17 Computer Programming Tips and Tricks
Whether you are a complete beginner or an experienced computer programmer, you constantly have new things to learn in computer programming. It is easy to know the keywords of a language, it is easy to copy a code found on the Internet, but programming is much more than writing lines of code in a text editor. To program is to settle real problems, to know how to organize your source code optimally; it is to create a program robust and optimized that holds in time.
At the end of this article you will discover 17 basic tips to learn computer coding faster and become a pro. Learning and applying them will earn you definite advantages. Practicing these tips will allow you to go much faster in your daily tasks, avoid certain problems, and make the most of your computer programming capabilities.
Here are 17 Tips and Tricks to become better at computer programming
- Read books and guides
If you seriously want to learn programming, it is obviously necessary for you to have some basics, and the best way to do so is to read, either on the internet or books dedicated for the programming languages in question. From YouTube to free Google tutorials, there are many resources on the Internet you can use. Do not hesitate to get a handy guide, no matter its format, to get started on the best bases. Reading is the key step to learn in almost every field.
During your learning process, Google must be your most loyal friend. You must learn how to do a relevant search, how to adapt your queries in order to return interesting results. In addition, bookmarking sites that you regularly visit will also greatly help.
2. Mater the keyboard shortcuts
In order to save time, it is important to master keyboard shortcuts. Knowing how to do certain actions such as copy and paste, save a document, navigate from window to window, close a document, and others, will save you considerable times. The manipulations may not be easy at the beginning because it is a combination of keys, but once you master them you will never program without them.
Your Windows (or Mac) environment has some specific software that you can use as well. You have to know them to optimize your way of using these tools.
- Increase your typing speed
Without being a typist, you can learn to type without watching on your keyboard for every single word. There are small techniques to familiarize yourself with your keyboard. There are many programs, Mavis beacon for instance, you can use at home to improve your typing skill without going to school. In addition, you can do it on your daily activity: while watching TV, listen to music, or radio, enjoy typing what you hear, as quickly as possible. Turn the learning into fun.
You may not see real improvement at the beginning, but by persisting you will see little by little you will assimilate the placement of the letters.
- Use the taskbar
To access the software, which you use often, you often do the following: click on “Start”, then “All Programs”, then on “Program Folder”, and finally on the program in question. In order to save time, create shortcuts to the software that you often use in your taskbar.
Time is money, and, although love must be the principal motive behind your works, computer programming is no exception. Use your time wisely to make the best of it.
- Make your documents handy
By learning computer programming there are certain documents or files you will use very often. You must absolutely classify your documents in a logical manner. For instance, you can create folders, subfolders, sub-subfolders according to specific tasks or categories. This will help you find your documents easily at any time without any trouble to know where they are.
Your desktop should be “clean” without inactive files. For instance, a “Doc” or “PDF” file that you only access once or a couple times a year, or that no longer serves anything, has nothing to do on your desktop.
Here are the elements that you can keep on your desktop:
- Quick access links to certain directories
- My Computer or Computer (for Windows 7)
- Links to frequently used programs (they would be better to place them in the taskbar)
- Links to web pages (or sites that you visit regularly). Instead of typing the address each time in your browser, you can use shortcuts which in 1 click will redirect you directly to the site in question.
- Remain Calm under the threat
Even under the threat of a blue screen, never panic; this is not the behavior of a professional computer programmer. For every problem there is a solution, and if there is no solution is that there is problem. Depressing yourself will worsen the situation, and decrease your brain capacity to think clearly, and thus decreasing your probability to find a way out.
Here is a simple advice. If you are working on a project and make a mistake or something wrong happens, first and foremost, keep your calm, and try to solve the problem. If the first attempt does not work, leave the computer and find something funny to do; sex is greattttt. Once your mind fully relaxes, come back to the project.
- Backup your data
Your computer is not invincible; It can crash when you least expect it. I cannot count the number of people who have solicited my help because their computer crashed, and they lost everything. To save you this trouble, make regular backups. USB keys, external hard drive, CD, DVD, cloud, thousands of solutions exist, you have no excuses.
Using any of these cheap means can easily avoid you preventable problems and costly repairs.
- Create Partitions
As previously stated, your computer is not infallible. As soon as possible put a strategy in place to create partitions. Thanks to the partitions, you will be able to separate your data from the operating system.
Your disk will thus “split” into several parts. Imagine a part with “Windows” (your operating system) and a part with your data (Photos, videos, music, PDF, working documents etc.). in this case, if your operating system crashes, you can reset the part that contains it. The partition that contains your data will not be impacted.
- Install Antivirus
Cyber attack is everywhere and it happens every day on the internet. Your server is vulnerable without an anti malware. While you are working or sleeping Criminals hackers may be attempting to damage or destroy your computer network or system. Antivirus analyzes, detects potentially dangerous threats on your computer, and gets rid of them. You can buy or download a free antivirus program on your pc to be safer when navigating the internet.
Tip, on the latest versions of Windows, the Windows Defender antivirus is available for free. Activate or download it on your pc. It is more effective than many paid programs being sold on the internet. You cannot learn computer programming without having some malware protection. This is gambling.
- Take Cloud computing
Take advantage of the power of internet-based computing (cloud). The future belongs to cloud solutions. The cloud is a term for designating applications / software online. The great advantage of these tools is that they are accessible from anywhere in the world, on any machine, from the moment you have an internet connection.
Online data storage, online music, on-line word processing….the possibilities are numerous. If you want to learn computer programming and remain up-to-date you need to start using these tools now.
- Don’t just follow
When installing software, stop the “Next, Next, Next syndrome”. The creators of these programs analyze this behavior well, and they benefit from it. During installation, you will be asked to install “components” that are only software for advertisements. The checkboxes to accept these components are already checked by default. And by clicking on next, next, next, without analyzing, you validate the installation of these components.
Very soon you will realize that your computer is infected with bugs or virus without knowing where they come from … Look no further but your latest installed programs and uninstall them. Some are malicious programs which can steal your identity.
12. Read and use examples
Whether it’s on blogs or in other people’s codebooks, take inspiration from what exists to continue improving your computer programming ability. Being a computer programmer you will always have new techniques to learn. This is a progressive world; if you don’t make progress and keep up with the advance in the technologies you will be left behind. You do not need to reprogram everything that exists in every new program, but time to time accomplish something new.
This is a typical beginner error: wanting to program everything from scratch. Although the desire to know everything in the background can be positive, you will never be able to program or know everything from scratch when it comes to computer coding. And if you do not believe me, start learning the assembler and try to keep up with it every day. The purpose of computer programming is to understand the operation of systems and write programs that solve a problem, not spend hours doing what already exists.
- Join Programmer Communities
Sharing knowledge is very important in learning in addition to helping others moving forward. If you have the opportunity to do a project with other professionals, and get their advice, you will gain a lot in productivity. There are plenty of computer programming communities where you can join for free.
Sites like StackExchange have an extremely active community with members who respond almost instantly to requests. In addition, you can join the following communities:
- Hacker News
- Reddit Programming
- A List Apart
- MIT Open Courseware
- Teach Others Helping Others
Helping others is learning computer programming while providing a service is the best way to become a professional computer programmer in a short period of time. Teaching others is a great way to learn for many reasons, including:
- You repeat or rewrite what you have learned and known: repetition is an excellent way to burn things in our memory.
- You will find new challenges that will require you to do some research, and thus learn new things at the same time.
- Test your programs
This is not only mediocrity but also total waste of time to create programs that are not fully functional, very memory intensive or simply not very optimized. Being satisfied with a non-functional program and continuing this way does not help to do better afterwards. You have to place yourself on the side of the programmer but, most importantly, on the side of the consumers as well.
This does not mean that you should not make mistakes. The idea here is be able to recognize and correct them. Even if you write a great program if users cannot use it efficiently your work is basically worthless.
- Be passionate in what you are doing
Doing what you love gives more motivation to persist even when you face serious challenge and disappointments. Have fun programming as if it is your passion, not a profession. This is one of the most important points to become an expert in the field. Look, virtually every major project that exists today has been created by passionate programmers.
It is impossible to be able to achieve something to the fullest without loving to do it. Put your soul in what you are doing and the success will eventually come.
- Program, program and still program
Computer coding is part of the “know-how”, and this is acquired from regular practice. This science requires a lot of practice more than many other informatics. Practicing also opens the way to make mistakes and, most importantly, learn from them in order to not repeat them again in the future. That is, if you really want to become a computer programmer, you need to program, program, and still program.
Computer programming is mostly based on learning by practicing, and the more you practice, the more you will know how to program.