10 Things every Beginner Web Developer should know
Tips to help you as a Beginner
I have so far spent two years learning as a web developer.
Here's one important fact I have learnt so far:
No one knows it all.
I am not an expert, and neither is anyone out there. No one can memorize all language's syntax and rules from HTML, Git to React.
Most highly proficient developers are very experienced when it comes to quickly finding answers to their problems. They know where and when to look.
Still, beginners are most likely to find themselves in a quandary regarding how to go about the interesting journey into web development, especially given the myriad of technologies present in the ecosystem.
Here are 10 advices I have for those who are just starting out as developers:
Just Start."I don't have a computer", "My computer is not capable enough",
"I am not smart enough",*
All of those are just excuses, and are not true at all.
Here's a fact:
I started learning how to code websites without a computer. That's right, I used my Android phone to learn.
Not smart enough? Well I used think even worse of myself. Yet here I am.
You will really need to set aside the excuses and put more effort into starting. You don't need any dedicated system or fancy set-up. Just a computer with a web browser and internet connection will do.
As you progress, you will gain more self-confidence.
Find Detailed Resources
As a Beginner, you're starting out with absolutely no knowledge of web development or programming.
For this reason, it's very important that you go for courses and tutorials which contains a lot of information.
Master the basics.
These are the basics to web development. It doesn't matter how or what you use in building your website, you'll always find HTML present.
HTML has really evolved over the years. We now have a new standard which comes with more semantic elements to create meaningful markups and user friendly websites.
CSS is just as important.
No one wants to navigate a site with no or poor design
The learning curve of CSS is quite broad. At the basic level, it's very simple to use. However, as you you scale and start creating more complex sites, you'll start to find CSS to be more interesting and perhaps challenging. That's why it's crucial you have a solid foundation.
You have gGit, which is a source control software, DevTools for app debugging and assessment, and a text editor or IDE like VSCode.
All of these are basics every Beginner must know. And once again, HTML To React covers the basics very well!
Practice Right From the Start.
"HTML is so easy, I don't actually need to practice that."
Wrong Wrong Wrong.
Don't underrate any thing when it comes to web development. You always have something to learn, even when it may not seem like it.
Start playing with code right from the beginning.
Practice Consistently, Build Projects.
That statement is especially true with developers.
You might feel very confident with your abilities after watching a lengthy tutorial but I can assure you that implementation will not be as smooth.
As you practice more, these things happen
You learn things which the tutor may have left out.
You learn how to type faster
You internalize certain syntax and procedures
You get smarter
Practicing is hands-down the best way to learn web development.
It's also the most effective way to conquer your impostor syndrome.
Join an Online Developer Community
This is a very crucial step. One which has helped me a whole lot.
Some of you may already know me on Twitter but for those of you who don't, I joined Twitter on December 2020 and since then some incredible things have happened.
- I have met some very friendly people
- I have grown to nearly 10,000 follows
- I made my first income
- I have learned a lot
You learn a whole lot when you are active in some community.
Apart from Twitter which I highly recommend, here are some developer communities to consider:
- The Practical Dev
This is very important.
Use Tools To Save Time.
I am not telling you to spend $1000 dollars on some high end equipment, friend.
Some of the best IDEs, like VSCode, provides you with a collection of highly useful extensions to save time and increase productivity.
Here are some of them:
- Live Server
- Bracket Pair Colorizer
- Git History
- Auto Rename Tag
- Better Comments.
- Markdown All in One.
You can check out what these tools do and see just how useful they really are.
It would be rather unwise to abandon all these tools for drudgery, don't you think?
Automatic Repetitive Tasks
A lot of processes and tasks are repetitive.
You don't need to do the same thing over and over again. It's not just tedious and boring, it's also a waste of precious time.
This is why I highly advise you get familiar with the command line.
That way, instead of always typing out long commands every single time, you create a simple script that automates the process.
Google is your friend.
Wait, let me rephrase:
Google is your friend if you know how to use it.
Learn how to effectively search for solutions on Google. The accuracy of your search query may hold the balance between you remaining stuck and your salvation.
Don't Overwork Yourself.
I feel attacked writing this particular part, but I am working on it.
You should already know what happens when you overwork yourself:
- Mental stress
- Health Issues
But seriously, don't overwork yourself. Take intermittent breaks while coding. Drink lots of water. Don't persist when you're faced with a very difficult bug. Personally when I confront a difficult problem I close my laptop and stare at the roof.
For 20 minutes.
Maybe I'm crazy, but you get the point.
I hope you got something valuable from this post.
Thank you and see you soon.