According to a report from FutureLearn, an online social learning platform, coding is now the top career choice, over options like medicine or law. Now, whilst this is obviously brilliant news, and a sign that coding may have gained more respect in recent years, there is a worry that this desire is driven by stories about startups being sold for billions of dollars.
Coding isn’t as straight forward as people may hope. It requires a large amount of talent and knowledge to perfect. Many of the developers at Mubaloo started coding when they were very young and have spent years learning their trade and perfecting their skills. In fact, they still do. Developers can never stop learning, because there is always something new to learn.
Technology moves at such a pace that sometimes developers will have to learn a whole new language, if one gets consigned to the history books.We live in a unique era where being able to code and develop apps or software is seen as aspirational. Over the past few years, development has gone from creating software to creating solutions that are improving the way people live. In any industry, coding knowledge can be applied to help make a change. Coding isn’t seen as the preserve of geeks, but a viable way to a great job, great prospects and security.
Wannabe developers shouldn’t just focus on trying to learn one language, but should understand the fundamentals of programming. It’s important to build a good base of understanding and knowledge, to underpin any career in development. If we look at the recent study by Vision Mobile, we see that web technology, HTML5, is the most used by developers, at over 42%. Java, the native language on Android sits at 38% whilst Objective-C, used for iOS, is used by 17% of developers.
One way to learn the fundamentals is to take courses or study it at university. Whilst this will of course help to build the right foundations and an understanding of coding best practices, it is not always necessary. Some of the best coders out there will be self taught and will have spent thousands of hours tinkering, playing and testing whatever they are working on.
Whilst it is great that coding is on the rise, it doesn’t mean that developers always make money. According to the Vision Mobile report, 50% of iOS developers and 64% of Android developers are below the ‘app poverty line’, making under $500 per month from their apps. This, of course talks about developers who will try to go it alone. Developers who choose to work for other companies will stand to make more money, that if they choose to, can supplement their own development outside of work.
There are a huge number of education sessions, meet-ups and other events that give wannabe developers information to help them get into the industry. It’s always worth immersing yourself as much as possible with these, many are also run online so you can join in wherever you are.