Katy Goodman On Becoming A Computer Programmer

Katy Goodman, formerly known as Vivian Girls bassist Kickball Katy, now records as La Sera. She also does other things, and right now one of those things is learning to code. Fast Company reports that Goodman is currently using her downtime to study at Santa Monica College, where she’s working toward a computer science degree. (She also has a masters in education of physics, which she got before Vivian Girls started to take off.) Goodman says that she finds coding fulfilling and that she’s looking at it as a possible career option, though she’s still making music and plans to record a new La Sera album in spring. She recently tried coding an iPhone app, a random Game Of Thrones DJ name generator, but Apple rejected it. And she’s started a blog called Katy Learns To Code. Here’s some of what she has to say about the experience.

On why she got started on all this in the first place:

This is something that will run parallel to the band. We’re working hard on La Sera stuff, but that still leaves a lot of downtime, and I find programming super-fulfilling. Getting my [associate of science degree] in computer science is a nice way to fill up my empty hours and lets me use my brain in a different way. Also, it could lead to a career in the future.

On why she didn’t study computer science when she was first in school:

Until very recently, I assumed that computer science classes would be “too hard” for me to take. But what this really boils down to is that I’m pretty scared of the unknown. Now that I’ve actually started studying this stuff, it’s not as hard as I thought it would be. I’ve read some articles that men tend to “round up” their abilities and women tend to “round down.” This tends to pop up a lot in programming because, in general, I tend to think I’m probably not as good as the people around me. But I’m slowly learning this is not the case.

And on that Game Of Thrones app:

The app I submitted to the app store was tiny and useless, but the whole process was fun. Right now, I don’t have any big personal projects, just a few online apps that don’t do much. My goal right now is to learn all the tools to build anything I want, so if the moment comes when I do have a cool idea, I can make it myself.

You can read the full article here.