Codecademy teaches aspiring coders to use APIs with YouTube, SoundCloud, NPR

Gigaom

Starting today, wannabe programmers on Codecademy will get to do more than just fiddle around with code in a vacuum. They’ll be able to plug into the APIs of several popular websites and services to build apps around YouTube (s GOOG) videos, NPR newscasts, congressional records and more.

With ten partners, including YouTube, NPR, Soundcloud, Bit.ly and the Sunlight Foundation, Codecademy is launching a new track of lessons on using APIs to help students create projects and website that have real-world, concrete applications. Through APIs (application programming interfaces), developers are able to communicate with applications from other sites and services — Codecademy’s goal is that by enabling students to build with APIs, they’ll more easily realize the power of programming.

“This gets you from not knowing anything to building something that feels pretty substantial,” said co-founder Zack Sims.

The new track follows the recent launch of Codecademy Projects — a…

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