Where do I need to start if I want to break into freelance programming?

  • Kurthead+1
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I've always been good at simple programming, but I've only done it as a hobby and it's been a long time. Recenly I've fallen in love with this woman and we plan to move in together. We both have crap jobs (she's actually my boss in fast food.) She has a kid and so do I. I want to try to break into freelance programming. I won't have a problem teaching myself different scripting languages. I just need to know where to start. I need a lot of in debth advice. I can't afford, nor do I have the time for school. I think this is my best bet. Where do I start? I would like a simpler language to start with, but ones that are still used professionaly. What do I need to learn first? For programming, web design, or whatever. All responses are appreciated.
Towards the beginning of this discussion, treat me like I'm an idiot who doesn't know jack, because I don't want to miss any critical details.

Thanks,
Bobby.
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  • Zealous
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Good entry level is web design and so lets start with the basics HTML and CSS is required so go through 100 tutorials on that and make sure you know where everything goes. After this point you wana get familiar with Javascript and get a understanding of it. Next step is either go for programming or design so either learn graphic design or MySQL next.

If you go Gfx design then once you have a respectable portfolio then you can use that for design jobs if they like your work.

If you go MySQL then once you can use a database then start adding PHP and working with database while adding JS and CSS to everything to align and style your site.

Either direction your going to need to build up a portfolio to show, no one will hire you without one. Just need to dedicate every last free minute you have if you want to get somewhere.
  • Kurthead+1
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Post 3+ Months Ago

That's an incredible, concise response perfectly answering all of my questions. Thanks! :D Do you know of a link to access the tutorials for HTML and CSS? I think I'm leaning more towards design. Will it matter if I'm operating on an older version of windows. Like...say...vista? haha. My original computer is messed up and I'm using a crappy backup.
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Once I learn I'll invest in better equipment. But, I want to be at a sturdy point in the process before investing from my limited funds.
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Well my development computer was paid for from google adsence programing having adverts on my sites that got popular so if you find something good then you never know. But just get 1 part at a time and within 3 months you will have your computer.

google the function/language which will bring up results but w3schools is a good reference guide for starting and never hurts to go to local library and get a few books. Read a dozen books and apply what it says and you can pick up a lot in a short time.

If you need free software get notepad++ it is very handy but if you need better GUI then adobe master suite will give you everything needed.

As for Vista it is not great but not good or anything, i would suggest upgrading to windows 7. i am sure if you looked in the right places you can find a copy.

Read some books, watch some youtube and apply yourself. Give it 12 months and watch what happens.
  • Kurthead+1
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks so much. One more thing you said to learn HTML and CSS. Is there a prefered order? I'm 90% sure I'm going with web design, because it seems like an easier market, so I started on HTML last night. Once I get good with it, should I learn CSS? Or will CSS be relevant throughout learning HTML? Will I be using them together?
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Post 3+ Months Ago

HTML CSS and JS all work togeather and that is front end layer

then

PHP MySQL is your back end | major functions, control panels, hard coded scripts. DO NOT again DO NOT jump to the back end if you can't do the front end well. lot more complicated but if you can get good at javascript then you can move on to the next stage. if you do it too early then your going to drive yourself insane.

Just a suggestion but this is the process for your web design certificate as well.

Now when you need help and get stuck and google is not helping then make a post and someone experienced will read your code and suggest where the problem may lay. Try and figure it out but if not that is what we are here for to give you that extra support.
  • Kurthead+1
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks a lot. The support, advice, and direction gives me confidence in this decision.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

While researching, I've noticed there are various types of HTML.

HTML
HTML+
HTML
HTML
HTML
XHTML
HTML5
XHTML5

Is there a way to learn a certain one, or do I need to learn a certain one? Is it all just the same type of html language if I just learn html? I don't understand the differences between these.

Scripting HTML is so much fun lol. It's like learn something, try it, IT WORKS!
I think it's more fun when it doesn't work at first, then you finally figure out the problem and open the page to get the expected results.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If it were me, I would just learn HTML5 (that encompasses all the other HTML doctype versions) and will basically teach you the latest way of doing things, many of them will be practically the same, except the syntax is a bit different between any of the XHTML and HTML ones.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Do any of you know if something like photoshop or idk what's out there would be helpful for detailed pictures for web pages. Is there a common program used to make pictures for web design? Or to detail pictures etc.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If he has adobe in the name then that's your program Adobe photoshop and dreamweaver will be your most used upt o date software. Or write it old skool in notepad++

none of this is going to happen over night, but dedicate at least 2-3 years and you will start getting somewhere
  • joebert
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
What do I need to learn first?


English. Attention to detail.

There's no excuse other than laziness for the spelling mistakes in your post. You obviously have a computer, and a web browser. Both give you access to spell checkers, modern web browsers typically have them built-in and inform you of mistakes immediately after the word is typed.

If you're thinking, "This is just a casual conversation, you know what I meant. Give me a break.", well, consider this.

Quote:
Towards the beginning of this discussion, treat me like I'm an idiot who doesn't know jack, because I don't want to miss any critical details.


I consider spelling a critical detail. So do the interpreters of code I work with. If I have a function named "in depth" and I attempt to use it by writing "in debth", my program crashes. I can go back and fix my mistake if the interpreter discovers it and informs me about the error, however that takes time. Time is money. I can setup a function alias to compensate for my use of "in debth" for the future, however that creates needless overhead in my program. Overhead is time, time is money.

Right now there's a focus on mobile devices, and developers are getting rich "reinventing the wheel" for them. The applications people use on these mobile devices need to be efficient so they don't drain the batteries any faster than necessary. People don't like apps that drain their battery, lock up randomly, or do any of the other annoying things caused by a programmers lack of attention to detail.



This is what I want you to do. With attention to detail fresh in your mind, I want you to study the Google Play Store. Take a look at which paid applications are popular as indicated by their download counts and pricing. This is where the attention to detail comes into play, read through the customer reviews of the popular paid applications, take note of the things customers like, and dislike about those applications. Develop an idea for your own application based on what you observe.

Next, familiarize yourself with the Android SDK. I say the Android SDK VS developing for iPhone or Windows Phone because of what you mentioned about having a "crappy job", and kids. Developer registration (needed to sell / distribute) for Google Play is only $25 at this time. The SDK will most likely run on your current computer. There are a lot of resources available online for Android development.

Basically, all you need to get started with Android is a smartphone or tablet to test your work on, your home computer to develop on, and the sense to drop enough of your frivolous activities in order to make time to learn.

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