13945If you are an entrepreneur and thinking of learning to code, there is no better time to start. Many public figures, businessmen, congressmen, and experts have been encouraging people from all walks of life to consider learning to code. In fact, an entire site is dedicated to the quotes from public figures that sing the praises of learning this skill.
The co-founder of LinkedIn, Reid Hoffman, has said in a quote found in that very collection, “One of the most important skills any entrepreneur should learn is to program . . . . This is a critical skill if you want to start a tech startup, but a basic knowledge of code is useful even in traditional fields, because software is changing everything.”
While the amount of public support for learning to code is growing, this isn’t the only reason to learn. There is also an increasingly extensive selection of resources available to make learning accessible to the average businessperson. It is easier than ever for the beginner to learn to code.
There are lots of great resources for people who are learning how to code. For example, Codeacademy is a free online learning tool for anyone learning to code from scratch. The website also offers an email newsletter subscription called One Code Year. Sign up for the email and you will receive one coding lesson per week for a full year. The lessons get harder each week and build on each other, so you constantly improve.
Or you can visit the CodeHS for lessons and online assignment worksheets similar to the work given back in high school. The homepage shows a picture of an animated dog and a round ball of color. To the left of this picture is a coding space and the animation walks you through code commands that change little things in the picture. You can change the color of the ball or the direction the dog is facing with simple, easy to understand commands. In this way, CodeHS allows the user to simply get used to the coding interface and its consequences.
After learning the basics, the best way to develop your programming skills is to put them to work. Practice as much as you can. Don’t worry about encountering problems, because troubleshooting is the best way to build a skill. If you get stuck, it’s easy enough to Google around and get answers.
In addition, the coding forum StackOverflow has a dedicated user base standing by to answer questions posted on the forum. If you are stuck on something, this is a great place to get help. You can also browse the archives to learn about common problems other users posted and read the answers provided by the community.
You may argue learning to code is a waste of time if you can just hire an IT solutions company to solve all these problems for you. But knowing code will enhance your ability to communicate with your IT company. If you work with a company like Mentel over at mentel.com, you will be able to understand why they want to use Symfony over Ruby on Rails, for instance.