Coding has always been an integral part of the IT sector for years. In 2021, you cannot spend a single day without making use of at least one web or mobile application. Technology is everywhere around us and almost all digital platforms and applications require coding for them to be developed.
Learning how to code allows you to get a job at reputed organizations across the globe. For example, if you have mastered Java and an organization in the US is looking to hire Java developers from across the world, you can apply for the position and work from the comfort of your home. This has made coding more accessible and productive in recent times.
However, apart from companies willing to hire Java developers (or developers trained in specific languages), coding has been used for several decades and has helped humanity achieve several feats! Right from ending world war to making aircrafts fly, coding has helped individuals make path-breaking innovations and achievements that have shaped our history.
It is often believed that coding has always been limited to developing enterprise applications and programs for the corporate world. However, the scope of coding has always been huge and its applications have been highly innovative across the board.
Here are some of the most interesting real-world applications of coding you should know as a tech enthusiast:
Decoding Military Codes During World War
The use of coding can be dated as back as the second world war. A highly intelligent and capable British mathematician, Alan Turing, was asked to decipher military codes used by Germany and its allies during the second world war. This code used by the Germans was called the “Enigma” code.
In order to crack this code and decipher its messages, Alan Turing and his team of computer scientists created a machine called Bombe. This machine allowed them to reduce the human effort required to decipher codes to a great extent. This helped the authorities to make sense of the Enigma code with automation and efficiency. With the help of Alan Turing and his team’s coding skills, they were able to decipher the German codes and end the world war early.
The Landing Of Apollo 11
Another interesting and important application of coding was the building of flight software that was used for preventing the landing of Apollo 11 from being aborted. A noted computer scientist at NASA named Margaret Hamilton and her team were given the responsibility of creating the application.
The computer software was designed to pivot while an unknown problem occurred in the system. This meant that it was capable of interrupting an ongoing task for taking on a more important task on the fly. This was considered to be a significant achievement during the late 1960s as marked one of the earliest uses of computers and coding.
The Landing Of Perseverance Rover
A more contemporary and interesting application of coding is the Perseverance rover built by NASA this year. When the Perseverance rover landed on Mars this year, the world watched the event with a pleasant surprise. This is essentially because the rover landed on one of the most difficult and challenging terrains ever targeted by a Mars landing mission.
The codes written by the software engineers and developers at NASA facilitated every stage of the landing processes, right from the deploying of parachutes and choosing an ideal landing site to deploy the rover from the sky crane.
Tethys By Gitanjali Rao
Another example of contemporary application of coding is Tethys built by Gitanjali Rao, a prodigy who was named America’s Top Young Scientist at the age of 11. She invented a device called Tethys that could be used for detecting lead in drinking water. The invention was made in direct response to the Flint water crisis, making sure that people get access to clean drinking water.
Tethys is essentially a 3-D printing box whose dimensions are no different than a deck of cards. The device is equipped with a battery, Bluetooth, and carbon monotubes that are programmed to respond to the changes occurring in the electron flow when e sample of drinking water contains lead. This path-breaking invention earned Gitanjali Rao accolades like TIME’s first-ever Kid of the Year and Forbes 30 under 30.
Assessing Traffic With Traffic Lights
This is an everyday application of coding that often goes unnoticed by the common people. Many traffic lights across the world are specifically programmed to assess the flow of traffic and adapt to the same. This allows the vehicles and pedestrians to commute effectively and facilitates the smooth movement of traffic.
These signals are known as traffic-actuated signals and contain a controller unit, a detector, and signal heads that are programmed for calculating the number of vehicles and pedestrians are present at any point in time. This allows the device to time every traffic cycle effectively.
Timers In Coffee Machines
Another everyday application of coding that goes unnoticed is the timers used in coffee machines. These timers trigger a flow of actions when you set your coffee maker to start at a specific time in the morning.
These machines make use of microcontrollers and embedded systems for executing simple tasks based on low-level coding languages.
Doorbells With Facial Recognition
Doorbells with facial recognition are programmed to detect faces, matching the faces with individuals, and recognizing individuals via machine learning. These smart doorbells make use of computer programming and algorithms for determining important details about people’s faces. This information is then converted into mathematical digits compared to the database stored within the system.
The Final Word
These were some of the most interesting real-world applications of coding that have helped people create history and are used in day-to-day activities. It is important to understand the scope of coding and programming has always been significantly huge. Whenever you apply for a job as a developer, always keep in mind that your job is not merely technical. It involves an ideal balance of tech skills and creativity that have helped people save the world!