How To Start Learning Code

How Do I Learn To Code?

So you’re wondering how to learn to code?

Code opens up new career opportunities and provides an advantage against the competition. It’s also gotten a lot of hype over the past few years and for good reason. Coding is now being described as the most important job skill of the future.

While the reason you’re reading this might be different than career development, coding is no different than any other line of work or point of interest. The most effective way to learn something new is to dive in, fully, and immerse yourself in it.

Coding is a sea of options, styles, languages, and it could feel like too much at once when looking for where to begin. To avoid being overwhelmed at first, here are a few simple things you could do to incorporate coding into your everyday life that will open your mind and provide you the motivation to learn something new.

Subscribe to podcasts about coding

Podcasts are an easy to absorb format that allows you to listen while you continue living your life. If you commute to work, train at the gym, like to cook, or go for a run, podcasts are available when you are.

While you likely won’t learn to write code while listening to these podcasts, coding podcasts will help you dive into the mind of a software developer and take away some best practices for the future.

One of the best places to start is the CodeNewbie Podcast. The reason is in the name. A lot of guests on the CodeNewbie Podcast are coders who just started at their first development job.

On a recent episode, CodeNewbies talks with Tess Posner, the Managing Director for TechHire, about how to get your first tech job.

Another great place to learn about coding is on the Developer Tea Podcast. Hosted by Jonathan Cutrell, Director of Technology at Whiteboard, Developer Tea covers a wide variety of topics related to the career of being a developer.

Watch TV shows to get into the groove

It might sound like telling you to sit on the couch and do nothing but watch coding-inspired stories is counterproductive, but we’re talking about immersing yourself into everything coding!

Mr. Robot on USA Network, is a hit television show. You’d be wrong if you believed a glamorized reproduction of underground hacking that won both Emmy Awards and Golden Globe Awards didn’t do their research.

On the contrary, a lot of the hacking sequences are modeled after real-life hacking attempts and even makes sure that the on-screen portrayals are as real-to-life as possible.

Silicon Valley on HBO, is an over-the-top take on the world of tech. Not solely focused on coding, the show is about a group of tech company founders and their hilarious journey to become a success.

For as funny and not exactly real-to-life Silicon Valley is, sometimes they nail areas of the development business better than real-life companies.

Bookmark these blogs

Reading about other people’s experiences with coding and their lives as a developer will bring you to their world in a quick and raw way.

  • Firehose writes about learning code and offers major classes if you want to go further
  • Coding Horror is a great look at software developer Jeff Atwood’s public research and ongoing coding adventures
  • DotNetCurry helps developers keep track of .NET and JavaScript technology news and happenings
  • Xamarin’s Blog focuses on C# and native mobile app development
  • Stack Overflow, while not a blog, is one of the largest online communities for developers to share their knowledge and learn new coding techniques

Tweet with these developers

If you aren’t already an active user of Twitter, become one and follow these accounts to learn more about code.

  • @developerscode is Ka Wai, the founder of DoneDone, he regularly tweets about development topics and light-hearted code based jokes
  • @ThePracticalDev shares coding resources and commentary
  • @CodeNewbies is the paired twitter account to their podcast we mentioned earlier. Created by @saronyitbarek (also worth a follow), they host a #CodeNewbie Twitter chat every Wednesday night – a great way to connect with fellow new coders.
  • @DBNess is Vanessa, a co-founder for Girl Develop It and regularly discusses software development

There are plenty of other Twitter accounts worth following, some of which you’ll discover from following these accounts. Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many accounts, start with these four and work your way up.

Learn to code

Sure, there is a counter-movement to learning to code, but learning new skills is never a bad idea. By all means, what matters most in your immersion of code is actually learning to do it, right?

Like Twitter, there is an endless list of other classes, boot camps, nano degrees, and other coding programs to pick from. Start simple, with an introduction class.

  • Code Academy rethinks education with a focus on interactive cues inspired by Facebook and Zynga. Classes are broken into parts and have quizzes to help you get better along the way.
  • Firehose created a project where the immersive education experience brings you through each topic in succession by building real, functional web apps.
  • Udemy houses classes for any topic you could think of! There is a special focus on tech, like coding. A class to think about is Pre-Programming, everything you need to know before you code. 94 percent of students who took the class rated it 4 out 5 stars or better with a total of 7,700 students enrolled.
  • Free Code Camp is an open source community that teaches code. Students can learn at a pace that works for them, and when a certificate is completed, they can put their skills to good use coding for non-profit partners. And with over 1 million dollars in pro-bono work so far, Free Code Camp is a great place to learn and give back.

Wanting to find yourself in a world of coding doesn’t have to be an overwhelming experience. There is a lot to learn, and a lot of smart people and websites to learn it from.

If there is anything rewarding about coding, it’s that there is always something new to learn.