Basic things a programmer should know

Introduction

Nowadays, we have more of amateur self taught developers who skip the very theoretical basics of programming. There are busy with writing more and more of code, without taking out some time to dig into the basics of programming.

The significance of theoretical basics of programming is indispensable, a solid foundation prepares you to be a better developer in the future and to defend your knowledge whenever the need comes.

Whereas if you’re just starting out with your career as a programmer, then this article is a must read. Do not hesitate to read to the end, the knowledge you will acquire from here will go a long way to set you on the right path to a great developer.

Basic things a programmer should know

1. What is programming?

As common as this question appears, it could be the most difficult question to answer even by the proffesional programmers. It is easy to explain to a friend that programming is when you build applications and websites by writting code using HTML, CSS, Python etc. But then when tasked to provide an acceptable definition of programming, you stumble for words. So lets quickly look at the definition of programming.

Definition of programming

Computer programming is the process of writing set of instructions that tell the computer how to perform a certain task.

It is also a process of designing and building an executable computer program to accomplish a specific computing result or to perform a specific task.

2. Programming language

programming language is a set of commands and instructions written in a unique pattern and syntax to give instruction to computer.

If you’re just starting out in your career as a programmer, then there are plenty of languages out there for you to begin your journey. Deciding on which language to learn first can be very challenging, and the truth is, it really depends on what you intend to build. If your aim is to build a website, then you should begin with HTML and scale up all the way to reactjs.

3. Technology vs Language

Language is used in programing to develop applications. Technology is set of programmes to find a new way of solving current systems backlogs.

4. What is a programing STACK

You must have come across the term Fullstack Developers on news, online, newspaper or from a friend. So what does it mean to say STACK or a fullstack developer?

It is important to note that the term stack could mean several things based on the context it is being used. In this article we discuss stack with context to programming.

Meaing of stack

In computing, a stack is a data structure used to store a collection of objects. Individual items can be added and stored in a stack using a push operation.

What does it mean to be a fullstack developer?

Before understanding what fullstack is, lets first break down the components that makes up a fullstack developer.

Programming has to do with speciality, there is what we called Front-End and Back-End of an application. The front end which is the presentation of the application while the Back-End the logic behind how data is being handle.

So therefore we have people who master Front-End programming to give good user interface and provide good user experience on the application and also we have Back-end programmers, people who make sure your payment goes through successfully when you click the pay now button on a website.

Who is a fullstack developer

A full stack developer then is someone who knows how to work with both the Front-End of an application and the backend as well. In otherwords, you have a technical knowledge of the full set of primary technologies that comprise a complete technical solution. Meaning, they can tackle projects that involve databases, building user-friendly websites, or even work with clients during the planning phase of projects.

5. What is an IDE

An integrated development environment (IDE) in a nutshell is a computer application that programmers use to write your code.

There are so many IDE you can pick from, my favourite has been sublime text. It is simple and free of uneccessary whistles.

Visit this page to learn how to Setup Sublime Text for faster coding (Pro hints)

6. What it means by source code

If you open you IDE (sublime or any other) write some code that is executable, then that is your source code.

A more comprehensive definition is, source code is the language or string of words, numbers, letters and symbols that a computer programmer uses.

7. What is a server

A server is just like your computer cpu. It host the files a user sees when they visit your website. A server can also host internet games, share files, and give access to peripheral equipment such as printers.

Learn more on how the internet works here

8. Document Object Model (DOM)

According to wikipedia, The Document Object Model is a cross-platform and language-independent interface that treats an XML or HTML document as a tree structure wherein each node is an object representing a part of the document. You can use the f12 key on your keyboard or right click and click on inspect to view the DOM of a webpage.

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