5 programming resolutions that every developer should make

January 12, 2018
3 mins

We know you are welcoming 2018 armed with resolutions. It has always been and will continue to be important for us programmers, to stay updated, challenge ourselves, and improve our skills. Don’t give into stagnation and demotivation!

To help you stay on course, we have a list of 5 simple yet effective new year resolutions that you ought to make up as a programmer.

  • Learn a new programming language
  • Work on a personal project
  • Participate in 5 challenges/hackathons
  • Contribute to open source
  •  Do good with your code

Although we recommend these as a great place to start, no one is stopping you from customizing the list as you see fit to stay vibrant.

1. Learn a new programming language

Instead of asking “why?” ask “why not?.”

Here is a fact: More than 72% job requirements ask for more than 3 programming languages.

This makes it quite clear that becoming a “master of many” is crucial to stay relevant today, as an entire software package is rarely written using just one language anymore.  The next obvious question is “Which language do I learn?” The answer is entirely up to you.

If you are a beginner, check out this list of 15 best computer programming languages for beginners. Or, if you already have expertise in a primary language, our recommendation is to try an alternative language type. In other words, if your primary language is procedural [Java, C#, Python, etc.], pick up a functional programming language [R, Haskell, Lisp, etc.] that appeals to you. On the other hand, if the language you know is a functional one, it is high time that you picked up a procedural language.

2. Work on a personal project

We believe there is no need to explain the “Why, how, or which” part of this resolution. But we would just like to remind you that if you are going to keep coding for someone else, you are going to keep doing only that. We know, and, yeah, you know it too that someday you will regret not working on that project of yours and making it open source.

3. Participate in 5 Challenges/Hackathons

There has always been a notion that competitive programming challenges or hackathons do not relate to programming at work. They do, however, enhance your skills as a programmer in their own sweet way. While competitive programming improves your coding efficiency, speed and memory, a hackathon can give you exposure to working like a product owner. There are plenty of other merits too. You can find them here in this list of benefits of participating in competitive programming challenge  and hackathons. To hone your coding skills, take part in both online and offline formats for the obvious benefits and the variety they offer.

4. Contribute to open source

This, we believe, is already a part of your new year resolutions year after year. If not, add it to your list today and you will thank us later. The more pressing issue here is how to start if you are a beginner. We recommend that you start fixing bugs and improving relatively simple features first. To learn more, here is a simple guide on how to start with open source.

5. Do good with your code

Lastly, resolve to lend your technical skills to make the world a better place. You can do your bit to give back to the society by contributing your ideas and coding skills to solve a pain point faced by the masses. This is easier said than done.

The issue here is “How to find good social impact projects to work on?” This is where we come into the picture. This year at HackerEarth, we have taken a pledge to make a small contribution to improve the lives of people out there in small steps. We intend to find high social impact projects and bring them to you in the form of hackathons and live projects. Simple technology-based solutions have the power to transform the lives of many. You can get started, by participating in social hackathons like the Rural Development Hackathon.

Did we miss anything? Let us know what your new year resolution is in the comments below.

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