I am a self-taught programmer. After a year of self-study, I learned to program well enough to land a job as a software engineer II at eBay. Once I got there, I realized I was severely under-prepared. I was overwhelmed by the amount of things I needed to know but hadn't learned yet. My journey learning to program, and my experience at my first job as a software engineer were the inspiration for this book.
This book is not just about learning to program; although you will learn to code. If you want to program professionally, it is not enough to learn to code; that is why, in addition to helping you learn to program, I also cover the rest of the things you need to know to program professionally that classes and books don't teach you. "The Self-taught Programmer" is a roadmap, a guide to take you from writing your first Python program, to passing your first technical interview. I divided the book into six sections:
1. Start to program in Python 3 and build your first program.
2. Learn Object-oriented programming and create a powerful Python program to get you hooked.
3. Learn to use tools like Git, Bash, regular expressions and databases. Then use your new coding skills to build a web scraper.
4. Study Computer Science fundamentals including computer architecture, data structures, algorithms and network programming.
5. Learn to program for production: I cover the software development process, testing, and best coding practices.
6. Finish with tips for working with a team and landing a programming job.
You CAN learn to program professionally. The path is there. Will you take it?
"I always keep a few copies of The Self-Taught Programmer around to give to anyone that comes to me for career advice."
--Robin Abrams, Board Member, HCL Technologies, FactSet Research, Lattice Semiconductor and Sierra Wireless
"I am incredibly impressed with this book."
--JoAnn Buchanan, Senior Research Associate, Allen Institute for Brain Science
"Learning to program is increasingly important in finance. Althoff's book taught me the skills I need to stay competitive."
--Derek Schaefer, Senior Finance Manager, Charles Schwab
"The Self-Taught Programmer was a pleasure to read--something I never thought I would say about a technical book."
--Melinda Sacks, Former Writer, Editor, San Jose Mercury News
From the Author
I spent one year writing The Self-Taught Programmer. It was an exciting and rewarding experience. I treated my book like a software project. After I finished writing it, I created a program to pick out all of the code examples from the book and execute them in Python to make sure all 300+ examples worked properly. Then I wrote software to add line numbers and color to every code example. Finally, I had a group of 200 new programmers "beta read" the book to identify poorly explained concepts and look for any errors my program missed.
Every paperback copy of The Self-Taught Programmer is printed in full-color. It is easier to read code when it is in color, so I was determined to print the paperback version in color instead of black and white.
I hope you learn as much reading my book as I did writing it. Best of luck with your programming!
Most helpful customer reviews
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful.
Overall a solid read for self starters!
By Michael Horton
I am a self taught (mostly) designer trying to learn a bit of programming. I found the author's writing to be easy to read but also informative. I was worried that the technical nature of the book may cause the content to go over my head but Althoff did a good job of breaking down for us beginners. His personal anecdotes and accounts of his journey made the content very relatable and helped break up the tech talk too. Overall a solid read for self starters.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful.
Best resource for self-teaching and great reference for seasoned programmers.
By Amazon Customer
This book is one of the best, if not the best, resources I have come across to use when I decided to begin teaching myself how to code. The content is clear and concisely presented in steps that gradually build on each other in a way that allows you to follow along smoothly. This book also tackles the questions I had (and even a few I didn't know I SHOULD have had) about breaking into the programming industry as a self-taught programmer. I've finished working through this book, but I still use it as a reference for when I come across code that is confusing or poorly written to break it down and figure it out. I highly recommend this book to ALL people who decide to venture out and teach themselves programming.
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful.
See all 64 customer reviews...
Perfect programming book.
By Steven Plas
For 2.99, this is one of the best three dollars that you will ever spend. This is a great book to start programming with, and for three dollars? It's a no-brainer. This books teaches you the basics of programming with python, and then expands into more advanced subjects, on top of teaching you about OOP, functional programming, ect.. Buy this book, you will not regret it.