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Just getting started

jj_lowery_255e27b4b990473 profile image JJ Lowery ・1 min read

I’m just getting started as a programmer. I’ve been trying to learn for years but I struggled to wrap my head around the odd formatting of code.

I recently got really into spreadsheet formulas and saw a guy format his formulas like code, and all of a sudden, everything I had learned about coding “clicked.”

I have some ideas for apps and I’m going to build them now that I understand how this works. I’m now just trying to decide if I’m going to learn Swift (and Xcode), JavaScript, React, or Python. I’m leaning towards React since it seems simplest and fastest to get a functional app up and running without having to spend a ton of time learning Xcode or complicated syntax.

Discussion (7)

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leob profile image

Interesting that code formatting has been your biggest issue when learning programming ... on the other hand, coincidentally I also recognize the spreadsheet thing - the moment I learned that you couldn't just type in numbers and formulas, but that you could "script" stuff in order to automate things, that was just an eye opener and a ton of fun.

I think it's not a bad choice to go for JS/React - it's so mainstream these days, which gives you a lot of leverage ... Xcode is a beast, and Swift ties you into Apple as well - if you're into developing native mobile apps then why not check out Flutter? It's cross-platform so you can just target Android and iOS with the same codebase, how cool it that.

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Elliot Jackson

If it's apps you want to build then the two options from your list are Swift and React Native. My personal (biased) recommendation would be to learn Swift. I think it's an approchable and readable language for a beginner and I know I certainly benefitted from learning a statically typed language.

I'll disclaim that I haven't gone back to try React Native in a couple of years but back then at least the tooling around it took so much messing around with to get it working that it was much faster from a developer productivity standpoint to just use Swift. Your binary sizes will also be smaller and your apps will run faster.

If you start with React Native, as you build more complex apps you'll eventually be required to reach for Swift anyway to use a specific framework or to access granular controls that either haven't been exposed in a React Native library or just haven't been kept up to date.

Whatever you decide to go for, best of luck to you! It's a lot of fun!

leob profile image

I'd mention a third option: Flutter - it's powerful and it's really gaining steam.

tonycimaglia profile image
Tony Cimaglia

There's a lot of different opinions these days about whether or not you should learn JavaScript before you learn React or another front-end library / framework. I'd be interested to know how your learning experience goes learning React first. There's no way you won't learn JavaScript along the way if do start learning React. Good Luck!

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Dragomir Mihai

Hi, I'm also new to programming, I want to become an web developer. :)

epsi profile image
E.R. Nurwijayadi

Good for you

fewwy profile image

I would suggest checking out the freecodecamp tutorials on JavaScript and frontend libraries. They are pretty good