Best laguage or niche to focus on to become a freelance web developer
I am currently in graduate school for Computer Science and really loving every second of it. There is so much to learn and I want to learn it all!
But seriously, I would like to start focusing on maybe one or two languages in depth. I would like to become an expert in these fields and use my knowledge to do freelance web development work. This is my ultimate dream.
I am interested in server-side work, so any of the languages would be great to really dive into.
My question is this: what you you recommend, in light of what's in demand, what's lacking skilled professions, what's conducive for freelance work... what would recommend I focus on for my niche?
Thank you very much for your help.
To some degree, the best answer may be based on what programming languages you have already learned.
In general, though, I suspect most of the web sites out there developed by freelancers are based on PHP, and most commonly a MySQL database. (The specific database is probably not a big deal as long as its SQL-based, since SQL is pretty much SQL from DBMS to DBMS, with some minor differences.)
If you've already learned some object-oriented languages and are comfortable with that style of programming, you might find Ruby (the language) on Rails (the framework) worth a look. It's not in nearly as wide a use as PHP, but does have a strong community and the Rails framework is quite useful and well supported. (PHP has several different web frameworks available, which gives you the bonus of choice with the negative of less commonality between them.)
You can find support for PHP on almost any web host, Ruby is probably supported (or can be installed) on most Linux hosts (not sure how prevalent it is these days on Windows hosts -- but who wants to use that anyway? ).
Hey thanks for the reply. I have most experience with C++, SQL, PHP, HTML and CSS. These are also the things I like, so I'm glad to hear you say that.
For my school, I have several track options. I'm already taking Database classes, but do you think that studying Enterprise Computing, Networking or Software Engineering would be worthwhile in taking and learning about more in depth? Thanks again for your help.
For a freelance web developer, enterprise computing probably won't come much into play, but it never hurts to broaden your horizons if time is available -- who knows where you'll ultimately end up? (I was a music education major, after all. ) But as far as web development, of those three, software engineering would probably be the most useful, depending on what's covered, I guess, since to me that's a fairly ambiguous term. If it includes things about requirements analysis and application design, it might be quite useful.
Originally Posted by program_girl
But I think the best thing you can do is come up with an idea for a website and start building it. You're in college, I assume you have a lot of free time. Spend some of that time building your own applications while you can (instead of for someone else) and maybe it will earn you something big in the future. You'll learn a lot in the process also.
"Profanity is the one language all programmers know best."
That is a really good idea to start making a site now. I'm going to do that. Also, I was thinking that Java might be a good one to start on as well. Any other thoughts on this are appreciated!
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