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I'm a teen who has been programming for about 3 years, I can do some basic Software and so, but I feel I can't do all by myself.

What can I do to find people interested in Programming ? None of my friends does, I only have a Cousin which is studying Software Engineering, but he is in another country.

I live in Spain, so It's more difficult that in USA.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by MichaelT, gnat, Bart van Ingen Schenau, Thomas Owens Mar 28 at 9:10

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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At least when I was a kid, my school offered "Robotics" (a few Lego MindStorms kits and other things) as a extra curricular activity. This ended up gathering a few people who has interest in programming but no one to share it. Maybe you could talk your school principal to offer something like that? –  Vitor Sep 12 '11 at 12:38
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You could try looking for hackathons and other such events aimed at under 18s. In Britain (and moving abroad) we have Young Rewired State which does this. –  AndyBursh Mar 28 at 8:33

7 Answers 7

up vote 13 down vote accepted

You can contribute to open source and you will find people from all over the world , you can look at their code and learn. Some open source groups are very elitist some friendly. Choose your pick.

Good for you on starting early :)

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+1 for learning through Open Source! –  Atul Goyal Sep 12 '11 at 10:15

If you're talking about actually meeting up with real people you might find this difficult as a teenager. The easiest places to meet like-minded people when it comes to programming are probably at college/university and/or when you get a job as a programmer. Perhaps there are evening computing classes you can attend nearby?

On the other hand, not having programmers local to you is hardly an impediment to progressing as a programmer. There are countless ways of communicating/collaborating with people over the internet. Find an open source project you're interested in and start contributing. You won't meet people face to face but you can still get the benefit of other people's experience and knowledge. Start following projects on sites like github or create your own projects and ask others for help.

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There are various options that help you reach many people sharing your same interests.

  • Write a blog about programming, in a blog platform with many users.

  • Create an open source project or contribute to an existing one. If it's something people like to use, you will find many who will join and help you.

  • Follow programming groups on social networks.

  • Search on programming related forums. There are many people willing to start a common project, or looking for help.

  • Go to a college or university, you will meet many people with your same interests there.

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Nice answer, though writing a blog is often very difficult. –  rightfold Sep 12 '11 at 17:56
    
@WFP: right, that's why you should choose a blog platform which will give you a better visibility, perhaps even group blogs of the same content (I'm not a blog expert so I'm just guessing). –  Jose Faeti Sep 12 '11 at 18:14

Finding an open source project that you are interested in and starting to contribute will serve you well. You'll make a bunch of new acquaintances that might turn into friends. You'll certainly learn a lot of useful stuff by doing that.

Another thing you can do is look for part time work in a software company near you. If you're not looking to make a lot of money it's usually easy to get some entry level work. You can learn a huge amount by working with real pros.

There are lots of other ways to contact people who have an interest in programming. The Internet is awesome for that. StackOverflow is a good site if you have questions. There's countless IRC channels and news groups, online forums, etc.

See if you can locate an interest group near you. A Linux user group will have more than a handful of programmers. If there isn't one, you can always think about starting one. I am sure there's a number of like-minded individuals near you that would turn up.

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As the others pointed out, participating in online communities and projects is a very good way to go. I wanted to add yet another option:

You might try to convince your parents to go to a conference nearby on a subject, that interests you. Usually it's fairly cheap for students.

It will definitely give you the chance to meet many people, some of which you will in fact stay in contact with.

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In the real world? Find a hackday/lanuage of choice user group. In the online world, well there's plenty of groups around open source projects, and then you have the wild west of IRC as well.

Start with a specific language in mind and work from there, there's probably hundreds of thousands of groups out there but if you have a direction it'll make it easier to find something relevant to your interests.

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(From both a programmer and a "hobbyst psychologist")

The previous answers have already told you several ways to meet other guys of you same age.

It's good that you want to have friends related to computers & programming, but, its also good you may try to met other guys that aren't related to programming.

Maybe you already have friends that are not computer related, but, since there is a lot of geeks type guys that are not very social, Its very easy to think that you don't have.

I'm a person that learn programming some years ago, and programming wasn't very common, in my hometown, so when I was teenager I actually had to "hang out" with guys that weren't "geek". And it was fun.

There are also, a lot of "Open Source" projects, and "game" projects on the internet, where you can combine your programming skills, with making friends.

In the real world, there is a lot of programmers who want to achieve a program all by themselves, and if you want to make a game, for example, they just having a hard time.

Trying to make a small game, or extend and existing one, could be a good way to work with others.

Good Luck.

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