How to Start Coding and Programming | The Most Basic Tips to Help You Begin Coding and Programming Journey

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How to Start Coding and Programming | The Most Basic Tips to Begin Your Coding and Programming Journey


Technology is becoming the major area of focus in the twenty-first century.  Because of this, so many young people, especially Africans, have dedicated so much effort to meet up the current technological trends across different fields of human endeavor.


Some of the main areas in the technological world such as web development, computer programming, software development, application development, etc., require that one know computer coding.


The challenge most young people have in learning coding is that they do not even know how or where to begin their coding journey. Not knowing how to begin leads to discouragement and sometimes, confusion.


There are many blogs out there on this same subject but we want to offer you the simplest tips to understand the starting point of your coding and computer programming journey.


Basic Coding and Programming Tips for Beginners


Understand the Terms Coding and Programming


Computer Coding: This is the process of giving a computer or a computable machine a set of instructions through computer code or computer programming languages. It is the process of communicating with the computer using a set of symbols that obey a certain principle or logic.


Computer Programming: This is the process of using a sequence of computers to instruct a computer to perform a given task. Computer coding and programming are often used interchangeably but there is little difference between the two terms.


While coding may mean using the computer language to give the computer a single instruction, programming involves applying several codes to perform a specified task. You can use a single code to change the background color of a program, but you need several codes for the program to run, not only by the background factor but with the collective functions.

Why You Need to Learn Coding


Knowing how to code gives you a lot of career-wise advantages. Although your coding skill can help solve your problems, say as a blogger or SEO analyst, it can set your career path.


The career you can grab through your coding and programming skills includes web development, software application development, system analysis, software engineering, computer programming, and data analysis, among others.


The skill can also offer you part-time and freelancing jobs. There is a high demand for programmers around the world. This is because a high range of technological applications requires programming skills. Therefore, coding can earn you a living through remote jobs.


The Most Basic Tips to Begin Your Coding and Programming Journey


What you must do before learning how to code

1. Understand why you want to learn to code:

The first step you must take before you learn how to code is for you to know why you want to learn to code.


Do not learn to code because your friends know how to code and you also want to be like them. Learn to code because you want to use the skill to solve a certain problem, find a job or follow a certain career path.


Understanding your purpose will help you so much in knowing which computer language you want to begin the journey with instead of wasting time on tutorials you do not need. For instance, if your journey is to become a web developer, you need to know HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP, and sometimes, Python, Typescript, and Ruby.


2. Get enough information to begin:

After identifying your area of interest in the technological world and the computer language you want to begin your coding journey; you need to get enough information about that area of interest.


Do not just jump into starting coding. It is not a rushing game; coding needs your time. There is a lot of information on the web to help you. Understand the basic words associated with your computer programming career or whatever language you want to learn to code.


3. Get the basic tools and gadgets:


What you need to begin coding is a simple PC. It can be a desktop or a laptop. Although you can as well code with simple gadgets like MAC book, Android, and other devices, they are not commendable. This is because their screen size, processor, and typesets may interfere with your learning process.


Before buying or getting a laptop for coding and programming, you need to consider the following:


i. RAM Size: Random Access Memory (RAM) is the computer storage that makes it possible for stored data to be received and read almost instantaneously by the computer. It is a temporary story that handles data that are still in use before the data is finally left in permanent storage. This makes it easy to access as quickly as possible.


The size of the RAM determines the amount of data a computer can temporarily hold for easy access. This implies that a lower RAM size can slow down the speed of a computer because it takes much more time to retrieve data from the permanent drive than from RAM.


Your computer must have at least 8G RAM for you to begin your journey in coding and programming. Although lower RAM sizes can still be manageable at the initial stage of offline learning, it will not help in the journey along the way.


ii. The processor: The computer processor also known as the Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the brain of the computer. It controls all computation processes such as program execution and retrieval of computer instructions.


While the RAM stores the data for easy access, the CPU processes and executes the code to give the output. This means that a poor CPU means that programs will not be able to run easily.


All you need is a modern type CPU that can process your codes and programs fast and healthy. You can look out for other forms of ICU but we recommend Core i5 or Core i7.


iii. Good battery and/or dependable power source: You need power for your computer to work. Therefore, to learn to code, you need a constant power supply. It does not matter where or how you obtain it. However, buying a gadget that has a good battery can save you from a lot of disappointment.


iv. The computer screen: This may not matter for some people, but it has to be considered. The quality of the computer screen can reduce stress during the coding process. You need a screen that is large enough to avoid you from straining your eyes.


Monitor size from 15” to 24” is okay for programming but this depends on your age and the health of your eyes. If you get older, you may need a size that is over 20” to enjoy coding.


4. Internet connection:

You need an internet connection to perform a lot of things you are going to do during your learning process.


You will need internet for the following:


i. To download software and apps for the coding program.

ii. To receive online tutorials

iii. To access materials from other sources if you go blank in the course of the learning.

iii. To update and upgrade outdated applications and software.

iv. To test your codes online.


5. Download the suitable software for the program:

After you get a good gadget to start your programming journey, what you need next is to install the needed software that meets your need.


One of the major tools you need to install is the code editor. This software act like a notebook for you to write your programs before running them.


Your computer comes with Notepad. Notepad can be used to edit several computer codes irrespective of the language. Although notepad can be managed by beginners, it is not recommended for complex programming. This is because notepad does not show errors and does not have a coding assistant.


We recommend that you download and install tools like SublimeText Editor. The editor is very good to give you the interphase you need to begin the journey.


6. Enroll for the tutorial:

You have everything set to begin coding and begin your programming career. It is time for you to enroll in the program of your choice.


We advise that you begin from the very basics. If you are going for web design, for instance, begin with HTML and CSS, then JavaScript before any other language you want to add.


Starting to code from a higher-level language can be frustrating. You need the basics to understand the whole process and build a passion for the long journey that is about to begin.


There are many online platforms where you can learn coding and receive certification. However, financial challenges should not be a barrier to stopping you from learning the skill. You can go after free coding tutorials or use free online materials from websites like the w3schools.com


We recommend LearnVern or Udemy for you. They both offer coupons and free online assistants to help you begin. Once you know how to code, you can apply for paid courses for certificates.

How to Start Coding and Programming


7. Follow Coding and Programming experts:


Besides the tutorial portals, joining a community of experts in the programming field can help you a lot in learning.


 You can follow them through online forums or social media. Such people would not only give instructions that can help you. They are going to make you inspired and hopeful for the journey.


Congrats you are ready to code. Your dream to become a computer programmer, web developer, software developer, etc., is now a reality.


8. Take up tough tasks:


Begin to see what you can do by yourself. Create tasks for yourself and see if you can build a project. By so doing, you will know where you have to put more effort to perfect your skills.


You can start by building a website or blog on free platforms and trying to apply your codes for page edits. This will help you so much in knowing more than you would have known by depending on video or audio tutorials alone.


Practice makes perfect. The more you try to do it, the more you can do better.

You are there already. Just keep learning and trying new things. It is going to be a journey of fun that will drive you to the destination of your hope. Congratulations.

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