On the last post I have written some tips for those who are starting in the world of programming, but today I want to talk something that happened to me before, and is happening to me now: There is just too much information on the internet! You will say that this is an obvious observation, but when you want to study something, this is just overwhelming!
If you are like me, you will try some tutorial, think that you are not learning as much as you want, and give up… until you bump into the next “perfect tutorial” that will teach everything you want to know. I am reading a lot, trying to absorb the maximum information I can, and I will write here some of the best things I saw (and learned) so far on this journey:
The first thing is to define one (and only one) language to study. There are some basic concepts on every language that I was able to understand such as variables, types of data, conditionals, loops, etc. If you don’t know any of these, start with this. Even if you feel tempted to learn 3 languages simultaneously, don’t. It is just frustrating
If you have no idea where to begin, I strongly suggest Python because it is easy (and I personally love it). If you already have a future idea to implement, search which language best fits your interests. The choice of language is like music: subjective and every one prefers a kind of. If you are curious, this site show how to print a simple “Hello, World” on 300 programming languages. You will have an idea of the languages difficulty.
One of the best classes I watched when I just started was this class, which gives you an idea of computer science, debbuging, etc. The course has notes, videos and tests. Maybe it won’t teach how to write a loop as a regular tutorial, but don’t misjudge the power of basic knowledge. Programming goes beyond the writing.
Avoid short cuts! There is no such thing as learning from night to day. If you have doubts about this, you should read this awesome post from Peter Novig. As said by Samuel Johnson (1709–1784): “Excellence in any department can be attained only by the labor of a lifetime; it is not to be purchased at a lesser price.”
When I decided to go to the web development, I found this awesome post which guided me on a lot of topics that I should learn.
You just MUST learn git. This is fundamental. If you have no idea what it is, you need to search about it today. Lots of great projects are open on GitHub for you to look at the code and contribute. When you start your own project, put it on your repository and share it with your friends. Sharing is the best way to learn. Always. If you speak Portuguese, I recommend you this text.
Help someone. You may know little, but there is always someone that is eager to learn, and if you can, you should help them. When you teach something difficult in an easy way to someone that doesn’t know the topic, that’s when you really know it.
Hope you liked it! Also, feel free to share with me if you find any interesting!