During the past 12 years of his coding journey, Ahsan has reflected on his time as a coder and working in tech - he’s shared with develop some of the lessons he’s learned along the way. Here are the five things he wishes he knew as a coding beginner.
Just get started and you’ll figure it out as you go
One of the mistakes that we make as beginners is we spend too much time thinking. We think about which language to start coding in, which technologies to use, and which career path to follow. Instead of spending time wondering and thinking what if, it’s better to get started with building something. Even if your first attempt fails, it’s a start, and it will motivate you to try something new. Also, there are no barriers to who can code. No matter what age, gender, or race, anyone can code and you can achieve anything you aim for!
Coding is all about problem-solving
You’re essentially trying to solve a problem by writing a piece of code. It does not have to be perfect at first. You can always reiterate and improve your code. Focus on improvement rather than perfection; seeking perfection as a beginner can hinder your learning process. So be realistic in your expectations when you start and focus on small wins before trying to achieve perfect code which takes years of practice.
Your first language won’t be your last language
Most beginners seem confused about selecting the best tools. These include the best programming language, operating system, or the best code editor. It is the one that works for you. You can’t know what works (or doesn’t work) for you if you haven’t tried it all. You can start with any set of tools and always move on to some different technologies later if there’s an alternative that works better for you. As a beginner, try to stick with one language and technology at a time - as your coding journey progresses it’s only natural for your curiosity to take over.
Practice is key
You can’t become the best coder overnight. The more you code, the better you get. It’s a lifelong learning process. Focus on project-based learning, and as you make more projects, you’ll eventually get better at coding. You don’t have to memorise all the syntax of a language. You can always use the internet for help; some of the best programmers still use Google daily. Trust me.
Improve your soft skills
During your Developer career, you’ll have to interact with other coders and team members. Even if you’re a freelancer you will need to communicate with your clients. Having good communication skills will play an important role in your growth as a Developer, so make sure you stay on top of this!
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Ahsan also shares Web Development tips and advice on his Twitter - check out his page for more.
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