Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Valuable resources for developers

As a web developer – to stay on top of your game you need to constantly take on new challenges, often in these challenges you’ll know where you’re going and roughly how to get there but need some help along the way.

Working on the internet has some awesome benefits – the online community. here are a few valuable tips and resources to success in getting help online.

1. Know your subject – do your research – you should never say yes to a new task without at least a vaugue understanding of how to undertake it and achieve your goal and knowing that you can and WILL get there on time an in budget (even if that means using your own time to learn). Of course we all take on jobs ‘we don’t know how to do’ YET. The key is knowing roughly what you need to do.

2. If you’re stuck step one is google! Look yourself do, what you can – don’t ask me to do your job for you

3. Use the resources at hand – a great one for me has been stackoverflow primarily a javascript help forum. Another is wordpress stackexchange.

The key to getting an answer and help on these is GIVE THE PERSON HELPING YOU AN EASY LIFE, give as much information as you can without rambling and ALWAYS PROVIDE A LINK AS AN EXAMPLE – obviously provided that you can and aren’t prevented by a confidentiality agreement for a site that isn’t yet live – even in this case you can often use something like jsFiddle to provide an example .

As Jerry Maguire said ‘help me, help you, HELP ME, HELP YOU’.

4. Another great resource is twitter – if you are an active developer / designer and build up the right following and mutal respect from your peers then each others help will become invaulable.

Why do people help?
I can only really speak for myself but I am fairly sure I speak for most in saying that; we’ve all been there, we’ve all benefited from help (often by strangers) at some point and it only seems right to give some of that back to the community – not only that but, there is a certain pride in knowing you’ve helped someone else in the community, novice or pro – impressed them with your seemingly grand wisdom and confirmed to yourself your knowledge. Plus - it’s just nice to do something good!

There you go – a few quick tips – and my first blog post in a long time – hopefully the start of many more.

Ciao for now.

P.S: Yeap I do still ask for help. If I didn’t it would be because I’d stopped trying new things!

 

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