In my first post, I mentioned how difficult it can be for someone to break into the wonderful world of developing. This can be particularly true for someone who doesn’t have a background in anything tech. There are so many languages and variations of those languages, or so it seems. Do you learn them all at once? Do you read some books? Should you go back to school? The answer is yes. Wait, the answer is also no.. Actually, the answer really depends on what you are trying to do.
Ahh, so there is the next hurdle. What are you trying to do? You want to be a developer? Great. Front-end or back-end? Full stack? (mmm, pancakes..) The problem is, or at least it was for me, that you may not know what you want to do until you do it. What if you focus on Python and hate it? Maybe you thought you were destined to build iOS apps, but it turns out you’re an Android person. Now you have a ton of coding books collecting dust, reminding you to never take a chance on something new.
I asked a few developer friends of mine to help me with a plan. Just give me some tips on where to start, point me in the right direction. I literally got nothing usable. In their defense, they’ve cultivated their skills over time and were probably thinking I should focus my energy on building a time machine so I could start coding a decade ago.
So, maybe you are where I was a few months ago? I am going to do for you what no one was able to do for me. I’m going to tell you where to start. Lucky you! Best of all, I’m going to tell you how to do it for FREE.
Below is a list of free resources, in the order I used them:
This is your gateway app. Start here! The app is designed to give you a quick peak into coding, in about an hour. It’s not much by way of usable skills, but it’s the perfect start. At the moment, the app is only available for Apple devices. There is reportedly an Android version in the works. –insert snarky comment on Apple vs. Android.
If you’re still interested after the Codecademy app (or twitching for my next coding fix like I was), head on over to Skillcrush.com. Skillcrush’s founder, Adda Birnir, learned to code after being laid off (throwing that out there for some inspiration). Skillcrush offers the free 10 Day Boot Camp as a sample of their paid classes. There’s some solid content packed into those 10 days, from explanations on how webpages communicate with servers to coding with HTML & CSS.
Code.org is up next. They have one hour classes on building apps, websites, games and more. More importantly, they have information on some resources for the next step. Some are free, so you can keep this good thing going! I will warn you, the site seems to be geared towards middle and high school children. I promise you, the content is challenging. Just remember, you are smarter than a fifth grader…and it’s free!
There it is! Step by step. This is by no means an all inclusive list of the free resources out there, but this is what worked for me.
As you likely know, I am also learning Swift. There’s definitely been some overlap on this journey. I’m a multitasking kind of gal, but I don’t recommend it for the masses. Learning the syntax of one language is hard enough without throwing another set of rules in the mix.
So now the question is, what’s next? Seriously?? There’s plenty to do here. Come back when you’re done. There WILL be a quiz!
Proudly tweet your accomplishments. Make sure you tag me @_chaseamy so I can cheer you on!!