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How to get good fast?

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Hi, I am interested in what you have to think about this. How do you get good at programming in an effective fashion? I want to learn C# and Unity.

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FYI I read the "its plain" as "its pain" lol. The road is painful in the sense of the amount of time and energy you need to spend on honing your skills. I too like the painter/craftsman parallel, as that's how I see software development in general. Something you hone over many years, and really never stop refining. There isn't anything "fast" about it.

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How to get good fast?

 

 

You don't Programming is a craft and like all crafts it must be mastered and perfected.  Also as already pointed out by Servant of the Lord it is a life long process.
Read books, read online articles and tutorials, frequent forums like Gamedev but above all else practice.

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You might also try to find some people that are working towards the same goal. It can be very helpful if you can exchange your experiences with other programmers and of course you can help each other when you run into problems.

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Everyone else already told you the answer. You get better by focusing your time and effort on practicing. The more time and effort you dedicate, the faster it's going to happen. But it still won't be "fast".

 

Once you learn some programming skills, I recommend this article as a next step:

 
It maps out which games you should tackle in which order and even justifies why.
 
- Eck

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There is one thing I havent read here yet:
Its not only practice and study but most of it
is the will to become better! You have to actually want to become better.
There is one parallel I can think of to make it more clear:
Your whole (school-) life you have been learning and practising
"writing" - such as grammar/spelling/different types of text/...
Yet not everyone (including you), who does this, is a (good) writer..
The same applies to programming & programmers. There are many types
of em: Some like the beauty in it, some just do it because they have to
and want to get the job done, even though sloppily...
I think the best way to learn anything is to do it autodidacticly.
If you let anyone else (teacher?!) shove knowledge down your throat without
really being interested, the results will be just the same as how you learnt to write!
Try to not lose your interest.
Also, stop distracting yourself with such petty worries. Just start learning and practising ^^
To me it almost seems like procrastination xD

 

Oh btw, to your original question at how to actually get better in a fast and effective way:
Well, it just boils down to practising and learning, steadily! And trying out new stuff.

You can buy a book or two and get the basics down.

 

You should tackle some projects / ideas you think you "might" be able to do. There should

still be stuff thats new to you that you have to learn about as you go along. If you repeat this,

you will gain knowledge, little by little, over time. It will become invaluable experience!

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Well if you're rich, you can hire a really good programmer to do all your work for you.

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Some wee tips: spend more time coding than reading (but still do some reading). And if you're copying tutorials make sure you play around with them experiment and try new thing. Make lots of mistakes and persevere in fixing them. You'll learn more from fixing mistakes than doing anything else.

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what helps me is writing pseudo-code when i am not on my pc. The syntax of the language is not hard to pick up but its getting your head around the LOGIC of programming that i struggle with more.

 

if im on the bus to work i will get my pad out and plan the classes, methods etc for a program then write down using pseudo-code how i would implement the methods etc

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Wow, awesome responses here. I am definitely going to peruse what is here, thanks everyone :) Such a great community!

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How to get good fast?

here is something else that may help too.

Find a workflow strategy that suits you, and keep refining it.

 

I believe this happens naturally anyway, wether you are/become aware of it or not. but if you keep it in mind, it could accelerate the process that leads to "getting good fast(er)". Then work on developing other strategies.

Godmil's remarks above are of interest to me here:

"Make lots of mistakes and persevere in fixing them. You'll learn more from fixing mistakes than doing anything else."

 

In this sense, getting better at programming faster, means always trying to make less and less mistakes each time you program and about

fixing the ones you do make asap. And you may get better faster by applying a strategy that will enable you to fix mistakes as they happen and especially if you are able

to do it by yourself(i.e. with your own thinking routine/cognitive skills).

 

So, its a cognitive thing too ( a way of thinking): honing your problem solving skills to find and fix mistakes more quickly. has anyone ever been good enough

never to make mistakes? Not that I know of yet. But you can get good so you make fewer, and/or fix the mistakes fast.

I believe every "successful" programmer has their own personal workflow routine that works, wether they are aware of it or not. I

also believe that a programmer can benefit from being aware of their personal strategy and honing it. Then developing/adapting/adopting

others in a flexible fashion. For me its part of what attracts me to developing/programming. As an example here's a summary of one of my

general strategies:

while(developing software)

{

research (a little)

code(a little)

test(a little)

}

It tends to kepp things fresh and interesting. I have to say this process describes my optimum goals, and is as flexible as I judge it to be for the project. For example, research(a little) may turn out to be research(a lot) if I'm programming in a new domain that requires more knowledge I'm less familiar with or

research(just about nothing) if it is a problem I have dealt with many times before.

code(alittle) and test(alittle): these tend to be not so flexible and depends on my confidence in the new code I write. The term (alittle) represents an arbitrary amount that depends on my confidence level in my ablility to obtain the desired result quickly with minimal testing( there is a bit risk mangement involved).

This is a very important strategy. The potential for errors increases, as the amount of code I write increases. I don't think this point can be emphasised enough, especially for beginners. Maybe some experienced programmers here appreciate my point here: especially those of us that have attempted to help a beginner who may invariably post a bit of code or mountains of code desperately asking for help to debug it because they have "lost thier way" after hours or even days of trying to fix it! I can't help thinking such a beginner is not moving in the right direction, and its not just debugging skills that is needed, but a thinking strategy...

.

Anyhow, while coding a little and then testing a little, and an error occurs, I can be pretty confident I'm very close to the context/source of

that error (i.e. it's usually related to the code added after the last successful test [obviously?]).

There are pros and cons about this strategy that are interesting in thier own right that would be great to discuss(bit nerdy maybe?): but this post seems a bit too long as it is (I don't usually post much), and it might be going a bit off topic? But results of this strategy have proven successful time and time again.

 

This is by no means the only or best strategy, others may have just as valid, or better strategies that work depending on the nature of the project and the individuals preferences/ability to adapt to that nature in a timely fashion. I use this kind of strategy to pick up/refresh  a new (language/ platform/ technolgy) when required for a project that may come along. That is to say, it's useful even if you are an experienced programmer learning something new.

I think that there is a lot more that could be said for developing debugging skills(i.e. mistake management). It still seems to be a critical bottleneck even for some

experienced programmers. I don't know if the OP would mind hearing about other programmer's personal strategies like this. I wouldn't mind.
Or perhaps a thread with a more specific heading could be more appropriate for it.

 

So to sum up: As you spend time developing you will develop a routine (or workflow strategy) consciously or not, and becoming more aware of it and even directing it could help you become good fast. what do others think?

 

ps: I like to think I have become good, but sometimes I wish someone told me something like this along time ago, because I'm thinking it just might have made me "good faster". I don't really know.

Cheers 

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while(developing software)
{
research (a little)
code(a little)
test(a little)
}

 

very interesting piece of code - I am using it too, though this a little is sometimes a bigger step than a little, research takes the bigger amount of time, code seems paradoxicaly a less important [though maybe am overusing research against the code and should code more? dont know,

test is also very important becouse it involves also a design iteration often

 

could maybe someone say how this above scheme looks like in his personal case ?

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Come on guys, I can't believe nobody told him the most important thing...

 

Yes, you need to practice, solve some coding puzzles and understand every single mistake you do to learn from it.

But never forget one of the most important thing for a programmer: coffee! TONS and tons of coffee!

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