10 Tips for Becoming a Better Developer

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on 04-Jul-2019

Why settle for good when you can be great?

We all want to become the best developers out there, but how do we achieve this? What are some things we can do to improve ourselves?

Lucky for you, RUBICON’s talented and experienced developers teamed up to discuss what helps them succeed in the world of IT. Follow these tips in order to become a rockstar developer! 

Laptop displaying lines of codes.

1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. No one expects you to know everything. One of the most important parts of learning is to recognize you don't know everything and that you’re willing to learn something new. Accepting that you need help and simply saying to your colleagues “I don’t know this, can you help me?” will lead you to find out the answer quickly and move onto the path of learning something new. FYI the developers around you are great resources.

2. Patience and persistence. The two Ps in programming are patience and persistence. Patience is a virtue especially when it comes to programming and persistence is what helps you get it right. Learning takes time and if you keep trying you’ll eventually get it.

3. Learn from your code reviews. Code reviews are an essential step in the development process for producing high-quality codes. Code reviews ensure that every line of your code is up to standard and is approved by at least two team members. For further direction, you can check out this guide. Take the opportunity to discuss alternative solutions during code reviews, it not only improves the code base but has also a learning effect for all involved.

4. Code and learn after 5 P.M. Coding and learning shouldn’t come to an end when you leave your office. Learn outside of the workplace to gain new skills and come to work ready and full of new information. Luckily in today’s world, the internet provides us with many great learning tools such as Udemy.

5. Read, read and read some more. Read programming books. Choose good quality, general programming books and you’ll soon distinguish yourself from nearly every developer around you. Here are some of our favourites:

  • The Pragmatic Programmer- Andy Hunt & Dave Thomas
  • Clean Code- Robert Cecil Martin
  • Head First Design Patterns- Elisabeth Freeman & Kathy Sierra
  • Code Complete- Steve McConnell

6. Practice writing clean code. Clean code is readable and easily understood by everyone on your team. Implementing clean coding practices will benefit you down the line so you should practice making it a habit from the first line of code to the last.

7. Shortcuts don’t lead to success. Avoid taking shortcuts when writing code. We all know that time is precious but shortcuts will end up taking up more of your time if you make mistakes, therefore take your time in order to provide the best work possible.

8. Focus on learning principles instead of frameworks. Programming languages, frameworks and tools come and go but the principles behind them are here to stay. If you are able to understand the architecture behind the frameworks, then it will make it easier for you to learn new and upcoming things. The world of IT is always changing so being able to understand the core principles will help you adapt to change.

9. Pay attention to the bigger picture. Often times developers get lost in their code and focus mainly on programming a specific feature. Instead, take a different approach and look at the bigger picture (the product). Focus on optimizing and making the best product possible for users.

10. Take a break. Not only does your body and mind deserve a break but you’ll also be boosting your own productivity. Work in time splits and allow your brain to recharge. Take a walk, exercise, grab lunch or socialize. Often times we forget that we’re human and we need to do things other than work.

Follow these steps in order to be the best developer you can be. Happy coding!

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