How I Learned to Program

I’m going to go over how I learned to program/code and when I started. Hopefully, this will help out some people who are struggling to learn and build a better picture of what it’s like to learn programming through my experience. This comes from my personal journey and experience, others will differ greatly, but this is just my two cents on it.

Chronologically speaking, I started out coding in HTML and CSS and then soon after I started programming in JavaScript. JavaScript was my first programming language and I was using it to build simple web pages along with HTML and CSS. I first started learning about HTML and CSS during my freshman/sophomore year in high school and eventually, I started to code after learning about these languages.

I think about all that I have learned since the beginning of high school and how much progress I have made, even if it’s only a little, it is still substantial and I am glad that I didn’t quit.

Right now I am learning a bit more about React. A couple months ago I picked it up and made a couple of projects with what I had learned from Medium articles, YouTube tutorials and Stack Overflow articles. There were quite a lot of long hours where I had no idea what I was doing. I would often think to myself, “Is this even worth doing?”. At the time, it was so hard trying to understand the logic behind React and how hooks worked, what Browser Router was. I still don’t completely understand how useEffect works, though I have some idea, but not the complete picture I need to fully understand it.

One thing I picked up over the years after making apps, websites and programs is that it will always be hard to do. And I say that because I have tried so many different avenues when it comes to software engineering and programming. I realize now that it does not matter how seasoned you are as a software engineer because I guarantee that you will hit a bunch of road blocks. And that’s okay because that’s what software engineering and programming are about.

This is also why I think that people who are in it for the high pay will inevitably fail. Truth be told, that was part of the reason I started to get into coding in the first place. I was in it for the money, to live the good life and relax while doing a job that mattered, but overtime that changed. After failing time and time again, getting mad that my code never worked, and looking at people who were better than me I realized that you have to enjoy this kind of work if you want to make it anywhere.

Now while there are a whole bunch of problems that come with coding, I think there are an equal amount of reasons why I like it. For example, building a large component for your website and watching it work and interact with other components, finally finishing a project or app and being able to use it, learning a new or efficient way of writing a piece of code and understanding how it works, etc. I could go on but I think you get the point. You either enjoy it enough to keep going or you find something else that makes you happier, it’s that simple.

Below is a web page that I built in React with the GitHub API. It displays all my projects, the language they were written in, and a description.

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Aiden Oliver

Aiden Oliver

An aspiring software developer, hacking enthusiast, and competitive gamer.