Without good software, computers are like dumb machines. “There are about 18.2 million software developers worldwide, a number that is due to rise to 26.4 million by 2019, a 45% increase”, says Evans Data Corp in its latest Global Developer Population and Demographic Study. In this article, you will get an insight into what is coding for beginners and why you should care.
Coding for Beginners
Fundamentals of coding
To prepare food, we need a recipe. A recipe is a set of instructions which tell you how a specific food is to be prepared. Similarly, software or application coding is a set of instructions given to the computer to execute. Codes are not only used in computers but in many other electronic devices such as cell phones, cars, microwaves, refrigerators and so on. A good recipe results in a tasty dish, similarly a good structured, optimized well-written code results in an effective functional output.
Why is coding important for you?
Computers run on binary code written in 1s and 0s which is difficult for humans to interpret and write. There are a variety of coding languages which translate the instructions into binary code for the computer to understand. When you learn to code, you develop skills and experience to solve business application problems, improve your critical thinking and creativity which helps you progress as a software developer.
Various levels of Programming Language
There are two types of languages:
- Low-Level languages: They closely resemble binary code and are difficult to learn and write. Example, Assembly is a low-level language. C and C++ are middle-level languages.
You can write operating systems, internet browsers, database systems, image/video/sound processing software in these languages.
- High-Level Languages: They are easy to code and learn. Most of the popular high-level languages used today are Java, PERL, and Python, etc.
Coding languages usually share similar features. The text file written in a particular language is called a ‘program’.
Now that you have learned the basics of what coding is, and how important it is, you might want to decide on which coding languages to build expertise to improve your prospects in your career.
How can I decide my first programming language?
The language you decide to start with doesn’t need to be the only language you program in for the rest of your life. Programming languages have different rules or syntax however they share common concepts. You can pick your first language based on what you want to specialize in.
Most popular programming languages
HyperText Preprocessor (PHP)
It’s an open-source, the server-side, scripting language used for the development of web applications. It allows you to add dynamic information to the websites. PHP is great for database access so you can access and store relevant information. If you learn PHP you can develop a complete e-commerce website.
Is a general-purpose language for beginners as it is easy to read and understand. With Python, you can develop applications quickly as it supports modules, which encourages program modularity and you can reuse the code. Python is used just anywhere as in web applications, data analysis, AI, machine learning, and social media applications.
Ruby on Rails is a server-side web-application framework that includes everything needed to create database-backed web applications according to the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architecture. The framework provides default structures for a database, web services, and web pages. So, if you are interested in developing web applications, Ruby On Rails framework could be a good start.
Go is an open-source programming language that makes it easy to build reliable, simple, and efficient software with high performance. Go is syntactically similar to C, but with memory safety, garbage collection, structural typing, and simpler concurrency/multithreading.
Objective-C and Swift
Both of these programming languages are mainly used for macOS and iOS i.e. making applications for Apple devices. If you are keen to develop mobile applications on iOS then it is good to learn one of them. Objective C is an old language and hence robust. It is derived from C and SmallTalk. However, Swift is a rapidly growing language and has high performance, it is easy to read and easy to maintain hence recommended for new Apple coders.
C-sharp is a general-purpose programming language used to develop a wide range of applications. You can develop video games, web applications and a lot more. It is an object-oriented language and hence if you know C, C++ or Java it is a lot easier to learn C#.
Java is a class-based Object-Oriented Programming language. It grew popular among developers because it was easy to code as compared to C++. Kotlin is a newer language and has overcome some of the limitations in Java. You can start with coding in Kotlin as it is easy to learn. However, you may not get relevant answers to all critical bugs compared to Java which has a huge community of developers.
Popular Markup Languages
Web pages that you see usually use HTML/CSS. To create static pages or complex applications, you may begin by learning HTML/CSS. HyperText Markup Language (HTML) structures text and content like images and videos that you see on websites. It is a simple and easy language to learn and begin with. Cascading style sheets or CSS is used with HTML to style and format content on your webpages. You can change the color and size of elements, change the entire layout of a webpage and use various visuals on the website.
Popular Database Language
SQL is a language used to communicate with the database. Since the digital world is revolving around data, learning SQL is important to manipulate the data and it is easy to learn SQL.
Tools needed for coding
Once you have decided on the language, your next step would be to run through guided tutorials, videos, and books for references. You may also need to download a suitable browser, a development environment with the code editor, install a database if needed. It is also advisable to join a developer’s community to get support for syntax, errors and testing tips. You could also visit https://hackr.io/blog to get further insights as to what is in vogue today with best practices for coders.
Which programming language pays the most 2019?
People who code have many names such as coders, programmers, developers, computer scientists, and software engineers and so on.
Top 8 Programming Languages that are highly paid in 2019 are:
- ‘Go’ tops the list with an average salary level of about $110,000 per year in the USA
- Ruby (on Rails)
You are never too old to Code
At 82 years, Masako Wakamiya is one of the oldest coders on the planet. When she first began to write code, she was using the abacus for Math. Today she is one of the world’s oldest iPhone app developers, a trailblazer in making smartphones accessible for the elderly. Looking at the high-velocity innovations and developments happening in the software ecosystem, it is never too late in life to become a coder since what is new today will be obsolete tomorrow. At this time, the world requires more coders than ever before. You are never too late to become a coder. All you need is the passion and the time.
Interesting in coding? Here are the programming community recommended best tutorials and courses: https://hackr.io/tutorials/learn-intro-to-programming