I’ve always been an instruction-follower.
I never questioned the adage that “the people who made it know the best way to use it,” so I of course read the instructions to every birthday toy, school assignment, and LEGO kit I owned while growing up. As a kid, my favorite websites were always the ones full of “how-to” and “do-it-yourself” articles.
Good instructions made me feel as if I could do anything. Sure, I didn’t know how to build a computer a few years ago, but with articles from How-To Geek and Tom’s Hardware at my side, I could learn which parts to look for and how to assemble them. Yes, I had no idea how to program a computer when I was a twelve-year-old, but with the DarkBASIC programming language manual in hand I could learn to get input from the keyboard, draw shapes on the screen, and make decisions based on variables. Sure, I didn’t know how to drive a car when I was 15, but with a driver’s handbook in front of me, I could learn all the laws and techniques I needed in order to pass a road test. You get the idea.
My point is this: Having actual step-by-step guides to follow enables you to confidently try new things.
So, when I began to kick around the idea of starting a blog, I naturally looked for a source of instructions on how to do so. I searched for tips about what makes a good blog, and I read up on the benefits of consistently writing articles, but mostly I looked for high-quality, step-by-step instructions that would give me the boost of confidence and accountability I would need to actually start blogging.
The resource that I found was SimpleProgrammer.com’s E-mail course on starting a blog. John Sonmez writes in an appealing, no-nonsense tone that drew me in and managed to convince me that maybe I really could do this whole blog thing. Signing up for his e-mail lessons prompted me to actually commit to the steps of buying a domain name, installing WordPress, and writing my first post. In fact, this post itself is part of the “homework” to my most recent lesson from SimpleProgrammer.
Just by following a few simple instructions, I’m well on my way to improving my communication skills, learning new programming tricks, and establishing a small reputation in the software developer arena.
That’s what I want this blog to be for you. I’m aiming to create the kind of high-quality, enjoyable instructions that will enable you to become a confident developer who flies through code edits with ease because you have excellent command over your keyboard. Stick around for the instructions.