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welschmoor
welschmoor

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My first 2 months working as a programmer

This won’t be a long and tiring post that are known to exist throughout the internet, but more of a summary of what I have learned in the first two months of my developer journey.

Before May 1st, 2022 I have never worked as a programmer, having learned the craft for 1 year I was able to find a job. Right upfront I want to mention that I do not know how easy or how hard it is to find one without a degree or working experience, all I can say is that I have found one (and possibly more, because many of my interviews went well). But this is for another story. Here I only want to depict the first two months.

What I can feel right away is that my ability to read code has improved dramatically. I can look at a thinly written code of a two thirds of a page length and instantly (a few seconds alright) know what it does. Because the code bases one works with when employed are much much bigger than what I was used to in my personal projects, and the tasks always require you to read and change that code base, it was from day one my fate to having to read code other people wrote and I can tell you, it’s not easy. It’s not easy reading someone else’s code a year after you have started out, but two months into work I can read anything just fine!

Another noticeable improvement is code quality. I used to pay no attention to duplicating small chunks of code. user.type === “registeredUser” would previously be used over and over again instead of saving it to a variable and using that variable instead, hence avoiding typos in one of the instances, reducing bugs and also the computer’s calculating time. In fact, for reasons of readability I hated doing it. Abstracting code into functions or saving it into variables decreases readability of code and readability was more important for me as a beginner. Comments by other developers with more experience were of great help to further improving my code. This is a very unique experience that you cannot get by simply doing your online courses.

These two things, the ability to read and navigate through code quickly, and the code quality is what improved dramatically.

As a downside, albeit how small and insignificant when compared to the upside of actually working, is that learning new things has now become difficult, as the time for it is just not there. So, if you’re not yet working, use all the time you have for learning new things. If you are learning, say, frontend, then learn everything you can, the whole eco system of your chosen path. On the website roadmap.sh you can see the eco system of your particular path. The website was shown to me by my employer and to my surprise I did most of the things on there.

For those interested, I can write out the entire path and all the tutorials I have taken to becoming an employable programmer in 2022.

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