What technologies do I learn first? A question that I remember asking myself when it came to taking the first step into a career in IT. Of course, if you have an idea of where you want to sit in the development process, then that will give you a good steer in the right direction. However, if you haven’t had exposure to certain areas of software development, then you won’t know for sure if something might be better suited to you. An excellent example of this would be someone like myself.
Initially, I had only experienced back-end technologies and WinForms from a now-outdated A Level spec; it didn’t paint an accurate picture of what the industry is. Regardless of the longevity of learning VB.NET and using WinForms, I was still able to learn the fundamentals of programming, but it could’ve very quickly set a precedent.
The new-found love for web development then led to me working professionally with web and mobile-based solutions. Now that I’m more interested in the likes of Angular and Bootstrap (with a little bit of React learning on the side), back-end tech isn’t at the forefront of my mind and might not be for another while. That being said, if this article has taught us anything, it’s that you might find yourself better suited to something before you know it!
Back to the initial point, the fundamental concept of developing software hasn’t changed in those six years, but how I go about doing it has changed. My advice would be to have an initial idea of what you want to set out to become.
- If you’re aiming to do more back-end work, then delve into tech stacks you’d see commonly used in the industry. Currently, you’ll see a lot of work for Java/Spring and C#/.NET (Core).
Once you’ve set out on familiarizing yourself with what is out there, you can then start to see what path you’d like to go down. Do you keep yourself right by having a good idea about different tools (a good route for full-stack or consultancy work down the line), or do you become a specialist in one or two fields?
Sounds like a topic for another day…