Software Development

Trying to Become a Better Programmer? Consider These Great Tips For Success!

Modern businesses will spend over $4 trillion in the coming year on technology. Many of these technology investments will center around the development of custom software or applications. When in need of these customized tools, a business owner will have to find a competent and experienced programmer to help them out.

If you are a computer programmer, you know all too well how important honing your skills is. Making sure you find and fix any problems you may have in your approach to coding is vital. Read below to find out more about how to become a better programmer.

Lose Your Desire to Write Code at Breakneck Speed

One of the biggest misconceptions new programmers have is that the faster they can write code, the more desirable they will be in their industry. In reality, speed has absolutely nothing to do with how desirable a programmer is. The faster you try to write a new code, the higher the probability becomes of mistakes being made.

Rather than speeding through this process, take your time to ensure all is well with the new code. While you can discover and fix issues with the help of one of log analysis tools, later on, you can avoid problems altogether by just taking your time.

Get Difficult Tasks Out of the Way First

Before you begin writing code for a new piece of software or app, you need to layout a game plan. With plan will provide you with a roadmap to your ultimate goal, which makes the coding process easier and more organized. Once you get done devising your plan of attack, you will probably notice a few tasks that are more difficult than others.

Instead of putting these difficult tasks off, you need to try and tackle them first. While you may dread taking on these harder aspects of the coding process, you will be thankful you got them out of the way immediately. Once you have all of these challenging tasks knocked out, you can get through the rest of the project with ease.

Don’t Forget to Work on Your Soft Skills

The biggest misconception most new programmers have is that all they have to do to be successful in this industry is to learn popular programming languages. While this knowledge will help with your overall success, more is needed to rise to the top of your industry. Having soft skills, like likability, charisma and the ability to communicate with other programmers is vital. 

One of the main things a potential employer will want to know from a programmer is how well they work with others. Ignoring the need to hone your soft skills can make it difficult to land your dream job. 

Learn a Number of Different Programming Languages

Making yourself attractive to business owners should be one of your main concerns. Focusing on learning and perfecting one programming language can come back to haunt you in the long run. Only being proficient in one programming language can make you look like a “one trick pony”. 

Learning a handful of the most popular programming languages on the market is one of the best decisions you can make. Instead of trying to overload your brain by trying to learn more than one language at a time, pace yourself. Getting familiar with one programming language before you move onto another is vital. The time and effort you invest in learning all of these programming languages will be worth it in the long run. 

Luckily, there are a number of programs online that will allow you to learn these skills and then put them to the test. Getting familiar with the power of online learning is vital. In order to have success with online learning, you need to be a self-starter. 

Hey, Jeremy here! If you want take a look at some interesting programming languages, I’ve been building up quite a collection here.

Test Your Code Frequently

Some programmers get so wrapped up in writing a large amount of code that they forget some basic procedures. One of these procedures is testing the code to ensure it is error-free. If you are writing a vast amount of code, you need to make sure there are no glitches that need to be ironed out before moving on.

The longer you wait to test the code you write, the harder it will be for you to find out where bugs exist. When choosing an integrated development environment, be sure to pick an option that allows you to detect typos right away. With this type of environment, you can catch mistakes right away and fix them before any real problems occur.

Having the Right Tools Makes a Big Difference

The main thing you need to do when first starting your career as a computer programmer is to find and invest in the right tools. One of the main things you need to focus on as a new programmer is retaining information. While the human brain can hold a lot of information, you still need to take notes. 

Programs like Evernote provide you with the ability to take notes about keyboard shortcuts, best practices to follow and even software requirements. You will also need to become familiar with the plethora of programming forums and code libraries on the market. Popular programming languages like Java and Python have large online communities and tons of libraries. 

These libraries come in handy when you are trying to avoid writing every part of a new program from the ground-up. The more you use these online resources, the easier it will be to become a great programmer. 

Seek Out the Help of a Mentor

If you are new to the world of programming, reaching out to a mentor for help is a good idea. Working with an experienced programmer can help you learn some great tips and avoid common mistakes. Before you start working with a mentor, you need to realize that they will probably offer up constructive criticism. Instead of taking this personally, you need to listen to the information they are providing and learn from it. 

Published on Java Code Geeks with permission by Jeremy Grifski, partner at our JCG program. See the original article here: Trying to Become a Better Programmer? Consider These Great Tips For Success!

Opinions expressed by Java Code Geeks contributors are their own.

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Jeremy Grifski

Jeremy is the founder of The Renegade Coder, a software curriculum website launched in 2017. In addition, he is a PhD student with an interest in education and data visualization.
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