Can somebody give me advice for the start?

Hey you all,

This might be one of the most honest posts that you will ever be. This is for sure one of the most honest posts that I have ever made.

Born in ‘88 and growing up in the 90’s I started to have a intrest in computers. Like we all did. And in the later 90’s I made a html website for my class! It was about the year 1999… And me and my dad went to my uncle’s café to set up the iMacs for he’s Internet café and we had a blast. But it went wrong from that moment on. My dad had a drinking problem. And I had to live with a dad that had that problem and school was never my biggest ambition. Since that moment and the problems started at home it went bad for me at school. That and the moment I had some problems with bullies. So… at the age of 18 and failing a few times at school I quit school. Started at some adult education program, finished it… And long story short… Now Im’ a bus driver.

I’m 31 now and I want to start a career in development, I want to code. One of my best and longest friends is a coder. And he told me he doesn’t see me at the backend of the website. But because I have talent for graphic design and I know what is easy to use and why it’s easy he told me I need to me “Look for some frontend jobs, look for something like that.” And now, with 2020 at a start I want to do that. I want to be a web developer at the start of 2021. But can somebody give me some solid career advise? Ore some solid coding advice? Now I’m on Udemy and following the Colt Steele Bootcamp!

But what can I do more? What books do I need to read? Who do I need to follow on twitter, instagram? What certificate do I really need to succeed in my ambition to have a (well) payed job at the start of 2021?

please, let me know

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no reason you cant be good and front and back end. it helps to know where you want to end up but still not be married to one path. keep your laptop close and code everyday especially if you have no idea what youre doing. fumble through it. watch videos, read books, live on your editor. go at your own pace and dont rush. rushing make learning take longer. start with the FCC curriculum, when you finish that you wont be a pro but your basics will be solid

btw, im 33, i use to be a bus driver. i liked learning to drive but i hate driving routes every day so fk that. now I spend all might time coding all kinds of shit and reading docs like the bible. I took a break from finding a coding job over the last year or so but ive been coding at least half the time im awake. now i feel comfortable enough with my knowledge now and im now working on pushing out as many projects as possible while I look for work in the next few months. been coding on and off since 2014 but got really serious in the last couple years. biggest advice is if you really want to get into coding then it should be all thats on your mind at least for now. but thats just me


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Thanks alkapwn3d! Do you have any recommendations for books I can read? Your favorite book?

You are a hero :wink: Thx man! I will check the hints out and focus me on the information you have given me.

Watch Brad Traversy’s tutorials on YouTube. I like his life advice/self-help ones the most. I struggle with Imposter Syndrome like many others and it helps me to watch those. I look at articles such as this one to fuel me as well:

I’m currently an employed Software Engineer. I got kicked out of high school, got a GED. I went to a junior college, never got an associates, transferred to higher University–never finished. I studied CS and got a couple years under my belt but never did much programming beyond beginner to intermediate. This did solidify a foundation in concepts but not web dev related ones. I don’t think you learn a lot of web dev knowledge at a university, but more theory. That said, I still probably have some advantage because of this or more experience starting out.

However, I am by no means qualified to do my current job and I wasn’t qualified to do the first one I got either. I think you have to get used to that feeling and get used to always being a student.

For you, I think focusing on a front-end position will create the fastest track to gaining employment. This doesn’t mean you cannot learn back-end and transition to full-stack later. I think this is just faster and less to learn.

Do the free code camp curriculum for javascript and algorithms. Do the front end stuff. I would work on each path and do a little every day if you can. You don’t need to be a whiz at algorithms. I’m by no means one. It will help you learn the fundamental properties of the JavaScript language and you will develop a vocabulary for methods.

Learning about data structures on an elementary level is good and I think this will help you do that. i.e. knowing what an array is, how to push objects to one, delete, find the index of an element in an array, delete an element when you have the index (location within the array), etc.

One step at a time. I think doing those algorithms helps and use the hints if you have to. It isn’t about being a machine and intuiting/storing all of this information. It is about solving a similar problem enough times to be able to do it yourself later. I am constantly Googling methods in JavaScript to do really simple tasks. I don’t carry this around in my head and most people don’t. You know what you do everyday.

Sorry this reply is getting long. Focus on this:

HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and then add a framework like React. There are others but React is the most popular right now. Angular is up there too but I think if you have a good foundation of HTML/CSS/JS and then add some knowledge with a framework, you will be fine for getting the first job.

Applying is a pain in the butt and can take a long time so be patient and try to stay positive.


The best single piece of advice that I give to anyone thinking about becoming a developer/programmer is start.
There are only three things you need to become a great developer/programmer; time, grit and an internet connection. You don’t need to be rich, or even super smart. There are tons of resources, guides, tutorials, tools, examples out there, it just takes time to find them, and grit to stick with it to get the experience. You say by 2021 you want to be a web developer and that is possible, but not easy. Its not like there is only a set amount of stuff to learn, there is more new stuff to learn every day, there always will be. 1 year is just not much time to start out, learn what you don’t know, learn what you do know you need to know, find, and apply for jobs. Plus by next year there will probably some new things you need to learn. Learning and being a developer is a continual learning process.

Bootcamps are great at giving you information on what is out there, how things work, and what there is to learn, but bootcamps, tutorials, guides, etc don’t “give you experience”. You need to take what you learned from those resources and apply them yourself. You need to go out and build stuff. You will probably run into issues here and there, and have to solve then. The act of figuring out your own problems is the key experience you need to be a good developer.

There isn’t some magical checklist of things you need to become a developer. You could learn everything, but not everything is made equal, as it depends on what you plan on doing. If you plan on being a front-end web developer, then front-end skills and experience is where you should focus most of your time. HTML, CSS, and JS are all important, as are picking up one of the front-end frameworks (Angular, React, VueJS). Due to the nature of the web, all of these technologies are susceptible to change, and thus require a lot of time and devotion to keeping up with browser versions and web technologies.

There isn’t really such a thing as a certificate that gives automatically gives you a well paying job, and anything close to something like that would probably cost some big $. cough college degree cough

If your goal is to get a job, then focus your efforts on getting a job and gaining the experience and knowledge required to do that job.

Go out and look at the jobs you want to apply to and see what they require. Odds are 1 year experience isn’t enough for most jobs, but everything else isn’t “experience” based. Employers are willing to overlook less experience if you show promise in your ability to learn and do the job, so being able to “prove” you already can do the job is usually the best bet.

For example, if your applying to a front-end web job using React, and you already built multiple front-end web apps (maybe even with some basic back-end) all in 1 year of starting out, you’d impress most employers willing to look at your application. (some wont let you through due to automatic screening unfortunately)

Finally I want to point out that there is no replacement for experience. No amount of tutorials, books, bootcamps replace what you can learn by pounding your head against a problem and failing over and over. Experience is experience, and failure is the best teacher. You will get stuck and have to find help, find answers and work a problem. It might take days to figure something out, or pure trial and error, or reading article and article for help. But that is the experience that is valued and what comes in handy when you run into the issue in the future. Fail 500 times and you learn 500 new things.

Being a developer isn’t easy, its actually kinda hard, but anyone can do it. As I said at the start, you only need time, grit and an internet connection to get started, get good and get the job!

Good luck :smile:


Sorry this reply is getting long.

No it’s not! :wink: I’m reading it and I love the feedback that you give!

Really good feedback, thanks!

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Books are good for non-outdating info - like key principles, data structures, algorithms, etc. If you want to learn new tech fast better use video courses with as much practice as possible.
I agree with @alkapwn3d - you can read books by Robert Martin. Clean code and Clean coder are the ones, that leveled up my coding and inter-team communication. Knuth’s The Art of Computer Programming also very well. But the practice is key to form a new solid skill.
To improve general coding skills you may use sites like hackerrank, projecteuler, codewars. I work as a web developer and still use them to stay in shape and learn something new. If you want to have fun with code try codesignal arcade and checkio.

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I went to a bootcamp with the hopes that afterwards I’d get a job as a programmer earning a nice paycheck. I’ve been programming for about 5 years now - no job yet but I’m also not looking. I definitely feel more confident than when I went to the bootcamp years ago.

Having looked back at those years and my current years, the only thing that has kept me going is that I really like to program. I proved to myself it’s not about the job it’s about the love of programming. . You should make sure you like programming, too! You should make sure you like to create. Keep creativity as your backbone to programming and you won’t get lost in “being a programmer”.

One of the things I wished the bootcamp curriculum had more of, are short front-end challenges. Random stuff like:

  • make a red square on the DOM, make it rotate 360 degrees after you click on it.
  • Make a magazine layout with columns and photo in the mdidle with a form to fill out for a newsletter subscription.
  • Make a Wheel of Fortune wheel with dollar values on the outside of the wheel and have it spin after double clicking a button.
  • Make an outer space landscape with blinking stars, planets, shooting stars

Just make short projects up in your head. Go to CodePen and prove to yourself that you can do it. Master the instrument with short fun projects.

If you can’t think of any, go to w3schools and look for the HOW TO section. Just grab one of those projects and see if you can make it on your won. Or another variation is copy the HTML and CSS they provide. Understand it, then write your own JavaScript to make it work.

If you ever want to code together, let me know. I usually try to keep it short projects (2-3hours) and getting myself to think through the planning and logic to make something work. I keep the projects limited to HTML, CSS, JavaScript (vanilla, React or Svelte 3).

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Is there any way to contact you in private? GitHub? Linkedin?

HI Leonardo. I’ll message you.

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I’m about the same age as you. There’s a lot of great advice on here, so I’ll add my own testimony. The reality of self-teaching is you take it on yourself to decide what ways and methods of learning and materials are going to work for you. There is no easy way to do this. I agree with others that grit, determination, persistence are your main weapons against drowning in a sea of tutorials, blogs, and classes. The sooner you start trying things out, the sooner you will know.

Pick one thing to start learning–it should be a langauge. It doesn’t really matter which language you choose at the beginning. Eventually, you will realize that there’s very little that’s different between programming languages, and you will eventually have your hand in half a dozen or more to get things done. The best way to translate other into other languages is recognizing and learning programming patterns. General programming languages all have dictionaries, lists, variables, floats, integers, and so on. All databases languages speak more or less the same. You can’t appreciate the differences until you pick one to struggle with. And I stress the struggle part–you must embrace the difficulty, because that’s when you will learn the most. And it will take time, lots of time. I know people who can get jobs in under a year, but I didn’t, and still haven’t, and I’m already talking to companies that want me to send a resume. If you find you can’t stand doing what you’re doing in programming anymore, then move on to a different topic in the universe until you find something that keeps your motivation up.

You must learn the art of asking good questions. This is more important than your coding skills. Asking good questions first comes after you struggle making something work. Take lots of notes and know how to reduce them to the essential information that people need to know.

One of my weaknesses that has slowed me down is good notes and developing a system for retaining knowledge. I disagree with some people on here that you should avoid memorizing things you can look up–what if you’re in situation, like an interview, where you can’t google something? What you know in your head will speed up your progress. If you’re constantly looking up the same things–then you need to process that knowledge in a way that can be recalled from you directly.

Success is a ladder of failure. And you will build it rung by rung. Good luck to you.

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