When you start creating blockchain-based apps and projects, where do you turn? Blockchain terminology like hard forks, smart contracts, and ERC20 are not exactly friendly to new developers. The good news is that blockchain technology has opened a world of opportunity for app developers, but there’s a steep learning curve involved.
There are ways to build on the blockchain ecosystem without studying computer science for years. By learning a few basic concepts, you can get your career as a blockchain developer off to a great start.
It may have been a buzzword three years ago, but today, it’s foremost in the minds of top executives across industries. It makes sense: businesses, organizations, and individuals are exploring blockchain platforms for numerous use cases.
No wonder learning how to code blockchain platforms is on the rise – according to LinkedIn, the number of candidates interested in “blockchain development” as a skill has doubled.
If you’re one of the aspiring developers of a blockchain or want to deepen your skills and advance your career, here are 9 tips that will get you started with the basics of blockchain development and help you put up a killer portfolio.
9 Tips for Blockchain Developers to Kickstart Their Career
Be selective about your first job
It’s always tempting to find job opportunities on different job portals.
However, for a new blockchain developer, it’s best to be selective about your first job. Don’t just take any blockchain developer position that comes along — wait until you find one that will help you build a solid foundation in this new career path.
Treat the technology as a startup project with a clear goal
Developers have several tools from which they can choose when designing a blockchain system. It’s always best to pick the right tool for the job, so you’ll be able to create a robust application with minimal overhead. You need to research your options before starting development and use the right programming language for your project.
For example, if you want to create a decentralized app (DApp), Solidity would be the best choice of languages because it’s specifically designed for that purpose.
Selecting an appropriate programming language depends on how complex your contract logic is and how often data needs to be retrieved from external sources; if you’re building a simple system that requires only basic operations, then you can use Go-Ethereum or C++ (it has been reported that Ethereum plans on using C++ as its default programming language).
Get Hands-on Experience
Experience is the best teacher. Since you don’t really know anything about blockchain technology, it’s best to start with something basic and work your way up. Take an online course on Udemy (if you’re looking for recommendations, check out this list of the best courses) or enroll in a short coding bootcamp. The important thing is to actually do the assignments and learn by doing.
Read everything about blockchains and distributed ledgers that you can find. Zone in on the most relevant articles and books and read them thoroughly so that you understand everything about blockchains and how they work. Take notes as you read, so that you can reference them later if you need to. This will help you when it comes time to prepare for interviews or even coding tests.
Blockchain Meetups (online or offline) are great ways to network with other developers and learn more about the technology.
Research is key when it comes to mastering a new skill. The best way to start learning about blockchain is by reading white papers. There are so many resources out there that can help you learn more about the technology.
For example, books like “Mastering Bitcoin,” “Blockchain Revolution” and “The Truth Machine.” You can also join online communities like r/bitcoin, r/ethereum, r/ethtrader and r/icocrypto. These communities have people who are eager to help you out with any questions or difficulties you encounter in your learning journey.
Join Blockchain Developer Communities
There are several active communities where you can discuss everything about the blockchain technology. Here are just a few of them: Cryptocurrency sub-reddit, Bitcoin StackExchange, CryptoCurrency Reddit, and Blockchain Watch.
Joining these communities will help you stay up to date with the latest news and trends in the blockchain world. Moreover, if you have questions that are not discussed in these communities, you can always ask them directly to the community members in an attempt to receive an answer.
Learn the basics of blockchain technology
Understanding how blockchains work requires knowledge in both computer science and economics. A fundamental grasp of the math behind blockchain is crucial. You must also be well-versed in cryptography, including concepts such as hash functions and digital signatures. These are the building blocks upon which cryptocurrencies are built. Acquiring these foundational skills takes time and research, but it’s essential for any developer who plans on building applications for blockchain platforms.
Learn to develop and write smart contracts
If you’re trying to become a blockchain developer, then you must first familiarize yourself with writing smart contracts for the Ethereum blockchain.
Build dApps on top of existing blockchains
A better way to start your career in blockchain would be to build dApps on top of existing blockchains like Ethereum and EOS.
This will help you understand how smart contracts and dApps work, without having to worry about maintaining a blockchain network. You can build decentralized applications on both networks using tools such as Metamask or Mist on Ethereum or Scatter on EOS.