You’ve come up with a great coding project idea, and you’ve planned it as well as you can. If you’ve planned your project correctly, you should have an outline of how your code is going to be structured. Now you’re ready to turn your plan into a reality by writing that code!
But wait – that’s not all you need to do. There’s much more to building a coding project than just writing the code. You also need to test your code to make sure it works smoothly, the way you want it. And when it doesn’t, you’ll need to do research to find out why. Plus, there are plenty of handy tools and advanced techniques that you have the opportunity to try.
Last but not least, you’ll most likely want to deploy your project – to the Internet, the App Store, or whatever the case may be. So let’s find out how to do all this!
Enlist the Help of Tools
Once you’ve written the first ‘draft’ of your code, it’s highly likely that you’ll have run into some difficulties. Perhaps your text editor wasn’t as powerful as you hoped it would be, or the visual design of your project wasn’t that great, or you wanted to share your project with someone else but you’ve had trouble doing so.
Luckily, there are many handy coding tools here to make things easier. Some examples are GitHub (a way to share your project), Twitter Bootstrap (a design framework for websites), and of course the many text editors available to you.
Enlisting the help of tools, and using the right tool for the right job, will speed up the construction of your project. Find out more about coding tools…
Test and Debug Your Code
Testing your software is important for verifying that your code works as expected. You should make a list of all the different functionalities in your software, and then test that they all run smoothly. Chances are, not all of them will. Congratulations, you’ve created your first bug!
Bugs are totally normal – even for the most experienced of coders. So you’re going to have to get used to running into them and subsequently debugging them. Debugging simply means correcting the code that’s causing the bug so that it works the way it should. In some cases, it’s as simple as a spelling mistake (also called a syntax error).
But in other cases, it can be very difficult to identify the cause of your bug and solve it. When this happens, don’t spend hours staring blankly at your screen – get help!
If you’re stuck trying to fix a bug, or you just can’t figure out how to write something, there are resources available to help you out. Stack Overflow, for example, is a popular Q&A forum where you can post a question about your code.
You may also want to refer to documentation to verify your syntax or usage of a certain feature or function in your code. For more information, make sure you read this full list of coding help resources.
So you’ve written your code and eliminated all the bugs. Now you’re ready to put the finishing touches on your project. A good thing to do is refactor your code, which means re-write it to make it shorter while maintaining the same functionality. This will reduce your file size.
While you’re doing this, you might also want to think about using advanced coding concepts like code commenting and software design.
Deploy (or Share) Your Project
Happy with your finished product? Then it’s time for the final stage – deployment. Deployment refers to the process of releasing software and making it available for use. For example, if you’ve created an iPhone app, you’ll want to deploy it to the App Store.
For a web application, you might want to think about using Heroku. Heroku is a good alternative to a server, because all the maintenance and management is done for you, and you can start for free. Learn more about Heroku…
If you don’t want to deploy your project, why not share it? You could do so on GitHub, an online coding community, or just share it with your friends.
Whether you deploy your project, share your source code or something else, make sure you put your project to good use. After all, it’s now your asset. Don’t let it sit on your hard drive going to waste!
Recommended Training – Treehouse
Although this site recommends various training services, our top recommendation is Treehouse.
Treehouse is an online training service that teaches web design, web development and app development with videos, quizzes and interactive coding exercises.
Treehouse's mission is to bring technology education to those who can't get it, and is committed to helping its students find jobs. If you're looking to turn coding into your career, you should consider Treehouse.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.