Category Archives: Programming

Latest Finds for Programming

This is probably going to happen a lot. I have these tabs that I am keeping open so I can eventually start hitting these resources for programming. The easiest thing for me to do is bookmark them, but then I would probably forget about them. To keep a record of my progression I think it might be helpful to keep track of the links I am following here, and look back one day to see what I used, what I didn’t, what was useful, and what wasn’t.

Structure and Interpretation of Programs

This one was recommended on a forum as a great book to read to learn things that help give you the big picture of what computers are used for and what they are capable of. In other words, a book for computer scientists that “programmers” ignore.

That is one interesting thing I have seen on the forums. People argue that there is a difference between a programmer, a software developer, and a software architect. The other argument is that everyone programs, but not everyone can really think strategically about how to program something from the very base of things. In other words, understand machine language, compilers, and object oriented programming. Compilers take the high-level programming language code and translates it into machine code or an assembly language. Depending on the environment you are working it, it could be absolutely imperative to know exactly how that works and how it will affect your outcomes.

I also liked this Chart for Learning a Programming Language. The one section that is for kids includes a link to using Python to program a video game. If you saw my last post I mentioned I decided to focus on Python as my first language. Ruby is probably going to be my second language. I’m trying to focus on the fun languages that other programmers mention. I just recently saw a forum post that said a programmer was super happy to get away from .Net applications and start programming in Ruby. I think Paul Graham was the one who mentioned that the programming languages of the future will be the ones the best programmers choose to use today. I think part of that equation is how much an individual program enjoys a certain language.

Udacity was also a recommeded place to learn computer science, specifically this Intro to Computer Science course. The course materials are technically free, but you need to pay $199/month to get an instructing coach. This also gets you a certificate at the end. It says it is a 3 month course if you put 6 hours a week into it. I can see myself putting 12 hours a week into and it still takes me 3 months, but in either case it would cost me $600 to get this intro to computer science class in that may be equivalent to college credit. I have to research it more though.

I just keep thinking what the future me will think of all this planning I am doing. I know one thing is for sure. Nothing to it, but to do it.

Beginning Programming, The Mountain is Massive

Literally where in the world do you begin? So much out there and if you are trying to teach yourself vs. go to a school… well, it’s just downright scary.

I landed on this page where the guy pretty much lays out what each of the more popular programming languages does and the kind of language you use depends on your job function…

Which Language Should I Learn First?

I also found Lifehacker’s Learn to Code: The Full Beginner’s Guide and the great thing is that it comes in PDF format.

Stanford has a highly recommended course you can take for free online simply called Introduction to Computer Science. Its a basic methodology class that will hopefully teach me more about algorithms and the real basics of programming in general.

And when it comes time to really dig down deep I found this free resource of over 500 books on GitHub. Free Programming Books Seems like they aren’t really in PDF format for the most part but I can always just send them to my kindle because they are one big page of text.

And so I had to pick one language to start with. The best recommendation I got was to start with the easiest language possible because the first language will most certainly be the hardest. While Ruby on Rails has always grabbed my attention the real winner is…

Python!!!

Its what appears to be a simple 13 hour beginner course offered at Codecademy so that’s where I am going to start. Like all things it will take time but I will try to give an update once I am in the middle or at the end of the course.

Learning to Program: Getting Started

This has been a big goal of mine for a long time. I have put it off and put it off. I even tried to go back to college to get an IT degree and got talked into pursuing an MBA instead. As of right now, I still don’t know if that was the right choice or not.

In any case, I found three very good resources to get started in my self-taught course in programming…

1. Learn to Program by Chris Pine
2. Codecademy
3. W3Schools

I am sure more will pop up along the way. As usual, with other projects going on I am sure I will make slow progress here, but it is still one of the higher priorities for learning new things in my life.