, you can sign up for JavaScript30 free of charge. Signing up gives you access to this video-based course (with downloadable files), which you can take at your own pace, any time. My guess is that Wes is using this course as advertising for his other paid courses, but those courses are well worth considering. Wes knows his stuff, he’s a solid instructor, and he’s one of those people who goes the extra mile to make sure that his material is interesting and entertaining.

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