How Programming Works: A Guide for Non-Programmers
Have you ever wondered how programmers create software that runs on your computer, phone or toaster? Do you want to learn the basics of programming without getting bogged down by technical jargon and complex math? If so, this blog post is for you!
In this post, I will explain how programming works in a simple and funny way. You don’t need any prior knowledge or experience to follow along. All you need is a sense of humor and curiosity.
What is Programming?
Programming is the process of telling a machine what to do using a special language that the machine can understand. A machine can be anything that has a processor and some memory, such as a computer, phone or toaster.
Each programming language has its own syntax and semantics. The syntax is the grammar and spelling of the language. Semantics is the meaning and logic of the language.
For example, in Python, one way to write an instruction to print “Hello World” on the screen is:
The syntax of this instruction is: - It starts with the word `print`, followed by an opening parenthesis `(`. - It contains a string `"Hello World"`, which is a sequence of characters enclosed by double quotes `"`. - It ends with a closing parenthesis `)`. The semantics of this instruction is: - It tells the machine to call a function named `print`, which takes one argument. - The argument is the string `"Hello World"`. - The function `print` displays the argument on the screen. A programmer writes many instructions like this to create a program. A program is a collection of instructions that perform a specific task or solve a problem. For example, a program can calculate your taxes, play music or make toast. ## How Does Programming Work? Programming works by following these steps: 1. The programmer writes the program using a text editor or an integrated development environment (IDE). A text editor is a software that allows you to type and edit text files. An IDE is a software that provides tools and features to help you write and debug programs. 2. The programmer saves the program as a file with an extension that indicates which programming language it uses. For example, `.py` for Python, `.java` for Java or `.cpp` for C++. 3. The programmer runs the program using an interpreter or a compiler. An interpreter is a software that reads and executes each instruction in the program one by one. A compiler is a software that translates the entire program into another language that the machine can understand more easily. 4. The machine executes the program according to its instructions and produces an output or an effect. For example, it can display something on the screen, play sound or turn on/off something. ## Why Learn Programming? Learning programming can be fun and rewarding for many reasons: - You can create your own software applications that do what you want them to do. - You can automate tasks that are boring or repetitive. - You can improve your logical thinking and problem-solving skills. - You can express your creativity and imagination through code. - You can join a community of programmers who share their knowledge and experience. ## How to Learn Programming? Learning programming can be challenging but not impossible if you follow these tips: - Choose a programming language that suits your goals and interests. There are many online resources that can help you decide which one to start with. - Find tutorials, books or courses that teach you the basics of your chosen language in an engaging way. - Practice writing programs regularly using exercises, projects or challenges. - Test your programs for errors and bugs using debugging tools or techniques. - Seek feedback from other programmers through online forums, blogs or social media platforms. ## Conclusion Programming is an amazing skill that anyone can learn with enough time and effort. It allows you to communicate with machines using special languages that have their own syntax and semantics. It involves writing programs that consist of instructions that perform tasks or solve problems. I hope this blog post has given you some insight into how programming works in general terms without being too technical boring😉 If you enjoyed reading this post please share it with your friends who might also be interested in learning more about programming👍