Understanding Python and Some Tips To Get Started

Python is a general-purpose coding language “set of instructions” and can be used for programming, software/web development, mathematical computations. It is a beginner-friendly language as it uses English keywords in its coding syntax and is open-source (free to use and easy to modify). It is increasingly taught in schools and undergraduate programs as it is increasingly a prerequisite in job opportunities. Python can also increase your salary especially in machine learning engineering, entry-level software developer and artificial intelligence engineer.

Employment chances increase within candidates who can code particularly in start-ups which have strict budgets and tight deadlines. They need to build all digital material swiftly to ensure a return on any investment or unfortunately may fail. If you did not follow a Computer Science, Data Science, Maths or Physics degree you may feel slightly overwhelmed right now and not know where to start. But, here’s the good news, Python has a wide supportive user community and accessible to anyone motivated. Below are some tips to get started:

  1. Start off with browsing the Python Software Foundation website where they host a free Python tutorial tailored to beginners (little or no prior programming experience). Lists of additional resources are also made available for you to navigate based on your coding exposure. Other free beginner’s resources include learnpython.org and python-guide.org

  1. Consistency by coding daily: this will ensure the learnt principles are better retained especially if you have never coded before. Favour quality over quantity, code for 20 minutes daily at first if you have issues committing and increase the timings slowly.

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3. Take notes: scientific research continues to support that taking notes through the traditional paper and pen methods is best for long-term retention. It will also give you something physical to look back to if you are searching for specific functions, instructions or steps.

4. Schedule study breaks: as with any intense learning, your brain needs time to absorb all the information and retain in. Take some breaks especially as a tiny error in code can mean that it will not run. Such errors can be minimised with experience and a fresh mind!

5. Work collaboratively: if you know of any classmates or friends who also wish to learn Python don’t hesitate to reach out to them! By working together, you will stimulate each other but also benefit from any tips/tricks the other may have! 

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