Learning new skills, programming languages, frameworks, ways to get in the zone, remembering, and generally improving one's skills. Closely related to teaching.

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135
votes
31answers
18k views

How do you dive into large code bases?

What tools and techniques do you use for exploring and learning an unknown code base? I am thinking of tools like grep, ctags, unit-tests, functional test, class-diagram generators, call graphs, ...
12
votes
11answers
3k views

How does one keep up with all the new tools/languages/framework? [closed]

Just wondering how everyone keeps up with it. I mainly work with ASP.NET and Windows form, but I'm stuck using 3.0 for business reasons. So most of my self education is on my own time (weekends, ...
145
votes
11answers
39k views

How can I find a good open source project to join? [closed]

I just started working a year ago, and I want to join an open source project for the same reasons as anyone else: help create something useful and develop my skills further. My problem is, I don't ...
75
votes
24answers
13k views

How do I improve my coding skills? [closed]

Here's a bit information about me, before starting with the question. I am a Computer Science Undergraduate, Java being my primary coding language. The basic problem in my University are the ...
44
votes
13answers
9k views

How to find a programming mentor? [closed]

I decided to learn programming. I've been reading SO for few days, and I think I will start with C++, as I read some articles. I am aware of loops, arrays, program logic and objects a little and I ...
49
votes
28answers
12k views

How do people read big technical books? [closed]

I see that most of the good programmers have the habit of reading big books for learning about technology. What does it really take to read technical books, apart from the real interest on the ...
94
votes
11answers
55k views

How can I teach a bright person, with no programming experience, how to program? [closed]

I have been asked to take a person in our IT department who has no programming experience but is a smart and capable person and help him move into programming at lets say an entry level developer ...
21
votes
8answers
8k views

Learning Multiple Languages Simultaneously [closed]

When learning new languages, is it better to commit yourself to one language 100% and wait until you've "mastered" it to move on to another, or to work on learning different languages at the same ...
54
votes
16answers
11k views

I don't know C. And why should I learn it?

My first programming language was PHP (gasp). After that I started working with JavaScript. I've recently done work in C#. I've never once looked at low or mid level languages like C. The general ...
21
votes
7answers
3k views

Should I keep investing into data structures and algorithms?

These days, I'm investing heavily in data structures and algorithms and trying to solve some programming puzzles. I'm trying to code and solve with Java and Clojure. Am I wasting my time? should I ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

How much do i need to learn in order to get an entry level asp.net job? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: If you develop with ASP.NET, which other technologies do you use? I'm currently learning C#, but I've noticed that there is a lot of demand for ASP.NET developers. I ...
23
votes
9answers
1k views

How should I go about learning a very large and complex application? [duplicate]

Being a young and fairly inexperienced developer recently employed by a "real" software company I'd like some opinions and pointers on how to do the following: Approaches on how to get familiar with ...
21
votes
7answers
1k views

Does software reuse preclude process repeatability

The Problem - Code Reuse I was thinking about this question on software delivery, and I kept coming back to the issue of repeatability and / or reproducibility. They matter, because if you don’t ...
8
votes
6answers
955 views

Should I focus on being deep or broad

I have been a professional developer for just over half a year and have been amazed at how big the world really is out of college. I have continued to learn in my free time but I am wondering where ...
48
votes
12answers
9k views

Is there a canonical book on mathematics for programmers? [closed]

I'm a self-taught programmer. I am honestly not good in math. What advice you can give to improve my Mathematical skills so that I will not be so insecure around my fellow programmers? What are the ...
73
votes
11answers
6k views

How can I make sure that I'm actually learning how to program rather than simply learning the details of a language?

I often hear that a real programmer can easily learn any language within a week. Languages are just tools for getting things done, I'm told. Programming is the ultimate skill that must be learned and ...
92
votes
14answers
12k views

Learn programming backwards, or “so I failed the FizzBuzz test. Now what?”

A Little Background I'm 28 today, and I've never had any formal training in software development, but I do have two higher education degrees equivalent to a B.A in Public Relations and an Executive ...
38
votes
7answers
38k views

How do I learn Python from zero to web development? [closed]

I am looking into learning Python for web development. Assuming I already have some basic web development experience with Java (JSP/Servlets), I'm already familiar with web design (HTML, CSS, JS), ...
51
votes
9answers
1k views

Where do you find the time? [closed]

I find myself lagging behind on new skills, techniques, language features, etc, and I am finding the time to do so is lacking. Between work, professional, personal and family obligations, I'm lucky to ...
18
votes
11answers
2k views

How do you learn a new programming language? [duplicate]

I am C++ developer with some good experience on it. When I try to learn a new language ( have tried Java, C#, python, perl till now) I usually pickup a book and try to read it. But the problem with ...
11
votes
4answers
874 views

Non-English-based programming languages [closed]

The University of Antioquia in Colombia teaches its introductory programming courses in Lexico, a Spanish-based, object-oriented .NET language. The intent is to teach programming concepts in the ...
1
vote
6answers
444 views

Trying to learn ASP.NET [closed]

I have a background in computers and have programmed for about 7 years. I switched careers, and became a Technical Writer, and now think I should jump ship again, back to being a programmer. Of ...
31
votes
19answers
4k views

“Half of everything you know will be obsolete in 18-24 months” = ( True, or False? ) [closed]

Just ran across this, and wondering if anyone has a way to prove or disprove this statement: Something to keep in mind ... what's the half-life of knowledge in high tech? It tracks with ...
15
votes
8answers
1k views

Is perfectionism a newbie's friend or enemy? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where do you draw the line for your perfectionism? I see that the development community is very focused on doing things the right way and personally I would like to do ...
102
votes
18answers
25k views

How does learning assembly aid in programming?

I have been programming in higher level languages (Python, C#, VBA, VB.NET) for around 10 years and I have completely zero understanding on what's going on, "under the hood." I am wondering what are ...
23
votes
8answers
6k views

The importance of javascript and the best way to learn it? [duplicate]

I'm a new graduate, but I have been doing web development for about six months. When I was finishing university the server side languages (PHP, Java) were more important then client side languages. ...
54
votes
13answers
2k views

When do you not give help to less experienced programmers?

Do you think that its a good idea when a junior programmer needs help to always jump in and try to educate them? Or will they ignore all the "teaching to fish" advice you give them and just focus on ...
24
votes
15answers
3k views

Can One Get a Solid Programming Foundation Without Going To College/University? [closed]

First, I have already searched the site and read all the previous "self-taught vs. college" topics. The majority of the answers defended that going to college was the best choice, for two main ...
13
votes
10answers
4k views

Programmer aptitude test [closed]

I have many friends that see what I do, find it interesting and ask me the question Do you think I could be a programmer? My response is ... ummm ... do you like math? I'd like to have a ...
5
votes
6answers
6k views

What is the best way to learn programming if you've never done so before? [closed]

Like the title says, what is the best way to learn programming if you've never done so before? Should one start explaining variables, sequential execution, objects, algorithms; where does one start? ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Books or websites containing easy programming problems? [closed]

I have seen (and have) books with programming problems perhaps targetted at bright college students who have finished (or mostly finished) a programming class, or even graduates studying for job ...
1
vote
0answers
393 views

Understanding interfaces [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When to use abstract classes instead of interfaces and extension methods in C#? Why are interfaces useful? What is the point of an interface? What other reasons are ...
83
votes
38answers
7k views

What programming skills have provided you the best return on investment? [closed]

What are the things that took you only a little time to learn, but had a big payoff? And how long did it take to learn enough before the they began to pay off? For instance, I’m not a master of ...
100
votes
10answers
10k views

On developing deep programming knowledge

Occasionally I see questions about edge cases and other weirdness on Stack Overflow that are easily answered by the likes of Jon Skeet and Eric Lippert, demonstrating a deep knowledge of the language ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Algorithm for Learning development [closed]

This is a fairly general question. I know a bit of Perl and Python and I am looking to learn programming in more depth so that once I get the hang of it I can start developing applications and then ...
22
votes
11answers
10k views

How necessary is it to learn JavaScript before jQuery? [closed]

In my opinion, when I looked at JavaScript, it looked like not my cup of tea. When I came across jQuery, I loved it. I sat and watched Nettuts+ 15 days of jQuery screencasts, 1 year later and now I'm ...
23
votes
16answers
20k views

How can I figure out if programming is right for me? [closed]

I have an IT background and was pretty confident until an opportunity came up at work to go into programming(C#). I have never programmed before this, and the software I am programming for is a ...
13
votes
5answers
13k views

What's your advice for getting Oracle Certified Professional Java Programmer certificate? [closed]

I intend to get the certification but am not completely sure how to effectively prepare myself. So I'm wondering if you have any advice on the matter; in particular I would like to know: What should ...
11
votes
3answers
8k views

Entity Framework and layer separation

I'm trying to work a bit with Entity Framework and I got a question regarding the separation of layers. I usually use the UI -> BLL -> DAL approach and I'm wondering how to use EF here. My DAL would ...
11
votes
7answers
3k views

How important is studying algorithms and theory is to becoming a great programmer? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should I keep investing into data structures and algorithms? I'm a CS student. I want to become a really great programmer, what do I need to do to be come a great ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

Best book to learn objective C for experienced programmers [closed]

I am an experienced C#/C++ developer. What is the best book to learn Objective C for programmers like me? PS: I interested in developing for the iPhone.
7
votes
4answers
532 views

What's a good resource for learning about all the different programming paradigms? [closed]

I want to improve my programming knowledge - filling in holes and working out what I don't know - and a good way to do that seems to be understanding all the different programming paradigms that are ...
19
votes
9answers
6k views

Is it essential to learn algorithms to be a real programmer?

I'm a PHP programmer, and until now I have not needed to learn algorithms... Now I'm start learning Python (a real programming language), because I need to use matplotlib. Does it make sense to start ...
11
votes
1answer
610 views

How to verify the Liskov substitution principle in an inheritance hierarchy?

Inspired by this answer: Liskov Substitution Principle requires that Preconditions cannot be strengthened in a subtype. Postconditions cannot be weakened in a subtype. Invariants ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

Learning to program on punchcards

I'd like to try programming with punch cards once in my life. How can I do this? I'm in my 30s, and grew up entirely in the PC era, programming on computers with screens and keyboards. I want to ...
8
votes
6answers
2k views

Which programming language is the best to start learning/teaching about programming [closed]

As this question is closed, let me do an attempt that actually meets all 6 requirements. At our faculty, there's for the moment a big change in the classes "informatics". We used to teach Java, but ...
22
votes
17answers
17k views

Is COBOL still worth learning? [closed]

Does learning COBOL still make sense?
4
votes
1answer
549 views

What do you need to master a language and its technology? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: how to really master a programming language Let say about Java(just a sample, you can talk about C#, PHP, C++ ... it's just similar) and 10 (ten) levels, 1 is newbie and ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Learning embedded systems development without supervision [closed]

I have graduated this year and got my first job involved with C programming, Linux administration and embedded systems development. I feel quite content with my job, but I'm afraid I won't become a ...
3
votes
1answer
817 views

Is “PHP and MySQL Web Development, 4th ed.” an outdated book to learn from?

I want to get into web stuff, and thought of going with PHP+MySQL. I have experience in C#, C++, desktop graphics, but no web stuff besides HTML, CSS which I started learning 2 months ago. On SO ...