If you’re looking for a career change and you are thinking of becoming a software engineer it is important to start learning how to code. The question is, what exactly do software developers do and what programs are best to learn in order to break into the software engineering field?
What do software developers do?
The job of a software developer is as follows:
- Analysing users’ needs and then design, test and develop software that meets those needs.
- Recommend software upgrades for existing programs and systems.
- Work together with other software developers to create specialised software.
The Top 5 Programming Languages
Here are five programming languages you should learn if you are considering a career in software development:
# 1 Swift
Swift was created by Apple and is a general-purpose language. It is built to be easy to learn but still powerful enough for professionals to use. This program was created to replace C/C++ and is used to create apps for iPhones and iPads. iOS is still a great platform to develop for and is a very good place to start.
# 2 C and C++
C and C++ have been around for a long time. There are a wide range of resources available for learning how to code using either one of these programs. C is a more general-purpose code language, while C++ is an extension to the original.
This is one of the most fundamental programming languages and is good to learn, especially if you want to start programming for operating systems or file management.
It’s also commonly used for multiplatform development as it is universally supported. It may be a little harder to learn, but there are always jobs available for programmers who know how to use C and C++.
# 4 Python
Python is considered to be one of the most well-rounded coding languages. It is used to build a vast range of web applications such as YouTube, Instagram and financial analysis tools. It has a large developer community and is very easy to use. This program is one of the best places to start and focuses s lot on code readability. It encompasses a great library support system that makes it a good starting point for projects or to scale large applications.
# 5 Java
Java is often used for back-end development but is also used for Android development. It is slightly more difficult to learn than some other programs and has a broad usage and versatility. This program is a good choice if you are thinking about getting into apps or back-end development.
Find out more about the types of programming languages available for you to learn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCAt8eEKPDc
A Career in Software Development
Software development can be an excellent career choice as it has the autonomy of good pay, flexibility and job satisfaction. These aspects lead to software engineers being happier in their jobs than those who are in other professions.
Is Software Development A Hard Job?
Becoming a software developer is not an easy job but if you spend time learning programs and practicing regularly then you will learn all that you need to know on how to become a great developer. You may even be able to get your first job without obtaining a computer science degree if you set your mind to it.
Key Skills for Software Developers
- A good mathematical aptitude.
- Excellent problem-solving skills.
- Knowledge of various programming languages.
- Accuracy and attention to detail.
- Above-average organizational and time management skills.
Technical Skills You Should Have as A Developer
Data Structures and Algorithms
This skill is needed by many companies so as to check problem-solving and coding skills. If you know how data can be organized and used to solve real-life problems, then you have the makings of a good software developer.
Source control is used to help a developer manage and store their code. Many organisations are looking for developers who are proficient in version control and are able to collaborate with other team members.
It doesn’t matter what level you are at in software development when it comes to text editors. This is an essential tool in the life of all programmers and even non-programmers using text editors.
Integrated Development Environment
Integrated development environment allows you to write, modify, compile, run and debug your code. Programmers have different choices to suit different purposes depending on the environment or language that they are working on.
This is an essential skill for developers to understand when working with databases. Software developers need to know all kinds of operations such as how to store records, create, insert, update and delete items.
A database is needed to create any kind of application. Software and application creation is impossible for any organization that does not have a database.
Software developers should know the fundamentals and mechanisms of the operating systems that they are working on. When a software developer works on a project, they are subjected to many issues ranging from operating systems, running a slow program and any other conflicting issues or blocking problems.
A software developers work is often based on the client-server mode. This can be explained as the way in which the request goes through the network to a server enabling the client to be based anywhere in the world to access the application.
An understanding of basic networking is important for developers in order to develop and support an application.
Basics of Testing
Before releasing software into the market there are tests that software and applications have to pass. This is an important step to in order to find and eliminate bugs as well as to check if the software is ready to hand over to the customer.
Software products are expected to run on multiple platforms such as Windows, Mac and Linux. These platforms allow you to write code and share it across different platforms. Developers need to create products that can be accepted by many systems due to the fact that most users are always switching to mobile devices or smartphones to use certain products and services.
Encryption and Cryptography
Security of sensitive information that protects a site from being hacked is a major concern for many businesses. A developer is expected to know about how encryption algorithms work as well as how authentication works, and cryptography methods work.
SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle)
SDLC is a step by step process that is used to develop software and ensure its quality and accuracy. If you are planning to become a software developer, you should have previous knowledge about the life cycle of software development.
There are 7 phases in the Software Development Life Cycle
- Requirement gathering and analysis
- Studying feasibility
- Designing of the software
- Implementation and Coding
- Testing the software
- Software deployment
- Maintenance of the software
Even though a developer has to do nothing with Microsoft Excel it is still an essential skill for them to help to track progress, data analysis, data quality checks, maintenance of data and project planning.
Types of Careers in Software Development
- Web developers who design and build web pages
- Computer Programmers who build computer applications by writing code
- A Database Administrator
- A Software Developer
Currently there is a worldwide shortage of software developers in the technical sector. Fortunately software development skills are no longer confined to just the tech industry and learning these skills can put you in the running for many types of jobs.