Programming for rookies

July 27, 2019

If you have never written a single line of code and want to learn the ropes to cook up some awesome code, you’ve come to the right place. This article assumes that you have little or no experience in coding and that you are ready to invest in yourself for better skill development. All the resources mentioned in this article will be available online, for free.

Getting your hands dirty

Obviously, the presence of a computing device is vital for utilising the following resources. Download an IDE of your choice. I prefer Visual Studio Code. Along the way you’ll come across more sophisticated tools, but for now, an IDE is all you need. Once you’ve acquired the technical requirements, we can look at the educational resources that are available.


CS50x is Harvard University’s introduction to the art of programming and the intellectual enterprises of computer science. This entry-level course is taught by David J. Malan. Topics range from algorithms to web development. Languages like C, Python, SQL, and JavaScript plus CSS and HTML are taught in this course. Problem sets inspired by real-world domains of biology, cryptography, finance, forensics, and gaming are also included.

CS50 Classroom

CS50x is perfect for beginners who wants to get involved in the world of coding. The lectures are engaging, and the course content includes essential topics for all aspiring coders. The course content is available for free on edX.

Stack overflow to the rescue

At some point of time, you’ll encounter errors in your code. If it seems cryptic, fret not! If you had that problem, chances are, someone else had it too. The developer community is fairly large and the answer to your issue will probably be in one of the forums like stack overflow. If you still can’t find an answer, don’t hesitate to ask for help; bug squashers from all over the world will swoop in to assist.

Much to learn, you still have

The problem sets provided by your tutors can only do so much. One of the most effective ways hone your skills is to identify and solve the problems you already have, with your new-found knowledge. For me, it was my math homework. The answer was a java program that could print out answers to my 8th grade math problems, along with the steps involved in it. By the time I had a functional program in my hands, 8th grade was already over. I spent weeks trying to automate something that could be done in minutes. But it was totally worth it.

Tools for Survival

Coding can seem intimidating at times; A single bug can haunt you for days. You’ll feel like every path leads to a dead end; scrolling up and down your code, agonizing over that error, which even google can’t answer. This is the point which defines an innovator. The fundamental attribute that separates an inventor from all else is - and always will be - persistence.

“There is no failure except in no longer trying.” 

- Chris Bradford

Bugs are fundamental in coding. They’ll always be there, and they’ll keep coming. Victory lies in your determination and will to succeed.


Docs and Thoughts for aspiring Cybernauts.

Written by Team KINEX