programming communityWhile programming may often feel like a solitary undertaking, many of the top developers are experts at working in groups, with other programmers of varying skillets, experience, and abilities.

As a beginner, this provides a tremendous opportunity to join in on trending discussions within your area and learn from more advanced programmers.

When To Use Coding Communities

Coding communities can be great resources for the budding programmer, but unfortunately they’re of little use to someone who is in the first stages of development.

That’s because programmers tend to follow certain practices in their method of thought and the language they use to describe their programs.

The result is that communities are best used for novice programmers who already understand the basics of their language. If you don’t know how to write a simple program, you’re better off taking an introductory course or walking through a few more practice exercises before you dive into the community.

The Best Online Programming Communities

There are dozens of great communities out there. One of the best resources to use is Meetup. Many programmers use this website to post local events and hack nights.

Getting out into your city and meeting other developers face to face is a good way to make friends in the industry. Most developers go to hack nights with some project to work on, and then mix and mingle helping each other out with different problems.

Another great community to use is GitHub. GitHub is a nearly universal code management tool, and is home to thousands of open source projects.

Joining in on an open source project or topic within your area of interest is a great way to work alongside more experienced developers and see how you can apply your knowledge in real-world scenarios.

Finally, StackExchange is another great opportunity to interact with other programmers and get help on your code. This is a forum-style community in which programmers can paste in specific problems and questions they encounter. Many of the replies not simply fix the bug in the code, but explain multiple options for achieving the desired result, and why one programmer might choose a specific solution over another.

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