Image of the names of a lot of programming languages

Don’t Learn a Million Programming Languages

Learn one, and understand the logic. At least at first.

When I first started learning programming I used to think that learning the syntax of a couple programming languages was important. Namely JavaScript and PHP. But I came to find that I knew the syntax, but I still couldn’t program. I couldn’t make anything myself. I came to realize that learning syntax is the simple part.

In your first language build things yourself. Building applications yourself will cement the logic in your mind. Start with simple apps.

After you understand the basics of the logic in your first programming language, THEN learn another language if you really want to. Though I would recommend sticking with one for a while. Then you’re really more or less just learning the syntax of the language because you already understand the logic in most programming languages. That is if you picked a common language, not an obscure one that’s different from most.

I’ve also found that sticking to one or a few things is a great confidence boost when learning whole new concepts. It gives you a chance to gain some type of mastery over things and eventually, you start to see over the top of that learning curve.

Love & Peace,

Danielle

DeeDee of Dexters Laboratory typing

Better Typing, Better Programming

One thing that I don’t see mentioned much if at all, is improving your typing ability to improve as a programmer. When I first started learning programming I typed while looking at the keyboard. And with others quite often I would see those who tend to be beginners to programming, staring at the keyboard, pressing one key at a time. Everyone does have to start somewhere. But this really slows things down and puts a lot of stress on your neck. I’ve learned that it really speeds things up, and it’s much healthier to learn to type without having to look.

I’ve worked on my typing accuracy and speed a little bit everyday and I wouldn’t even recognize myself typing the way I used anymore. It’s definitely been instrumental in letting creativity flow and focusing on the programming, instead of where the next key is on the keyboard. A great tool to use that’s inexpensive and simple is Type Fu. As of the time of this writing it’s 9.99 USD on the Mac App Store (OS X) and 4.99 USD on the Chrome Web Store (Windows, OS X, Linux, Chrome OS). I am not affiliated with them but it has helped me tremendously. And there are also lots of free resources online.

And if you’re struggling with some of the things I mentioned, I encourage you to spend a little time everyday on your typing. It doesn’t have to be a big thing. Just 10-15 minutes a day can be very effective. But it will make things so much easier for you.

Love & Peace,

Danielle