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Googling your errors as a Junior Developer

geekjs profile image Vic-Orlands ・3 min read

There is this misconception among junior developers about coding errors. When they encounter errors and bugs, they seem to get frustrated and think Oh! I'm not getting it and if this occurs more often they question themselves like "Am I sure this journey is for me" funny but yeah, you're are meant for this journey. P/S: You should know this happened to me and so many others that started this journey.
Bugs and Errors however, are painful to encounter and it proves we are not getting our desired results but be it as it may, we will always and will never run out of them but what matters is what you do when you encounter them. I think this also distinguishes juniors from senior and expert developers in the sense of what I will explain below.
When developers encounter errors, usually the senior devs know what to do about it but junior devs get easily frustrated because they don't even seem to know what the error means talk more of how to look for their solution. When I started out, I would always go back to my code from line one to make sure if I made any typo or syntax mistake-this is what we all do except that I was doing it the wrong way and trust me, this took a whole lot of time thereby adding to my frustrations.
To curb such horrible and tedious time wasted, I decided to write this article to help some junior developer out there next time he encounters errors. Below are few ways I go about mine.

  1. Read the ERRORS: As I stated earlier, I would usually go back to my code to look for my problem not even knowing what the problem is. I believe many other junior devs do so, and when they can't seem to solve it on their own they would either ask for help or close their computer.
    First things First, when errors occur there is an error message for you to know what went wrong. Even if you don't understand(we all don't at first) the jumbotron displayed there, a careful skimming would show you at least a line or word you will probably understand.
    As you go through your error lines, you will see the line in your code where they error occurred with some detailing about why it occurred. You can now easily go back to that specific line and check what you did wrong. This will save you a whole lot of time especially when you have long lines of code in your editor.
    Also, if you don't seem to know what went wrong in your code, note the word(keyword) you understood in your error display and surf the web with it. Google is designed to solve erroneous algorithms for us that if you simply type in "watchman error", be sure to get thousands of related results to watchman error and then you can surf through to find one relating to your error(P/S: There are clouds of witnesses to any error you will ever encounter in your life).

  2. Copy and Paste the ERROR: After going through your displayed errors and you still don't understand it, look for a line or couple of lines talking about the error and copy it and paste the copied error in your google search. Same as always, you will get thousands of results to your error.

  3. Ask Questions Online: One more important thing about reading your errors is it helps when you are asking for help. For instance you are having an error and you note the word watchman among the errors, you can streamline your questions better like "I am having watchman errors, any way to fix it" with some screenshots, rather than asking a generic question. I don't think I have done this before since I always seem to find someone who has done so for me but you can do so maybe if answers you see online isn't helping you situation. This is asking for help about your errors so people who have encountered and overcome such or who knows better will answer you. Below are several platforms for this purpose;

StackOverflow
Quora
Github(Github Issues)
Reddit
StackExchange and so many more.
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Knowing how to google your problems will give you an edge over your peers because while they are crying and getting frustrated about their errors, you're fixing yours and helping them fix theirs. This methods have helped me a lot and I hope it helps someone too. "Tschüss"

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