Programming is all the rage today. Everyone wants to learn how to do it; the use-cases are innumerable (and are increasing) and it doesn’t hurt that it pays well. You too want to learn how to program. I’d like to help you prepare for the exciting journey ahead
Writing code, like any skill, can be taught to anyone. Anyone can be taught to speak English; there are those initial bits that most of us struggle with (why laugh is spelt that way, why love isn’t pronounced lov, why the plural of sheep isn’t sheeps-for real, it isn’t dude), but after using the language for a while, all these tiny bits become second-nature. You stop thinking about them. So the first thing about this lovely journey is…
1. Be GENTLE on yourself
Don’t think you are dumb after looking at those t-shirt-and-jeans-wearing, strange-word-using(data structure, algorithm, immutable) people. They whip-up applications in hours because they spent several hours to get there. Every single one of them. You too can get there but …
2. Don’t Take SHORTCUTS
Programming is like exercise; you can’t take a pill and become fit. You MUST break a sweat. You MUST get down and do it. You cannot become fit by watching someone else exercise. You cannot become fit by listening to someone talk about how great their workout was. You need to get gear and go exercise. You have to get down and write code.
Like exercise, the initial bits may not seem to have any impact; writing “Hello World” and such “basic” tasks may not seem beneficial but it’s upon those fundamentals that everything else is built. You will not magically become good at this. The hard work you put in though WILL eventually show. To remove barriers to your own learning, make sure you..
3. Use the RIGHT resources for YOU
Pay attention to how you learn. Just as there are love languages, I believe there are learning languages. [Mental Note: Write book about learning languages, make lots of money, go on Oprah]. Do you learn better by watching someone do something? Do you learn better by reading about why something is done a certain way? Do you learn better by seeing working code and trying to find different ways to tweak it & break it? Do fun puzzles do it better for you? Are you driven more by results than by the mechanics behind? There are tonnes of great resources [Videos, Books, Courses,etc] out there on how to write code; find a teacher who speaks to your learning language. If one’s not working, try another one. If one’s working, stick to them and grow with them.
Good resource on how we learn: Lifehacker-How We Learn
- Tutsplus I like the simple language used. No reaching for big words to teach a simple principle
- Code.org They teach you with various interactive tools
I’ll share as I come across more. What have you used though? Do share in the comments
Now that you are off on this magical journey, what does it take to be a good developer? I’ll share my thoughts in the next piece. I hope this one helped you prepare for this beautiful marathon, one I’m on myself