As a developer, you're constantly faced with new tech trends and tools that can either make or break your career. It's a fast-paced world, and if you want to stay relevant in this new era of emerging tech, then it's obvious you need to make sure you're staying ahead.
Technology evolves more rapidly by the year, so it's essential to stay ahead of the curve if you want to maintain your status as a professional developer.
But, with all the new tools and trends emerging in this fast-paced industry, how can you decide which path to take?
The thing that makes or breaks your developer career is CONSTANT LEARNING.
So how can you survive the next five years without becoming obsolete?
By staying curious.
You don't have to become an expert in all of them. It's practically impossible.
Rather aim to understand the basics of each of these new trends, technologies, tools, methodologies, and what-not. Then see how you can leverage them on top of what you already master.
Staying curious is key. The learning never stops.
Let's detail a bit more on what you need to get accustomed to this year and be ready for what's to come.
You should try learning a new programming language every few years. This could be the year for that.
Although this doesn't make you a better developer per se, it makes you more versatile in terms of adaptation when it comes to a certain programming language or another.
Languages come and go in popularity, so it's important to be able to at least dabble in a few.
Some of the popular ones that are worth knowing are Python, Go, Rust or Typescript.
With these, you can cover a wide range of domains like web development, mobile app development, DevOps, automation, or blockchain development.
When it comes to frameworks and tools, there's a plethora of them and it can be quite overwhelming on choosing the right ones.
But this is not a black-or-white situation. There are no right tools or wrong tools.
It strongly depends on the problem you're trying to solve as a developer.
When it comes to new tools, focus on learning what they're useful for, how they work, and how you can integrate them into your workflow. More importantly, should you integrate them into your workflow?
Just because a tool or a framework is trending, doesn't necessarily mean it's the right one for your problem.
Nonetheless, new tools and frameworks are being developed every year. Some will stick around, others will die. You need to be ready for when this happens.
Do your research beforehand.
Blockchain technology is here to stay and Web3 is going to become more and more popular in the next few years.
This new technology presents a lot of opportunities, and it can be used for a variety of purposes: from digital assets storage, to supply chain management and record-keeping, just to name a few.
As such, this year would be an ideal time to get familiar with blockchain technologies and how they work.
Bear in mind that new tools are constantly being developed, so it wouldn't hurt to get familiar with new concepts like Dapps, ICOs, DAOs, or Smart Contracts either.
Besides one of the most popular blockchain projects, Ethereum, other emerging blockchains will become more popular and might become more valuable in the upcoming years.
Projects like Elrond, Solana, or Chainlink are very promising in the problems they address and the solutions that they provide.
So it's safe to say that this year is a good time to familiarize yourself with blockchain technology and web3.
The concept of Big data is only going to become more and more popular in the next few years.
If you want to stay ahead of the curve, you'll need to start understanding how to work with large data sets.
With new tools like Google's Big Query and Amazon's Redshift, working with big data is becoming easier than ever.
What's even better is there are a lot of tools available to help you work with big data. For example, Apache Spark works with Scala and Python and can be integrated with Hadoop.
There's a big chance you're going to be working with big data one way or the other in the future. It's a good time to get familiar with it.
Machine learning is one of the most important developments in computer science these days.
The biggest trend right now is deep learning, which uses neural networks to mimic the human brain.
These are being used for tasks that range from data analysis to image recognition more efficiently, or even for self-driving cars.
Although this might not be a necessity for your day-to-day job, it's still something you should get familiar with.
It can also help to get yourself an open-source library like Tensorflow and experiment with it on your computer before using it in a project at work.
This way, it's easier to understand how things work before you start using them for something important.
Developer conferences are a great way to meet some of the more experienced programmers in your area.
They're also a great place to network and figure out what's going on in the industry.
This will ultimately make you a better developer as well since you'll be able to see how other people solve specific problems within certain languages or technologies.
There are tons of Developer-specific blogs out there that provide a ton of great information.
It's a good idea to subscribe to various Developer Blogs so you can learn new programming languages or concepts in general.
These developer blogs will surely be an enormous asset when it comes time for you to start looking for a job as well!
Another good idea is to have a couple of side projects.
Although it can be hard to find the time, starting a side project will help you stay relevant since it'll make you more aware of these new concepts, technologies, and tools.
This way, you can hone your skills and try new things as well as build up your portfolio for when it comes time to apply for developer jobs.
Remember to include these developer projects in your developer portfolio.
At the end of the day, you'll need a developer portfolio for when you start looking for developer jobs.
That's right. It's cliché, but it's still true.
Knowing how to proper use search engines can save you a ton of time when trying to solve problems.
Look up coding questions on StackOverflow and be able to understand someone else's code quick and efficient. Nothing will show off your skills better than being quick and efficient at pulling relevant information from the internet.
There's no better way to show that you're a serious Developer than by getting certified by some of the industry leaders.
AWS, Google, and other companies offer Developer-specific certification exams that can help you prove your skills to potential employers.
Certifications are also a great way to improve your resume and stand out from the competition!
There are a lot of emerging technologies that will help you solve various problems more efficiently.
But none of this will be useful if you don't understand the basics and keep an open mind.
Developers must never stop learning and keep expanding their knowledge. This is the only way to stay ahead of the curve in this ever-changing industry.
So what are you waiting for?
Go out there and learn something new today so you can become a better Developer in the future!
The learning never stops. Stay curious. You'll definitely benefit from it!