Becoming a Java Progammer?

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28 Replies - 1858 Views - Last Post: 15 March 2013 - 02:25 PM Rate Topic: ***-- 2 Votes

#1 kevinb4940  Icon User is offline

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Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:54 AM

Hey there!

I have a degree in Management but I am really looking to pursue a career in Programming.

I have a couple of questions I would be very grateful if someone could answer for me please

1)I have heard that Java is the most difficult language to learn.

2)Can you teach yourself Java or do you have to be academically trained?

3)How long does it take to become a Java Programmer?

Thanks

Kevin

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Replies To: Becoming a Java Progammer?

#2 Ryano121  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:58 AM

1. It's all relative. Some would probably say it is, but those people are in the minority. There is a good reason why Java is used as a teaching language for a lot of students.

2. Either will do the job. Although being 'properly trained' will get you the but of paper that may or may not make it easier for you to find work.

3. Indefinite. You don't magically become a Java programmer overnight. Writing good code is much different, and a lot harder and time consuming than just knowing how to program in Java. It all changes depending on your learning style etc. The problem is that a lot of people just learn the language and not actually how to program well. The latter is what gets you places.
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#3 GregBrannon  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:01 AM

Quote

1)I have heard that Java is the most difficult language to learn.

Nonsense.

Quote

2)Can you teach yourself Java or do you have to be academically trained?

Guidance from a skilled and experienced programmer will always be helpful, but one can make significant progress on one's own.

Quote

3)How long does it take to become a Java Programmer?

There's a well known essay that estimates ~10 years, but I can't find it at the moment.
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#4 kevinb4940  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:10 AM

Thanks Ryan0121

I think I would need a mentor. Someone to push and guide me.
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#5 kevinb4940  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:19 AM

Cheers Greg!

10 Years?? I definitely need a mentor.

I am from Ireland and they have an institute over here called the Open University.

I will contact them and see what they have to offer.

Thanks again

Kevin
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#6 farrell2k  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:31 AM

You can become a good programmer in 2-3 years. You can figure out the rest as you're exposed to it.
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#7 pbl  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 06:14 AM

I agree with Greg when he says 10 years but you don't need 10 years of experience to start working on the field. If it was their will be no programmers under 25 yeras old. Just that some programmers are better and more experienced than other and you have bad programmers despite their 30 yers of experience.

And Java being the most difficult language to learn is a non sense it is actually easy because you can't make memory leaks or pointer errors like in other labguage.
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#8 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 08:48 AM

View Postkevinb4940, on 04 March 2013 - 06:54 AM, said:

Hey there!

I have a degree in Management but I am really looking to pursue a career in Programming.

I have a couple of questions I would be very grateful if someone could answer for me please

1)I have heard that Java is the most difficult language to learn.

2)Can you teach yourself Java or do you have to be academically trained?

3)How long does it take to become a Java Programmer?

Thanks

Kevin



1) I have heard that as well. Never saw any reason to believe it, though.

2) You can teach yourself. Like any complex endeavor, it requires a degree of determination and initiative that many people lack, but you can teach yourself. It may be easier to get started if you have some help. If there's a university or college near you with any kind of computer science program, there will likely be an introductory course. That would probably be helpful. Or you can just get a book and do it yourself.

3) There are many milestones, so this is impossible to answer simply. It'll help to separate "Java" and "programmer", since the two are only related.
To learn the core java language, soup to nuts - you can do it in a one-semester class, if you have a good teacher and you're diligent about doing the work. You can probably learn it on your own in a similar time, again assuming you're diligent and have a good teacher (which in this case is yourself). You'd want to have about another semester's worth of work in the language to really make that stick. That's often achieved through a course called "Data Structures and Algorithms", which is also part of becoming a programmer, but really anything that requires you to solve problems by writing Java code is likely to do the work. This is just practice, making what you know about the language stick in your head. You won't write anything in this period that you'll want to keep, but everything you write here is crucial to being good with Java.
From there, either you know Java or you should really think about why you don't know Java.

To learn programming, on the other hand, is learning a sort of hybrid discipline of math, engineering, design, psychology, and voodoo. Math is crucial, not necessarily in the sense of arithmetical calculations but more generally in an ability to reason well about abstract relations. A good sense of those abstract relations, and good intuitions about them, may well be crucial to being a great programmer. Engineering, in the sense of being able to visualize the construction of a complex object. Design in the sense of being able to make a complex object which is optimized for use by its end consumer. Psychology is scattered throughout all of this.
If you have experience in management, there's some useful things you canm bring to the table there. Big projects are definitely projects that have to be managed. If you understand both sides of that, you might be very useful indeed.

Learning all of this is the stuff that makes people say things like "ten years" when they answer your question. But really, you're learning that all of your life. Don't let that stop you.
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#9 kevinb4940  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:09 AM

Wonderful answer Jon. I really enjoyed reading it.

Thanks
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#10 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:18 AM

Check out my thread Getting Better at Programming Java.
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#11 kevinb4940  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:55 AM

That's a great resource for budding programmers. Thanks
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#12 slehmann101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:37 PM

1) nonsense
2) I taught myself, and would advice you to get a book and look at online resources. Once you become proficient look at collaborating on a project with someone- you will learn a lot of tips and tricks.
3) I don't think you can put a time period on it. Actually learning java might take two or three months. But the process of how to build clean effective code could take years, i don't think anyone has really mastered it.
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#13 GregBrannon  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 04:47 PM

Here's the essay I mentioned, by Peter Norvig. It's a good read. (Maybe not as good as Jon, but pretty good.)
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#14 raghav.naganathan  Icon User is offline

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 08:57 PM

Well, I would suggest a sweet and simple technique of the 3 P's

P - Practice
P - Patience
P - Perseverance


regards,
Raghav
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#15 no2pencil  Icon User is online

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Re: Becoming a Java Progammer?

Posted 04 March 2013 - 09:15 PM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 04 March 2013 - 10:48 AM, said:

View Postkevinb4940, on 04 March 2013 - 06:54 AM, said:

1)I have heard that Java is the most difficult language to learn.

1) I have heard that as well. Never saw any reason to believe it, though.

If someone fails at programming, & gives up because they just don't get it, & Java is the only language that they attempted... then this can be true.

As for the time frame, I agree that 2 to 3 years would be a proficiency, & 10 years certainly would be an expert. At a job I worked years ago I was given a Java project despite having never coded with it before. I met the six month deadline. However it wouldn't take a huge stretch of the imagination that I probably made every beginner Java developer error that there was to make. However the code certainly fit under the 'it just works' description.

Just stick with it. The beginning is the most difficult time, but once you get over that learning curve you'll be amazed at how quickly it can go & how much fun it can be.
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