April 1st, 2011, 11:32 PM
Programmer or Web Developer
I want to get into computer languages and one to choose one direction and become better in on path rather than average at both. So I have a few questions if any experienced people out there can answer:
1. Which brings in cash flow faster? (this can include jobs, learning curve, etc) which is more profitable in the long term?
2. I know the best way is hands on experience but is there any way to kinda "predict" which type I will probably favor more? I have done some tutorials on c++ and have a current job as a web dev (using drupal so not really) so I got the idea of both but not sure.
I will be doing virtually EVERYTHING on my own and will not take any classes or anything of that sort (willing to buy books though)
P.S I am doing most of this for freelance and maybe even part-time until I get my B.S in Computer Engineering
If anyone can shine any light on this question would be greatly appreciated!
If I go the web development route I will probably go HTML,CSS,PHP,AJAX,jQuery
and if I go programming route then I will probably go
C++,DirectX,Java and then probably unrealscript(unreal engine) and other engine scripts
April 2nd, 2011, 01:09 AM
Does your school offer anything related to programming that will help your degree?
April 2nd, 2011, 01:45 AM
I believe we take 2-3 classes on programming using mostly C/C++ and focusing on OOP and using algorithms to solve problems. Even though programming might be a better choice for me academic wise, I would like to make some cash aside and I won't be taking those classes for a couple of months from now and it's a pretty basic until I reach junior or senior status and get into more software engineering.
April 2nd, 2011, 08:59 AM
Game programming isn't the easiest market to get into. If you're planning to learn DirectX and Unrealscript it sounds like you're specifically targeting game programming. For regular application programming neither is needed.
In fact, there isn't really much point in learning both Java and C++. They have essentially the same uses. If you want to get into game programming then go with C++. Otherwise, just pick one and specialize in that rather than trying to learn both right away.
The basic concepts of programming languages are all the same. Once you learn them you can learn pretty much any language you want. A beginner class in C++ will help you no matter what language you ultimately end up using.
April 2nd, 2011, 12:57 PM
Ah, I see, for some reason I found C++ the most interesting and fun to get into but I just thought Web Developers might make more through freelancing, but if they make around the same for non-professional jobs then I would much prefer programming (gaming scripts was just one of the things I know in the industry)
Originally Posted by E-Oreo
This was all due to the fact that since I was that "computer guy" in my area, people have been asking me to make sites for them for around $300 or so and I was thinking "maybe I should learn the tools of the trade well and start making money for myself" but then I wanted to ask professionals if maybe programming might bring in a little more profit. (because to be honest I can problem solve and write algorithms much easier that designing sites) but I will ultimately go with the one with a better profit because this is on the side of all my curriculum studies.
Edit 1: Also I see alot more jobs for web developers than I do programmers (keep in mind freelancing) or maybe some people have good sites for programming jobs? (I know cpluplus.com, devshed.com) but then there is a heck of a lot more for web developers and was trying to get some insight on it.
April 2nd, 2011, 04:02 PM
The freelance web development market is a much bigger market than the freelance desktop application development market. Primarily because web development is super-fast compared to desktop application development. It'll probably be a lot easier to find work as a freelance web developer, because normal application development is something that is often done either in-house or contracted out to an actual company.
Also, there is really no distinction between "programmers" and "web developers". The only difference is one programs applications that run on top of an OS and the other programs applications that runs on top of a browser. The basic skills required are identical, they just use those skills for different purposes. You can write web applications in C++ if you want, and you can write desktop applications in PHP.
There is a difference between a web designer and a programmer. And in my experience, someone who is a good programmer is usually not a good web designer and vice versa. These jobs do require very different basic skills.
If programming is your thing, then don't advertise yourself as a designer. Have the client get an independent designer to create mock up images for you. You can then take those mockup images and convert them into HTML and CSS (it is better to have the programmer do the conversion than the designer, even though some designers will try).
Also, just to be clear, transitioning from web development to desktop development or desktop development to web development is certainly not a walk in the park. Learning your second programming language is at least an order of magnitude easier than learning your first though.
Comments on this post
Last edited by E-Oreo; April 2nd, 2011 at 04:07 PM.
April 2nd, 2011, 05:23 PM
Incredible answer E-Oreo! exactly what I needed to help get direction for continuation in to web developing. I definitely think I will ask them to at least create a markup of some sort for me to follow because I am indeed not a designer (nor do I think I ever will be). Thanks for the tips on what specialized skills to take in I will take that advice to heart.
and as you said it will be a easier stepping stone when I go into C++ programming and the like but I think I wanted to program because of the luring game industry, which I learned real fast that it's not so fun as it seems to be...
Thank you Oreo!
April 3rd, 2011, 11:45 AM
I think that with time web programming will be more and more relevant than desktop applications development.
Learn first xhtml, it's exactly the same as html but it's based on xml so it has a better structure and eliminates many bad practices.
April 4th, 2011, 03:38 PM
I see, but is there tutorials that start on XHTML? most require that you have at least basic knowledge of HTML and how is HTML5 linked to these three? do you even need to know or will XHTML suffice above all?
April 4th, 2011, 04:09 PM
I currently use these tutorials to get me through the processes:
CSS (htmldog.com) (people said htmldog is pretty good)
I do not know where to get good CSS3, HTML5, XHTML tutorials as I am a little skeptical of w3schools.com due to the fact that there is mixed emotions on that site (and I rather not guess what I should know and should not)
April 4th, 2011, 04:48 PM
XHTML is just a stricter version of HTML. All tags must be closed, use lowercase for tag names and attributes, etc.
Originally Posted by Crunx
If you know HTML and understand XML then you automatically get XHTML.
April 4th, 2011, 05:01 PM
You can learn how to make proper xhtml (and therefore proper html) at w3schools.com
April 10th, 2011, 06:32 PM
What do most people do as for "milestones" in the web development world? I know making an example would probably be the best bet but I should make a website for each language I learn? or what's the best way to go about it?
April 10th, 2011, 06:44 PM
There is no substitute for constructing your own site. I would create a home page with a few other pages to link to. You could download a free editor such as Notepad++ or Komodo Edit to assist with the coding.
April 11th, 2011, 12:03 AM
Start with something dynamic and simple, like a guest book. This will give you a feel for two very core concepts: dynamically forming HTML and data storage. Once you finish, post your code in the PHP forum and ask for someone to review it and give you advice on best practices. There are a lot of ways to write bad PHP code that still works, but it's easier to critique code that has already been written rather than try to explain all of them in advance.
Just make sure you use a readable and consistent format for your code, otherwise no one will bother to read it.