How I learned PHP and Javascript

Published Nov 03, 2017
How I learned PHP and Javascript

About me

I'm a Colombian guy, 43 years old, It seems was yesterday when I was reading something wrote by someone with more than 30 years old and my feelings were, oh this guy is old. Guess what? now in this position I don't feel old at all, In fact, I feel more awake than back then. I'm married, yes, living with the same woman since 16 years ago, imagine that kids, now we have 2 daughters those helped me to understand the "old guys life (mom, dad, grandpa, grandma, etc)" I now know how to love better than before.

Why I wanted to learn PHP and Javascript

I have been always developing in desktop mode, Visual Studio C#, Visual foxpro, Clipper, C language, Delphi, PowerBuilder. When web development started, I was involved in so many desktop projects that I didn't understand that web development was starting to get more space, year after year, now it's better to understand how to code web than desktop, talking in monetary mode. So I started with asp.net pages and it's good, but always so many money involved for the clients, so I started to investigate the best language with the lower money investment needed, and PHP was my selection. There are more, but for me now I want to continue working with PHP, a few more years until a new language be the next one to learn. Javascript is a beautiful language to do a lot of great programs on the client side, that´s why this is another language that I love.

How I approached learning PHP and Javascript

I started learning by reading the PHP and Javascript manuals on the web. Later I started from scratch to do some projects and then I needed to develop my first web application.
I'm renting my software, so this means that I need to be reading about new technologies and how to be always improving my own software, I don't want my clients be bored always seen the same.

Challenges I faced

I have faced a lot of challenges, because when I started the page I was still learning, like now of course, and a lot of already created functions were unknown to me, so sometimes I was trying to "reinvent the wheel". I did some jobs of several hours of programming that later I changed by a few functions already built in the language.
Sometimes I did a design for my clients and I show them in paper and they approve it, but when implemented on the site, they decide to change everything and in my first times this was a "horror movie" because I didnt work well and almost needed to change everything in the development side. Now that I learn a lot more, this is not happen anymore, just a few changes in the respective "layer" and ready to go.

Key takeaways

I always like to give people a tool (software/program/app) to be more efficient in their jobs or daily life. When an old software is converted to a new version, I love to see the good reactions in people, seeing their old program with a new face. And also I like to explain to the haters that the new software will help them more than before, when the last ones approve it the satisfaction is the double. All software can be improved or changed, depends on the needings, I like very much to help this to succeed.

Tips and advice

If you want to learn to code, you must start with a single language, learn a lot from it, then implement several project with it, change some code, improve more, and then you can say you know how to code, you can become a great Developer. When you don't take care about the language to do a project, and you can certainly do it, you are a master.

Final thoughts and next steps

To learn how to code, is a never ending process, as everything in life, when you think you reach your goal, then your eyes and mind understand that you opened a new door to continue from there or start again. You can stay for a while in the achieved position, but if you really learned something, you will cross again that door and will want to know more and more...

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