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What a great time it is to pick up a new hobby, passion, or career. Empirical evidence suggests that a much wider margin of people are doing just that as we speak. More people are blogging, vlogging, creating eCommerce shops, and even learning how to code. The influx of individuals interested in coding these days inspired Hostwinds' hard-working development team to offer a few words of advice for coding newbies.
The Hostwinds Dev Team is replete with talent. From the knowledgeable back-end dev crew to Hostwinds' exceedingly talented designers, this team had produced various geniuses across the board. As such, they are equipped to give you some very sound advice if you are new to software development.
Below are six tips and tricks proposed by members of the Hostwinds Development Team:
1. DevOps Developer David H:
"First off, StackOverflow is your best friend. Secondly, don't try to reinvent the wheel. If something has already been done (which it probably has), and you can implement it, do it, and then if need be, give credit to whoever made it. Technically you can license or copyright your code. Say you go on GitHub, there are many programming projects out there, and many have some standardized license with them.
Different licenses define whether or not you can implement a particular code in your project and whether or not you can monetize it. The licenses define what you are legally able to do with the code. Look into that, and try to reuse code if you can. It's a way to protect your code, so people don't steal it willy nilly.
In terms of what you know about a specific programming language, use it or lose it. If you don't use a specific language or thing to do with the programming you used to know, you'll forget it. You will need to relearn it. Furthermore, things you did in the past may not be available anymore, so you would need to learn that too."
2. Back-End Developer Matthew A:
"If you don't know something, don't be afraid to ask. The entire purpose of the site StackOverflow is to answer programming-related questions. Just be sure to search for your question first.
If you want to make a career out of programming, look up the best practices for the language you're using. This will prepare you in the event that a company either asks you about the best practices, or expects you to use them. It would be best if you also looked into what the job availability is for your language.
Projects are, in my opinion, the best way to learn and become a better developer. Setting ambitious goals will force you to learn new aspects of programming in order to complete the goal.
Learning multiple programming languages is another way to develop your skills. Doing so will strengthen your knowledge of programming fundamentals, which will help you overall with coding.
The first language is always the most difficult. Most programming languages are very similar, and they all depend on very similar functionality and logic. Once you get the syntax out of the way, the thought process behind accomplishing a task is basically the same."
3. Designer Matthew D:
"Design for scalability and accessibility. If you're building for an immovable product then you're limiting your product. Keep it simple stupid. Standards, devices, OS, and browsers change dramatically and quickly, so build a solid foundation that your application can grow from.
Write notes. Make your code legible so that poor soul that works on it next can at least have a chance."
4. Front-End Developer Nick Z:
"Do not be afraid to ask questions. Join a development community to expand your skills with other like-minded individuals. For example, going to MeetUps, Conferences, or even attending Hackathons.
Keep up to date with the latest tech news (FreeCodeCamp is a good news source), even if it is not directly related to the tools you are using (as you may find a tool that works better than what you are using). Use any available resources to help expand your skill-set (for example CodeAcademy or Udemy). Stay current with today's best practices for the libraries or languages you are using."
5. Front-End Developer Michael G:
"Keep it DRY (Don't Repeat Yourself). If you are writing code that can be used in more than one place, extract it out. Don't reinvent the wheel. There are hundreds of resources available on how something is done or libraries available for your specific purpose.
Learn to write easy-to-read and easy-to-maintain code. This will save you when you need to go back and make modifications. It will save you a lot of time by planning your code before you write it."
6. Back-End Developer Charles F:
"Make sure you understand coding standards. Keep functions simple. A function should only do one thing. There are some functions that do a lot of work, but they are still just doing one thing."
Did you notice a few members of the team gave the same advice? An Extra Emphasis Alert seems to be appropriate for those particular pieces of guidance.
That wraps up today's blog post, folks. If you, by any chance, have tips or tricks to share with the coding novice, please feel encouraged to comment below! It would be fantastic to hear from you. Until next time!
Written by Hostwinds Team / May 30, 2020