How do I get programming experience?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by jc0481, Sep 29, 2011.

  1. jc0481 macrumors regular

    Mar 16, 2005
    Hello everyone,

    Right now I am attending school. My degree is a Bachelor's in I.T. with concentration on programming. That's how the schools words it. Right now I work a warehouse job for a small company. I would really like to get programming experience somehow that way I can you my future employer my work experience and get me a higher paying job. My wife and I are expecting our first child around Thanksgiving. I ultimately want her to stay home as much as possible in the future. I know that won't happen right now just one of my goals.

    By the way I don't have any programming experience and not sure what programming language to learn that will provide the most benefits for my goals. I am just taking my beginner classes not my core classes yet.

    Unfortunately I will have to learn a programming language that is geared towards Windows since that what most people use in the office. I have read online to do free work working for a non-profit organization or doing open source work. But some of the information was pretty old.

    Ultimately I want something that will look good on my resume and land me the job in the future.
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    I'd pick up some basic guides on C++ and Java. That's about all anyone uses these days. There is freeware that you can use to do your practice in as well.
  3. Heilage macrumors 68030


    May 1, 2009
    By doing programming. Having a program or two to show might be a good idea if they ask for examples during interviews.
  4. rien333 macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2010
    The Netherlands
    Python is a easy and fun language to start with, and it will be easier to start with more advanced languages like C++ and Java if you learn it first.
  5. harrma macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2011
    It can be hard to get a 'real' programming job whilst studying. My best advice would be to get a graduate position with a big firm when you leave school. During your first year you will get real world corporate programming experience and a good company will give you a lot of training. After that you have the experience and training to look for roles in different areas.
  6. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    The best way to gain experience is to do it. Write some programs, get involved in open source initiatives, look for internship opportunities.
  7. kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    What kills me is that back when mass personal computing began in the early 1980s, many users learned BASIC and got started with programming that way. Even Apple offered Hypercard to make it easy to create apps.

    Now most American buyers just want to click a button and be entertained, and we use programmers from overseas instead of home grown talent. Anyway, enough ranting :)


    OP, one easy way to get started is with Javascript and HTML pages. One advantage is that you get instant feedback on your mistakes when you refresh the page. No need to immediately learn all about compilers, etc. Another is that it actually can lead to a lucrative career.

    I'll leave it to others to recommend the best way to get started with web programming. I edit by hand, but some prefer tools with autocomplete features.

    (You don't even need to use a web server, although that makes it more fun and useful. You can just edit a .html text file on your drive and run it in a browser.)


    Ultimately, as others said, you'll want to know Java, C++, Perl, Python, and as many other languages as possible. All are widely used in business.

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