Intro to Coding for Designers

Begin a life-long practice of crafting and coding the handmade web. Learn at your own pace through creative prompts, experiments, and a counter-cultural, feminist history of art on the web.
InstructorAlexa Ann Bonomo
Self-paced online course with forever access
Beginner level; no coding experience necessary
Student community Discord
Weekly online office hours with instructor
Artwork by Lorisa Salvatin and Alexa Ann Bonomo
InstructorAlexa Ann Bonomo
Self-paced online course with forever access
Beginner level; no coding experience necessary
Student community Discord
Weekly online office hours with instructor
Artwork by Lorisa Salvatin and Alexa Ann Bonomo

Since 2021, we’ve been offering installments of Intro to Coding for Designers to dozens of our peers who have left the course with projects that show their design practice in a whole new light. For the first time ever, Index is offering a version of Intro to Coding for students to take on their own schedule, at their own pace.

Learn foundational skills in web development with HTML and CSS, while responding to creative prompts and immersing yourself in a feminist, counter-cultural history of the internet.

In 7 30–60 minute chapters along with a few creative tutorials called ‘experiments,’ you’ll learn new skills in programming and begin to use code as a creative medium. Each chapter, you’ll be guided by readings and prompted to participate in discussions in Discord about life on the internet. Play, pause, and return to course materials any time as you learn at the pace that’s right for you.

Throughout the class, students will work on a personal web zine on a topic of their choice, leaving class with a completed, interactive, browser-based project.

What sets this course apart from other coding courses is the lesson on content management systems (CMS) with Kirby. You will learn how to create a fully functional CMS to allow you to build sites for others to update the website without having to code. Perfect for team collaboration!

Get access to resources like code snippets, readings, and references from within and beyond the Index community, students will learn foundational tools for self-publishing and archiving on the internet.

Learning Outcomes

  • Learn foundational skills in HTML and CSS to build a webzine
  • A deeper understanding of the internet, its history, and possible futures
  • Learn a new skill to your design practice
  • Be able to build a fully functional content management system for collaboration with non-coders to update sites you make.
  • Play around with code with experiments in generative design and 3D photogammetry on the web


Part 1 — Introduction to the Handmade Web and HTML

An Introduction to the handmade web and HTML. Code a simple homepage site in HTML to hold all your future projects in the course.

Part 2 — Styling with CSS, Typography, and Net Art Gardens

An introduction to CSS styling, typography on the web, positioning and layout. Design and code a net art garden, where you will craft original imagery and plant them on your site.

Part 3 — Worldbuilding and Internet Poetics

An introduction of a worldbuilding approach to designing for the web Create and interactive poetry site and explore the poetics of the internet.

Part 4 — Self Publishing and Interactive Storytelling

An introduction to self publishing on the web, using GitHub via the command line, and responsive web design. Make up lore to a story of your own creation through interactive storytelling.

Part 5 — Introduction to p5.js and Interaction Design

An introduction to p5.js, a javascript library used by artists and designers for the web. Follow along with three examples that you can use to add interactivity to your websites.

Part 6 — Archiving on the Internet

An introduction to internet preservation. The creative prompt is an archive, where you will learn how to archive of your own on the web.

Part 7 — Building a Content Management System

Learn the basics of how to code a content management system (CMS) with Kirby. Update your sites using an easy to use interface that allows you to also collaborate with others!


Dive deeper into generative design and 3d on the web coding with a few experiments using HTML, CSS and Javascript.

This course is expected to total to take roughly 20 – 30 hours. You will watch video lectures, demos, experiment with code examples, complete the creative prompts with your own artwork, and participate with the Index community. The goal at the end of this class is to complete a final polished webzine that is published to the internet.

Instructor Bio

Alexa Ann Bonomo is a tech artist and scholar with a deep interest in methods in preservation and archiving with an extensive skillset in creative technology. Her creative work primarily lives on the internet and other ephemeral settings in the form of net art, creative writing and other community driven projects. She is currently crafting lore and researching motion capture for performance based art in the World Engines Lab. Alexa curates programming and teaches with Index, works on archiving and conserving new media works with Leonardo, and is an adjunct professor at University of San Francisco.

Refund Policy

We are happy to do a partial refund within 7 days of purchase if you mistakenly purchased the course and have not started watching any of the videos. Once you start watching the videos, we won’t be able to refund your purchase.

See Also