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Tapajyoti Bose
Tapajyoti Bose

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25 Tips I Wish I Knew Before I Started to Code

Starting on the journey of coding can be extremely daunting. Some tips can ease your path at the beginning of the journey. Here are 25 tips I wish someone told me when I was starting out

1. You don't need a super computer to start coding

At the start of the journey, often beginners put starting off learning till they have a "good enough computer". But in actuality, it is an excuse to avoid dragging yourself to the computer/laptop and start coding.

2. Googling is the most important skill

We live in a world of information abundance. Nowadays information is cheap and often free, so gone are the days where information was the currency. Now people are more interested in hiring people who can use the information constructively.

Searching

3. A Math Nerd is not required

In movies, Computer Science is always depicted to be a subject for people with 200+ IQ with extensive Maths skills. But in reality, all you need is the knowledge of the basics operations for most niches of Computer Science.

4. Version Control is a must

Version Control is probably the most important tool for a software developer. It saves, backs up your codebase, and also enables you to collaborate with other developers.

5. Done is Better than perfect

People judge you based on what you've done, not what you plan to do. Perfect is just another term for never. Let me tell you the highly guarded secret of Mount Olympus: Every pro you meet, once started as a noob! The noob who keeps working on his craft becomes a pro over time

6. Work Hard, but Smartly

Hard Work is what gets you closer to your goal, Smart Work is what makes you complete tasks faster. Combining both, you become unstoppable.

Warning: Shameless self-promotion ahead!

A client gave me a task of converting 1.5k .svgs to .tsxs, instead of converting them manually (ETA: 30 to 50 hours), I wrote a script (took less than 2 hours) that automatically converts them.

work hard smartly

7. Tools unlock your productivity

Tools can be thought of cheat codes of life, they help you get things done faster and more efficiently. If you cannot find a tool that fits your needs, you can always build out one (Heck Yeah! perks of being a developer!).

8. One Completed Project >> 100 Incomplete Ones

As mentioned previously, people judge you based on what you've done, not what you plan to do. So put your best foot forward and have a few deployed projects, to ease up the process for the viewer, as nobody will download your code and run it.

9. Where you end up in 5 years is determined by what you do NOW

Reality is negotiable, where you are currently in life, is a direct result of what you had been doing in the past 5 - 10 years. Don't like it? Strive to change it, and in 5 - 10 years you will find yourself somewhere you are proud to be.

take action now

10. Self-taught Programmers have the best debugging skills

Self-taught Programmers lack the opportunity of having someone help out whenever they face a problem, so after 100s of trial and error, they develop a feel for efficient ways to squash a bug.

11. You don't need the right answer, just a less wrong one

People are so afraid of failing that they don't even give things a shot, not realizing that you might not be successful if you try, but you definitely won't be successful if you don't try. A failure is truly a failure, only if you don't learn from it and keep repeating the same mistakes.

failure

12. It's a Marathon, not a Sprint

The development space is constantly evolving, so prepare yourself for lifelong learning. By putting 100-hour week, you will just get tired quickly.

13. Don't reinvent the Wheel

If there is a library to solve a problem you are working on, there is no harm in utilizing it (unless you are actually trying to build a similar library).

14. Tutorials fail to teach you the most important skill

The most crucial skill problem-solving, which comes only through trial and error. Tutorials give you a highly refactored final version of the code, so you miss out on seeing the skill in action.

15. No Technology is perfect

In this world, everything has its pros and cons. So don't waste time, fighting the battle Tech X is better than Tech Y, in some niches Tech X will dominate Tech Y and vice versa.

16. A project is never complete

Learn the Pareto Principle (Law of disproportionate results). 80% of the results come from 20% of the inputs. Find out the 20% in your case and focus on those!

working on a project

17. The hype train is real, but take it with a grain of salt

New players are where the puck was, good players are where the puck is, great players are where the puck will be.

The hype around a technology tells you where the puck is heading, but always take it with a grain of salt, because new technologies have high chances of failure.

18. Learn what NOT to learn

Learning every is simply not humanely possible. First test out the waters by trying out everything, then choose the technology that resonates the best with you

19. Humility is your superpower

Cherish your achievements from inside, but be humble about them from outside. Bragging won't get you far.

20. Consistency: Secret sauce to achieve outstanding outputs with average inputs

Nobody became a pro by putting in 20 hours in a day, but a lot of people did it by putting in 1 hour for 20 days. Your brain needs time to digest the information, you feed it.

21. Open Source can help you level up

Open Source is a great way to learn by building amazing Softwares and tools. But be prepared to be constantly learning as you would be required to be constantly adapting to new technologies. It is a great way to up your game.

open source

22. The More you learn, the more you Earn

The amount of money you earn is directly proportional to the amount of knowledge you possess. Not happy with what you are making? Pick up a new skill that is in higher demand, Reality is Negotiable remember?

23. Soft Skills pay the bills

Hard Skills get you in the room, but Soft Skills get selected. People hire they enjoy interacting with.

24. Online Presence is crucial

You can offer the best product in the world, but if nobody knows about it, no one will buy from you.

Online Presence

25. Jack of all Trades Master of None...

...is still better than the Master of One (Yep, that's the complete quote). But know what's the best? Jack of all Trades, Master of One.

Wrapping Up

That's all folk! Do you have any tips to add to the list? Share them in the comments below 👇

Thanks for reading

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FAQ

These are a few commonly asked questions I get. So, I hope this FAQ section solves your issues.

  1. I am a beginner, how should I learn Front-End Web Dev?
    Look into the following articles:

    1. Front End Development Roadmap
    2. Front End Project Ideas
  2. Would you mentor me?

    Sorry, I am already under a lot of workload and would not have the time to mentor anyone.

  3. Would you like to collaborate on our site?

    As mentioned in the previous question, I am in a time crunch, so I would have to pass on such opportunities.

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