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#1 2022-01-10 21:49:48

NSA_Spies_You
Member
Registered: 2022-01-10
Posts: 3

Hands on ways to practice programming to be ready for a big project?

I would like to create a website but I don't feel like I'm ready. I tried doing a project with python and flask a few years ago and I ended up stopping because things got too complex too quickly. It wasn't too difficult but I had to spend a lot of time searching around online for answers every time I got stuck. I wanted to make an advanced search for the website to find things from the database but couldn't find anywhere how to do the logic and it didn't end up being what I had in mind. And by the end everything seemed to break whenever I tried to modify anything and it became too frustrating.

I would like to know how can I practice before I try again with a different project that I have in mind until I feel ready I can do it? I've done katas from time to time but moving to a big project directly doesn't feel possible for me right now. How could I practice in a way that makes me feel more comfortable handling a big project?

Right now the first thing I've done is search around for similar projects to make sure what I want doesn't already exist. And I found there is one that implements a lot of what I want but is not the same. I thought about trying to implement that instead, looking through the commits and working on them by myself and looking his implementation when I get stuck. And when I do that for a hundred commits or so and I feel comfortable I could start with my own project.

Last edited by NSA_Spies_You (2022-01-10 22:02:32)

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#2 2022-01-10 23:31:30

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 26,161
Website

Re: Hands on ways to practice programming to be ready for a big project?

I doubt this is what you are looking for, but I suspect it's what you need:
http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/hacker-howto.html


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

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#3 2022-01-11 11:40:24

schard
Member
From: Hannover
Registered: 2016-05-06
Posts: 1,306
Website

Re: Hands on ways to practice programming to be ready for a big project?

NSA_Spies_You wrote:

I would like to create a website but I don't feel like I'm ready. I tried doing a project with python and flask a few years ago and I ended up stopping because things got too complex too quickly. It wasn't too difficult but I had to spend a lot of time searching around online for answers every time I got stuck.

Welcome to the world of software development.

NSA_Spies_You wrote:

I wanted to make an advanced search for the website to find things from the database but couldn't find anywhere how to do the logic and it didn't end up being what I had in mind. And by the end everything seemed to break whenever I tried to modify anything and it became too frustrating.

If you do not have formal education in computer science, the learning curve might be steeper. You will have to try-and-error your way to your goals and do a lot of research.
The above video jokingly expresses this. Programming is a great part of applied knowledge plus Google-Fu.

NSA_Spies_You wrote:

I would like to know how can I practice before I try again with a different project that I have in mind until I feel ready I can do it? I've done katas from time to time but moving to a big project directly doesn't feel possible for me right now. How could I practice in a way that makes me feel more comfortable handling a big project?

There are plenty of programming tutorials and online courses available.
Both free and as paid services as well as good ones and bad ones.
Do your research and try some.

NSA_Spies_You wrote:

Right now the first thing I've done is search around for similar projects to make sure what I want doesn't already exist. And I found there is one that implements a lot of what I want but is not the same. I thought about trying to implement that instead, looking through the commits and working on them by myself and looking his implementation when I get stuck. And when I do that for a hundred commits or so and I feel comfortable I could start with my own project.

Maybe a better start is to rewrite a small existing program with a narrow goal, so that you can focus on learning basic techniques rather than diving into complex software right away.
This way you can compare your results to proven software.
Also have a look at other people's projects in general and try to follow their program structures and techniques.
You'll learn a lot - both good and bad practices and styles.

Last edited by schard (2022-01-11 11:42:26)

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#4 2022-01-11 20:24:45

ayekat
Member
Registered: 2011-01-17
Posts: 1,481
Website

Re: Hands on ways to practice programming to be ready for a big project?

schard wrote:

Maybe a better start is to rewrite a small existing program with a narrow goal, so that you can focus on learning basic techniques rather than diving into complex software right away.

Second this. "Start small" would be my advice as well.

Take something simple, ideally something that solves an actual issue for you. Most importantly, it should be fun.

Some silly examples:

* A command that prints an estimate on how long your laptop battery will last based on the current power level and power consumption;
* A program that runs Conway's Game of Life in your terminal. Extended version: It runs it your root window (desktop background);
* A pacman hook that compares your local package state before and after an upgrade, to detect new orphan packages (and print a message) ("orphan" in both senses: -Qm and -Qdt);
* A command that queries your public transport provider's API (if they have one) to print you the next departures for your local bus stop on the command line.
* A simple IRC client;

Also don't be afraid to reinvent some wheel here and there; it's mostly about learning and developing your skills.
More importantly, however, you need to get a good idea of what you know and what you don't know. And to do so, you just need to try out things and test your (specific) limits.

Last edited by ayekat (2022-01-11 20:25:48)


{,META,RE}PKGBUILDSpacman-hacks (includes makemetapkg and remakepkg) │ dotfiles

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#5 2022-01-11 20:39:48

twelveeighty
Member
From: Alberta, Canada
Registered: 2011-09-04
Posts: 853

Re: Hands on ways to practice programming to be ready for a big project?

NSA_Spies_You wrote:

I had to spend a lot of time searching around online for answers every time I got stuck

Persevere! Nothing beats creating something that interacts with humans or AI from just lines of text.

I've been programming in all imaginable languages and frameworks since the mid 1980s, and if getting stuck looking for answers is not enjoyable or at least acceptable to you, then programming is not your thing. <insert complaint about Turbo Pascal in the pre-Google days here>

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