Getting a Coding Job For Dummies

Getting a Coding Job For Dummies

by Nikhil Abraham


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Your friendly guide to getting a job in coding

Getting a Coding Job For Dummies explains how a coder works in (or out of) an organization, the key skills any job requires, the basics of the technologies a coding pro will encounter, and how to find formal or informal ways to build your skills. Plus, it paints a picture of the world a coder lives in, outlines how to build a resume to land a coding job, and so much more.

Coding is one of the most in-demand skills in today's job market, yet there seems to be an ongoing deficit of candidates qualified to take these jobs. Getting a Coding Job For Dummies provides a road map for students, post-grads, career switchers, and anyone else interested in starting a career in coding. Inside this friendly guide, you'll find the steps needed to learn the hard and soft skills of coding—and the world of programming at large. Along the way, you'll set a clear career path based on your goals and discover the resources that can best help you build your coding skills to make you a suitable job candidate.

  • Covers the breadth of job opportunities as a coder
  • Includes tips on educational resources for coders and ways to build a positive reputation
  • Shows you how to research potential employers and impress interviewers
  • Offers access to online video, articles, and sample resume templates

If you're interested in pursuing a job in coding, but don't know the best way to get there, Getting a Coding Job For Dummies is your compass!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781119050940
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 08/03/2015
Series: For Dummies Series
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 755,048
Product dimensions: 7.30(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Nikhil Abraham is a former Codecademy associate who has helped millions prepare for jobs in coding. He also helped launch ReSkillUSA, a Codecademy extension that helps people gain the skills to start coding careers. Nik wrote Coding For Dummies, and focuses on corporate coding training and seminars.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

About This Book 1

Foolish Assumptions 2

Icons Used in This Book 2

Beyond the Book 3

Where to Go from Here 3

Part I Getting a Job in Coding 5

Chapter 1 Seeing the Big Picture 5

What Is Coding? 8

Why Coding Matters: Past, Present, Future 9

Coding in the past 9

Coding today 10

Coding in the future 12

Tracking the Explosion of Coding Jobs 14

Companies Hiring Coding Professionals 15

Full-time jobs 16

Freelancing and contract jobs 18

Chapter 2 Exploring Coding Career Paths 19

Augmenting Your Existing Job 19

Creative design 20

Content and editorial 21

Human resources 22

Product management 23

Sales and marketing 24

Legal 25

Finding a New Coding Job 26

Front-end web development 27

Back-end web development 28

Mobile application development 30

Data analysis 31

Chapter 3 Working as a Coder 33

Writing Code by Using a Process 33

Researching what you want to build 35

Designing your app 36

Coding your app 38

Debugging your code 38

Compensating a Coder 39

Salary and equity 39

Benefits and perks 41

Advancement 42

Restrictions on employment 42

Joining a company versus freelancing 43

A Week in the Life of a Coder 44

Monday 44

Tuesday 44

Wednesday 45

Thursday 46

Friday 46

Chapter 4 Understanding Key Coding Concepts 47

Developing for the Front End and Back End 48

Storing Data in SQL and NoSQL Databases 50

SQL databases 50

NoSQL databases 51

Saving Your Code in a Repository 52

Optimizing Code for Search Engines 54

Part II Technologies Used When Coding 55

Chapter 5 Creating a Website 57

What Do HTML, CSS, and JavaScript Do? 57

Common HTML Tasks and Tags 60

Writing headlines 63

Organizing text in paragraphs 64

Linking to your (heart's) content 65

Adding images 66

Common CSS Tasks and Selectors 67

Setting the font size 70

Setting the color 71

Setting the font style and font weight 72

Setting the font family 72

Common JavaScript Tasks and Commands 73

Understanding JavaScript structure 74

Using semicolons, quotes, parentheses, and braces 74

Storing data with variables 75

Making decisions with if-else statements 76

Working with string and number methods 80

Alerting users and prompting for input 81

Practicing Your HTML, CSS, and JavaScript 82

Chapter 6 Programming with Ruby and Python 83

Introducing Ruby and Python 83

Coding Advanced Functionality 86

Ruby design principles and code 86

Python design principles and code 88

Choosing between Ruby and Python 90

Chapter 7 Creating Mobile Apps 93

Defining Types of Mobile Apps 93

Creating Mobile Web Apps for Any Phone 95

Coding Native Mobile Apps for iPhones and Android Devices 97

Identifying the Parts of an App 98

Chapter 8 Analyzing Big Data 101

Understanding Big Data 102

Defining big data 102

Preparing your data for analysis 103

Surveying techniques to analyze data 104

Decoding Data with R and Python 106

Using R for data analysis 107

Using Python for data analysis 107

Visualizing and Interacting with Data 109

Part III Getting your Coding Education 111

Chapter 9 Coding on Your Own 113

Assessing Your Goal, Time, and Budget 114

Choosing your goal 114

Making time to learn how to code 114

Spending money to learn how to code 115

Learning to Code Online and Offline 118

Using blogs and books 118

Learning from online websites 120

Adding support with mentors 123

Staying on Target to Achieve Your Goal 125

Pick a language, any language 125

Define a goal 126

Google is a coder's best friend 126

Zap those bugs 127

Just Ship It 128

Collect Feedback 129

Iterate on Your Code 129

Share Your Successes and Failures 130

Chapter 10 Going to Boot Camp 131

Discovering Coding Boot Camps 131

Filtering Boot Camps by Topic and Quality 134

Understanding the Coding Boot Camp Curriculum 138

Choosing the Right Boot Camp for You 142

Applying to a Coding Boot Camp 144

Preparing to Attend a Coding Boot Camp 146

Completing the prework 146

Financing your education 148

Finding a Job after a Coding Boot Camp 149

Chapter 11 Exploring Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees 151

Getting a College Degree 152

College computer science curriculum 152

Doing extracurricular activities 155

Two-year versus four-year school 156

Enrolling in an Advanced Degree Program 157

Graduate school computer science curriculum 158

Performing research 160

Interning to Build Credibility 161

Types of internship programs 161

Securing an internship 162

Chapter 12 Training on the Job 165

Taking a Work Project to the Next Level 166

Learning on the Job and After Work 167

Training on the job 168

Learning after work 169

Freelancing to Build Confidence and Skills 171

Transitioning to a New Role 172

Assessing your current role 172

Networking with developers 173

Identifying roles that match your interest and skills 174

Part IV Launching Hour Career Path 175

Chapter 13 Building Your Portfolio Site 177

Introducing Sarah Rudder's Portfolio Site 178

Sarah's career so far 178

Sarah's portfolio site, above the fold 179

The rest of Sarah's page - and site 182

Introducing Matt Rudder's Portfolio Site 185

Creating Your Own Portfolio Site 188

Chapter 14 Networking for Opportunities 191

Networking in the Real World 191

Networking in your current company 193

Networking outside your company 194

Building Your Online Network 196

Creating a Winning Resume 197

Making a print resume stand out 197

Following the rules for Linkedln 200

Chapter 15 Interviewing and Becoming a Star 203

Getting the Interview 203

Surviving Interviews 206

The phone screen 207

Before you interview 208

Acing the interview 209

Becoming a Star Employee 212

Be stellar at your core skill 213

Get more technical 214

Communicate better and earlier 215

Part V The Part of Tens 217

Chapter 16 Ten Interview Questions Decoded 219

Can You Walk Me through Your Resume? 220

What Recent Project Have Your Worked On? 220

Why Do You Want to Work Here? 221

What Feature Would You Add to or Remove from Product X? 223

What Team Conflict Have You Resolved? 224

What Is Your Ideal Company and Job? 225

What Is Your Superpower? 226

Which Three Strengths and Weaknesses Would Your Friends Use to Describe You? 226

What Do You Know to Be True that Most People Disagree With or Find Surprising? 227

What Questions Do You Have for Me? 228

Chapter 17 Ten Job Search Strategies 229

Publish Your Code 229

Blog Regularly 230

Learn New Technologies 231

Update and Refresh Your Resume 232

Review Your Public Information 232

Attend Hackathons 233

Teach Yourself a Popular API 235

Build and Release Something People Want 235

Consult to Fix a Painful Problem 237

Do a Trial Engagement 237

Chapter 18 Ten Coding Myths 239

You Must Be Good at Math 239

You Must Have Studied Engineering 240

You Can Learn Coding in a Few Weeks 241

You Need a Great Idea to Start Coding 241

Ruby Is Better than Python 242

Only College Graduates Receive Coding Offers 243

You Must Have Experience 244

Tech Companies Don't Hire Women or Minorities 245

The Highest Paying Coding Jobs Are in San Francisco 246

Your Previous Experience Isn't Relevant 247

Chapter 19 Ten Coding Job Websites 249

Part-Time and Contract Coding Jobs 249

oDesk/Elance 250

Freelancer 250

CodersClan 251

Startup Weekend 251

Full-Time Coding Jobs 252

AngelList 252

Indeed 253

Hacker News 253

Linkedln 254

Stack Overflow Careers 255

Hired 255

Talk the Talk 257

Index 265

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