Want to learn to code. Ruby on Rails? Python? Others?

I have ZERO programming experience (save for some Apple basic in the 80's) but life situations have worked out such that I have some time on my own to spend learning some new stuff. I would really like to learn to write some basic programs/apps. I know virtually NOTHING about programming so even commonly-used jargon and technical terms just go right past me.

I began building an Arduino-powered cat feeder a few months ago and got stuck when it came time to program the board (my poor ancient computer was so old and beat to crap I couldn't even get the downloaded Arduino files to unzip and open. Ol' Shep has since made a final trip to the woodshed...). Now that I have a brand new comp with some actual power to it I can get back to the project. Getting back to it, though, has made me want to expand and develop a better understanding of programming in general. I know that Arduino has a bit of a reputation for being easy to work with for novices which is why I started there. But I'd like to be able to move into working on other non-Arduino based projects and I need to start somewhere. There are just too many languages to choose from and being such a novice, I really can't evaluate one vs another. I haven't even really started working with Arduino so I can't even compare anything else to that yet.

I'm not trying to become a professional developer; I'd really just like to be able to write a simple app or two here and there. Perhaps I don't know what I'm even asking? Thanks in advance for your help!

4 Answers

Relevance
  • Anonymous
    8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Think Python is an excellent introduction to Python and programming in general. The PDF and HTML version are free from their site...

    http://www.greenteapress.com/thinkpython/

    Or you could follow the monk if you prefer step by step guidance...

    http://pythonmonk.com

    http://rubymonk.com

  • 8 years ago

    First, there is a difference between learning how to program and learning a programming language. Once you learn how to program, it's easier to learn a programming language. It sounds like you want to learn a programming language.

    So, you want to figure out what you want to do and see which languages work best with what you want to do. Then, look for free IDEs (integrated development environments). Think of IDEs like a word processor. They make coding much easier. There are simple ones and complex ones. The best ones are ones you can use to do the work you want to do.

    Once you learn one language, picking up a another language becomes easier.

  • 8 years ago

    You should check out Coursera and Udacity for free courses on Python programming

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    if you want to find work then php owns the job market followed ruby and others , django i never ecen seen any job ads that require it :\

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.