Boxes used in software.

In code, eventually you get to a place where you need to move data around. To do that, you need to organize. Think about how important "moving boxes" are when you're leaving one residence for another. Yeah, you can't just have clothes and silverware thrown into the truck randomly - boxes are essential.

In software, these boxes are called data structures. Just like their cardboard analogs in the world of shipping, they all have labels. Some label data is for the humans and like the barcodes that get scanned at checkpoints, some are for the computer. The structure combined with some general agreement is what makes moving data around the internet possible.

Even if you don't know how to pack your junk-mail, glue-sticks, or used toothbrushes, you know there's a box. Sometimes, there are specialty boxes - think wardrobe boxes that allow you to pack a whole closet of hanging items. But basically, if you had to just pick one goto item, it'd be a large, cardboard box.

In the data world, there's a nice box called JSON. It's an acronym that stands for JavaScript Object Notation. 

It's not really a box. It's a wrapper of string data. One string labels and another string is the actual data. Strings in code are put in quotation marks. A label looks like this: "name" and the value like this: "Brian" To put this label and data in a wrapper, we put a colon between them and curly braces { } around them. If we have multiple pairs of label and data, we separate them with a comma. Easy. These are the boxes used to move data in software.

Here's an example:

  "name": "Brian",
  "postNumber": "1178",
  "date": "Saturday, March 20, 2021 16:13:34"

The curly braces wrap the structured content. each line is a key : value pair. If you ever hear these terms, now you have a reference for them.