Getting your first steps in the programming world can be overwhelming at first. But do not worry, in this post I’ll share all the steps on learning how to code as simply as possible so you can hit the ground running!
If you don’t know me, I’m Nicolas owner of the blog and professional software engineer in LA, I have taken my first steps in the coding world all by myself, I know exactly what you are going through. Here, you won’t have to worry about becoming overwhelmed with information, I’ll lay out the blueprint for you.
By the end of this post you will know exactly what you need to get started coding!
Choosing a language
It doesn’t matter what language you use, it matters why you want to learn it.
[PUT YOUR PITCHFORKS AWAY SECOND DISCLAIMER]
[Beginners don’t worry about this paragraph:] Now I could go on and on on what makes this interpreted language (don’t worry about this term right now) way better to start with than other languages (especially the compiled ones, also don’t worry about this term), but I’m not approaching this from a technical view, WE are approaching this from the context of someone who has never coded before.
All you need to do to start coding with JS, is open your console in your browser (preferably Chrome) and start coding!
Now that we have a language, let’s get you started!
Learning to code the easy way
You will find a lot of different web tools, courses, programs, bootcamps (some now even owned by colleges), and all kinds of content on how to code. So where should you get started?
It doesn’t matter.
Here, I won’t focus on WHERE to go, we’ll focus on WHAT to learn. Then, I’ll give you some of my favorite learning resources.
The fundamentals of programming (in any language) consists of:
- Data Types (the kinds of data you will be tinkering with)
- Functions or Methods (the way in which you tinker with that data)
- Basic operators and conditionals (what happens inside the functions and methods that modifies data)
A very simple example of a program in the English language would look like this:
His name is Nicolas
I’ll go more in depth on what coding is and how to get started playing with it yourself in the next session. But for now, just have in mind that all programs are a bunch of sequences of processes (that can run out of order) and can modify data in specific ways.
Your first line of code
Nice, you made it this far through my ramblings, congratulations!
You will now write your first line of code in your browser’s console! I hope you are using Google Chrome, if you are not, try to learn how to access your console, or simple go here: https://jsbin.com/sixuwuw/edit?js,console
In the console you can write :
and after pressing enter, you should see your code ‘logging’ in the console.
Inside the parenthesis of the console log, you can enter any value you want, the value above is a string that means, it’s pretty much plain text, in the same parenthesis you can start to log different values and operations, try this next:
console.log( 3 + 6 )
You get the idea.
Where to learn coding
If you know you are serious about coding and you want a more robust resource with multiple areas of coding beyond web development (machine learning, game development, mobile development, or what have you), I’ll recommend Team Tree House they have a wide variety of courses all of them taught by professionals.
Another great resource for your studies is Udemy.com where you can select only the courses you want, but be careful, there are too many courses that become outdated and retain their ratings and reviews. That is the reason I recommend Team Tree House, they are diligent with their content.
And I’ll tell you to stay away from Lynda.com, their courses are out dated and do not take in consideration the beginner skill level, the ones I saw from Lynda. com start out far too technical, I’m sure any beginner would get confused with their courses.
The easiest way to learn how to code, is by not over complicating it. KISS (I’m not being romantic here, keep it simple stupid).