Oct 252012
 
 October 25, 2012  Posted by at 11:31 pm Not So Stupid Questions  Add comments

[To celebrate my first year of programming I will ask a ‘stupid’ questions daily on my blog for a year, to make sure I learn at least 365 new things during my second year as a developer]

One piece of advice to 1’st year devs

One piece of advice to 1’st year devs

Here is the summary of all the great answers I got within a 24 h 🙂 I have sent the result to the students I did the session for, and I have to say,- they really needed this. They were so extremely happy to hear that there are so many devs out there that want them to do well,- the students were on their second month programming and feeling quite low. I could see how their spirits were raised as they realized how much all of you care. In a few years, and maybe even earlier, we will meet these devas at UG, conferences, at work, at a party- and we will so happy for the knowledge they can share with us and we will be happy that we encouraged them. I learned a lot just talking to the students, one day or two months or 20 years, there is always so much to learn. I never stop being amazed at how wonderful people are and how much there is to learn! #MakesMeHappy

Tracy Cells has written a similar blog post a month ago, with some great advice to new developers! Please have a read there as well, it is really great advice!

And I really want to share the advice Uncle Bob gave to me when I asked him at NDC, he told me:

1. Never be afraid to ask or seek out help – this is not the type of work you should be doing alone (done! doing!)
2. Learn to write tests, and use them (working on it 😉 )

Please add more advice as comments or on twitter, I’ll update the PDF and the blog post!

Download all the advice as a PDF here, and put it on your fridge! One piece of advice to 1’st year devs

Put me on the fridge: One piece of advice to 1’st year devs
Iris Classon
Whatever you do, don’t panic!!

Omar Gonzales
This sounds silly, but you should learn how to read documentation for the language you’re learning. Programmers are in a constant state of learning the latest and greatest updates to the technologies that they have to employ to perform the work they must do every day. We spend more time reading code than writing code, as well as reading documentation for different libraries. Becoming familiar with language reference documentation will help you to find your way around a language and its API library. The sooner you become intimately familiar with the documentation and how to read it the easier it will be to learn new and different parts of your chosen language. But most of all, be patient in the process, it gets much easier with time and experience.

Dan Wahlin
Things often seem harder than they really are. I’ve been in this business for 15+ years now and still get intimidated from time to time by some new technologies. In nearly every case things always seemed harder than they really are though. After a little practice I almost always look back and wonder why I felt intimidated at all by a given technology.

Tormond Haugen
Making mistakes and not understanding means you are learning something new. Don’t be sad or ashamed of the fact that you are learning. If you share your mistakes that will probably help someone else avoid them, and probably help them help you see ways to solve it. I hope you are still making mistakes, and correcting them, in one, five and ten more years
Eimantas
If you think that after the first year in development you are not “new to the programming world” you have another thing coming. My advice would be – don’t choose the easy way. Look for the right one.

Dan Wahlin
Things often seem harder than they really are. I’ve been in this business for 15+ years now and still get intimidated from time to time by some new technologies. In nearly every case things always seemed harder than they really are though. After a little practice I almost always look back and wonder why I felt intimidated at all by a given technology.

Justin Yorke
Not necessarily encouraging pieces of advice, but 2 things I wish I’d learned in school: Software engineering is much more than just programming.Software engineering is both easier and harder than you think it is. One of the hardest parts is recognizing the difference between the two.
Joakim “Kimmen” Rosendahl – Studied Computer Science, working as a .net consultant in Stockholm.
Take your time and understand the basics, it will pay off in the long run. Know the difference between common data structures and algorithms. Frameworks is a “flavor of the month”-kind of thing. Learn, unlearn and relearn, don’t be a zealot =D. If you really into programming, try learning a new language each year

Andreas Paulsson
Never be afraid to ask!

James Curran
The top advise I’ve been giving starting developers for the past 20 years: Learn how to type. The greatest crimes in programming are committed by those trying to save a couple keystrokes
Vladimir Marionkovic
If you don’t understand something, ask questions!
There is always someone who knows the answer. Don’t see that as a failure, but as an opportunity. And keep in mind that all of them were also in your shoes once upon a time.

Anders Holmström
Don’t get locked into thinking a single programming language is the answer to everything. Don’t become a zealot. Be open-minded and don’t listen to anyone who tells you that language X is better than language Y..

David Corbett
My advice
Don’t forget you will also be working with people: Learning from them, teaching them, working with them, working for them, taking instructions, communicating, working in teams, motivating others and being motivated by others, occasionally getting annoyed by some and also getting enthused by some.

So, try to develop your people skills as well as the technical ones – they are just as important and maybe even more so.Anders Holmström
Don’t get locked into thinking a single programming language is the answer to everything. Don’t become a zealot. Be open-minded and don’t listen to anyone who tells you that language X is better than language Y..

Jon Friese
I’m new to developing but after university (all in Java). I’d say learn the fundamentals, not the syntax. Learn concepts meaning, and how they work, don’t worry about the language, once you have the concepts down, you can pick up most languages!

And always to become proficient in a specific language you need to code in that language!

Mike Wills
Use StackOverflow! Don’t just ask questions on there, but take the time to research and answer questions. You learn a lot more that way. Plus you have built-in feedback!Anders Holmström
Don’t get locked into thinking a single programming language is the answer to everything. Don’t become a zealot. Be open-minded and don’t listen to anyone who tells you that language X is better than language Y..

Oblov
Remember that you’re not really coding for the computer. You’re coding for the next person who has to maintain the code. This could be you next month or someone else entirely next year. So code, just like human language, has to be comprehensible. As with spoken or written English, it’s easy to vomit reams of poorly organized thought. Simple, easily understood language takes hard work. But if you ever have to look at that code again, you’ll thank yourself later.Anders Holmström
Don’t get locked into thinking a single programming language is the answer to everything. Don’t become a zealot. Be open-minded and don’t listen to anyone who tells you that language X is better than language Y..

@clemenssv
Write code, code, code and try stuff out. Programming gives you power over the machine. Make it obey. Every circuit

@psnively
Reject the false dichotomy between theory & practice. Constantly ask why your tools are the way they are. Learn CS history.

@JanneMercy
Just code and code and code =)

@blowdart
When you no longer feel the desire to learn new things you’re done. Find another job.

@awalonblue
Control performance, even if it seems inefficient. Everything of human utility is real-time.

@kcstreet
If Hello World hits screen & ur happy 2be done, go find your real passion. If instead, u long 2 learn what is next, keep going.

@PeterDrougge
Never be afraid to ask questions

  5 Responses to “Stupid Question 67: What was the advice given to first year developers?”

  1. 1. practicing things in isolation (and writing the tests first) gives you the skills needed for getting things done.
    2. all languages were not made equal: Lisp & smalltalk are more powerful than most others. C/C++ is overrated
    3. The original masters knew what they were doing.
    3.a. So do the SICP course – it will knock 5 – 10 years off your time to learn your skills.
    3.b Heed ‘Clean Coder’ & cover the classic books / courses … 1 at a time.

  2. Read at least one programming book completely!

  3. […] Stupid Question 67: What was the advice given to first year developers? (Iris Classon) […]

  4. There’s a neat Quora Post about this as well.
    http://qr.ae/8LXVa

    My answer is here:
    http://qr.ae/8LXJq

  5. You have Dan Wahlin listed twice

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