New to programming where do to start?

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by kuliand, Feb 8, 2008.

  1. kuliand macrumors member

    Dec 27, 2004
    Im doing a computer science foundation degree this year (proper degree starts next year) and i want to learn to to program in my own time as we haven't covered much in lectures but im finding it hard to get my head round the basics concepts of programming.

    Anyway one of my class mates has done a computer science course before and said they spent about half a term just learning the methods used and basic techniques used to solve problems i think this is what i need as i have never done any programming before and we just jumped straight into VB in lectures so can anyone recommend a website or something that starts with the very basic's? a podcast would be ideal as i learn better when listening or watching.

  2. sord macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2004
    Sigh...not another thread on how to start to program...
  3. Aranince macrumors 65816

    Apr 18, 2007
    There is a video on YouTube about a basic XCode program. Search for XCode
  4. toddburch macrumors 6502a

    Dec 4, 2006
    Katy, Texas
    I just flipped a coin and decided you should learn Ruby. It comes installed on Mac OS X already. It's Object Oriented. There's Plenty of online resources to help you learn it. It's cross platform. It's a very versatile language, and it's actually fun to code in.

    So, there you have it. Ruby. Write a program in it and post it. I'll grade it for you.

  5. sord macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2004
    Nice - I just flipped a coin and it came out to be tails. On topic, I would start with a scripted language (such as ruby or python) for a first language. Learn the general flow of things, learn about variables, methods, etc. Then move to something like Java and learn about OOP (its too easy to cheat if you use ruby or C++ and skip the OOP part (though its also easy to cheat in Java...)) From there, you should have a general idea of how to program and can move to choosing language based on what you want to accomplish (or what you what you prefer).

    I strongly suggest that through your journey you learn to be at least somewhat experienced in a scripted language (they make great quick/easy to write utilities), C or C++, and possibly Java (emphasizing the C or C++ part).

    Finally, take courses and listen - don't just assume you've got it right because it works. You will need to focus on writing well designed, maintainable (not just by you), documented, quality code. I've seen way too may "developers" that should really be in another profession, or go back to school. Never skip doing things the easy way to get to your goal faster (applies to many things other than this topic) -- it will be harder to unlearn your bad habits and you will never produce good quality software if you go that route.

    Finally (part 2), if you don't have a passion for it, try to find something you have a passion for. You will be able to succeed without a strong passion for programming, but you will go much further if you have it.
  6. ScoobyMcDoo macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Just keep attending courses and doing the assignments. I remember my Junior year I still had some concepts that I was having a hard time getting my head around - I was even considering changing majors because I felt like i just didn't get it. Then one day (I think it was when I was taking an assembly language course) a light went on in my head and everything made sense.

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