In CodeBerry Programming School’s “Basics of Programming” series, we discuss programming-related topics and everything you need to know to get started. Stay tuned for new articles and find the answer to every “what”, “why”, and “how”, you may have had about coding!

Would you like to learn how to code, online? Come and try our first 25 lessons for free at the CodeBerry Programming School.

Basics of Programming

Introduction

In 2019, programming skills are in high demand. According to the CNBC article, “The 20 Best Jobs in America in 2019”, Software Engineering is the 10th best job with a median base pay of $104,000 per year. In addition, this list includes a number of other jobs in which programming skills would be extremely beneficial, if not a specific requirement. The top job specified is Data Engineer. It’s perfectly reasonable to expect that programming skills would go a long way in helping you land a role in this field. 

In this article, we’re going to go over some of the many reasons why you should learn programming and how it could change your life. This could be through obtaining a new career or simply building some cool stuff to show off to your friends. We’re going to talk about money and the ways in which coding skills can be applied in various different areas. We’re also going to talk about how gaining these competencies can actually help you develop as a person in an increasingly digital world.

Money

It’s an unavoidable fact: salaries are super important. Most people want to know that any time investment they make into learning new skills will pay off in the future.

As mentioned above, some of the most sought-after skills in today’s world are programming related. From simple scripting to building software that will push the boundaries of science as we know it – see Katie Bouman’s amazing black-hole imaging program – technology is becoming increasingly intrinsic to the very fabric of society. And code is what drives it all. So, it may not come as a surprise that companies will pay a ton of money to get great developers into their teams.

Here are some stats about software salaries to get you excited about your future prospects.

According to payscale.com, entry-level software engineers get paid these salaries in the following US cities:

  • New York, New York – $96,200 per year.
  • San Francisco, California – $112,368 per year.
  • Austin, Texas – $79,154 per year.

Remember: It’s important to do your own research before making any decisions.

Control Your Own Destiny

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a degree in Computer Science to be a programmer. There are very few requirements for getting started; just a computer and an internet connection. With these two things, you can start learning and taking online courses in no time. Additionally, there are many free programming resources that come with practice problems.

This opens up a number of possibilities for the budding programmer. While salaried software development jobs are sometimes better in terms of money, job security and benefits, there are many other avenues available with their own unique appeal. I’ll talk about some of these below.

Freelancing

If you’d like to work for yourself, choose your own clients and even decide when to get out of bed, this might be for you. There are various services on the web which help with this lifestyle, such as Upwork, Codementor, and Freelancer. If you don’t want to use one of these sites, you could court your own clients and build relationships and connections within the industry. A lot of big tech companies started this way – with just a couple of people working for themselves to build their dream.

Start your own online business

Have no interest in becoming a software engineer by trade? So what! You can still leverage your programming skills to build your own business, whether that be in e-commerce, private consultancy, construction or… anything really!

Develop New Skills

Learning to code is more than just learning to code. It’s actually learning to think analytically, break down problems, design solutions and loads of other things. For example, if you’re working with others on a project, you’ll learn collaborative skills. If you’re building a complex piece of software or a computer program that you want to ship to others, you’ll learn communication skills, because you need to make sure you document it as well as possible. 

Learning to code isn’t just about putting words on a screen in a specific order; it’s about transforming the way you think about things. And those kinds of competencies are valuable in any area of modern life. 

Don’t learn popular programming languages because everyone else is doing it. Choose what you want to learn! 

Limitless Possibilities

Learning to code opens up a world of exciting possibilities, whether you decide to learn web development, game development, or Android development. Once you’ve learned the basics, you can build video games, websites, desktop applications, and mobile apps. You can create scrapers that trawl through web content and gather data. You can build visualization software, which can take large amounts of inaccessible information and present it in a clear manner. Want to build an evil Artificial Intelligence equipped with machine learning, enslave humanity and eventually take over the known universe? Why not? You can do that too (maybe).

Another fun and creative thing that’s possible with coding skills is generative art. This is the art that is created by drawing pixels onto the screen based on some kind of algorithm. I came across a website not too long ago that takes three values—day, month & year—and uses them in a mathematical equation to generate an image. You can see an example of this here. Cool, right?

You can also contribute to open-source projects. This is software that’s built under a special license and available for free use in any other software. It’s often a team effort, and a great way to make friends and be a part of something much bigger than just yourself. There are loads of projects out there right now waiting for your input.

These are some great examples of things you can do with code, but truthfully, they barely even scratch the surface. The only way you can begin to explore the countless possibilities is to put your hands to the keyboard and get started.

Conclusion

We’ve looked at a few reasons why you should learn programming. We’ve talked about the salary prospects, the ability to control your own destiny, its benefits in helping to develop other skills and all the cool and creative possibilities it brings. 

Furthermore, it’s becoming more essential to our very lives each and every day. We live in a digital world, and this is only going to become truer as time progresses. If you start developing these skills now, you can try to ride the wave rather than be helplessly carried along with it. The resources are out there and you can start today.

So, what are you waiting for?

In CodeBerry Programming School’s “Basics of Programming” series, we discuss programming-related topics and everything you need to know to get started. Stay tuned for new articles and find the answer to every “what”, “why”, and “how”, you may have had about coding!

Basics of Programming

Would you like to learn how to code, online? Come and try our first 25 lessons for free at the CodeBerry Programming School.