Programming is an essential skill in 2020, given the growing number of opportunities that the tech industry presents. Currently, we live in a tech-driven world and this means, there is a constant demand for the creation and maintenance of different applications. This makes programmers a valuable resource in the world of technology and app development.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary of a programmer is $84,280 per year or $40.52 per hour. This clearly shows that programmers make a comfortable living doing the work they love. So, whether you're an experienced programmer or someone who is looking to kick start your career, here are a few ways to step up your programming skills and get ahead of the curve in 2020.

Practice hard

There is no shortcut to success, so the best way to hone your programming skills is to practice hard. Take real-world problems you see around you and try to create your own application that will address them. Such a hands-on working experience will give you an idea of what problems you're likely to encounter while programming, something that online tutorials and books can't teach you.

Also, as you program more applications, it will build your confidence and can prepare you to handle complex problems in your career.

Contribute on places like GitHub

GitHub is an open-source platform that helps you to collaborate and build with other developers. It gives you an opportunity to work on a wide range of real-world applications as well. More importantly, you can learn from other programmers' code and experience, and you have a community that's ready to help you if you get stuck at any point.

There are also a ton of documents available on GitHub that you can read through to enhance your understanding of programming as well.

Read Books

Speaking of documents, one aspect that you can't afford to avoid is books. They teach you the basics of programming and how your logic should flow through the application that you're trying to build.

writer Andrew Duplessie uses Flowcode in books to explain how your logic should flow through the program and even talks about the best practices you should consider while programming an application. Such books are invaluable and help you discern the right way to program any application.

Talk to experienced programmers

Another good way to get better at programming is to talk to the experts to understand how they handle problems and what are some of the best practices they follow while coding. Get inputs from different people around the world through forums and other online platforms. Look for any meetups that happen in your city and try to attend them to meet other programmers and to build your support system.

Thus, these are some of the ways to improve your programming skills and to prepare yourself for a career in this field. There is no doubt that technology is the future and programming is an integral part of it, so make sure you're ready for the new opportunities that it is sure to present in the near future.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Feb 19, 2020 10:33 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website