What's the best programming language for Nigerian Entrepreneurs?

by on Mar 10, 2017 - 9 min read
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Choosing a programming language as an entrepreneur can be quite a challenging task, especially as a Nigerian entrepreneur with very limited resources and racing agaisnt time. I will attempt to make this as simple and straightforward as possible. 

Well, many will argue that there is actually no wrong choice here and I do actually agree to a level, it's just that given the parameters you might be operating in and given the assumption that this is for someone hoping to learn a language to be able to actually make something that really works and have the opportunity to have an impact on the lives of people. 

WHY HTML is the new cool prototyping language.

Consumption Device
For every great engineer, you start with a problem and look at the resources available to you. I would love to encourage entrpereneurs to take a look at the problem they are trying to solve and the end users of their solution. Pay close attention to what is available to the end users and how they will interact with your solution. So you will need to understand if it's going to inolve a hardware or would it be entirely software.

Development Device
Next, you will need to take a look at what you have as an entrepreneur who is trying to learn a programming language. I would recommend that it does not always make sense to purchase the newest and latest computer in other to get things done. Nowadays, most personal computing devices are decent enough to handle simple to complex computing programs that you may want to run on them.

Back end
Back ends are usually the layer that the front end(user interface that your user interacts with) interacts with to either permanently persist application data and other stored values. It usally involveds the DataStore, which might be a form of a relational database or the recent non-relational databases. A lot of the heavy computational logic that might involve huge data crunching and things like that will require a reliable, stable and sturdy back end to do the processing. The good news here is that there are platforms such as Firebase and many more that can actually handle back end tasks that will even let you get things started for free and scale your services as you grow.

Firebase is a platform that helps you quickly develop high-quality apps, grow your user base, and earn more money by reducing your cost.

Front end
This is the interaction point between your product and the intended user. And, depending, on the intended user's device which mostly would prolly be a mobile computing device, the front end task has become easier than it used to be. Most of these devices have a browser or capability to run some sort of ability to access and display web standard data. Even, if you are working with embedded hardware devices like the Arduino or Raspberry Pi, there are still ways to run full functioning standard web browsers.

The Raspberry Pi is a credit-card-sized computer that plugs into your TV and a keyboard. It is a capable little computer which can be used in electronics projects, and for many of the things that your desktop PC does, like spreadsheets, word processing, browsing the internet, and playing games.

Arduino is an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software. Arduino boards are able to read inputs - light on a sensor, a finger on a button, or a Twitter message - and turn it into an output - activating a motor, turning on an LED, publishing something online.

The latest HTML5 has proven to be a rather easy but robust programming langugage. It is easier to learn because of the vast resource and support out there. HTML is the default language understood by mordern browsers, so it naturally is an easy go to tool for prototyping your ideas and getting your proof of concept out there in no time. I will also recommend adding the following frameworks to your learning to make things a lot easier for you.


Bootstrap is a free and open-source front-end web framework for designing websites and web applications. It contains HTML- and CSS-based design templates for typography, forms, buttons, navigation and other interface components, as well as optional JavaScript extensions.

jQuery is a fast and concise JavaScript Library created by John Resig in 2006 with a nice motto − Write less, do more. jQuery simplifies HTML document traversing, event handling, animating, and Ajax interactions for rapid web development.


Here are more reasons to learn HTML

Beginner Friendliness

Easy to Get Started with
Basic HTML and CSS are very easy to get started with as they are very simple. Most beginners who are aspiring to become web developers will first start out with HTML/CSS to get a taste of what it's like to program. HTML/CSS are not programming languages, per se, but they will introduce you the concept of programming syntaxes, or rules. To build HTML5 apps, you also need to have a decent understanding of how JavaScript works. JavaScript is also pretty easy to get started with for beginners.

Fun Tools
There are various neat libraries and tools you can use to easily build hybrid mobile apps or browser-based games, and they're often designed to be very beginner-friendly.

Difficult to Master
HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript are difficult to master. JavaScript is complex, and these web technologies move at a rather fast rate, so it may be hard to keep up with. Nonetheless, if your primary concern is to build some simple, small, project, this should not be of concern.

Scalability shouldn't be an issue for personal projects, but it is generally not as recommended for professional projects.

Currently you can only build simple browser games and simple hybrid apps using HTML5, and this is partially to the fact that many libraries rely on DOM, which usually have performance issues that limit the complexity or size of the game.

It is likely possible to build more complex browser based games in the future using Canvas, though this will not be beginner friendly.

As you step into the programming world, you'll soon understand how vital support is, as the developer community is all about giving and receiving help. The larger a community, the more likely you'd get help and the more people will be building useful tools to ease the process of development.

HTML is the 8th Most-used Tag on StackOverflow: HTML
StackOverflow is a programming Q&A site you will no doubt become intimate with as a coding beginner. HTML is the 8th most-used tag, which means there are a lot of questions with potential answers for your problem. In addition, CSS is the 12th most used tag.

Over 575k CSS Projects on GitHub
The more useful projects there are, the more likely someone has already built something you need and built it well, which will greatly speed up your development process. Over 350 CSS GitHub Projects have 500+ stars. In addition, CodePen is also a cool place to get inspiration or CSS Tips.

Career Opportunities
If you know HTML5 and CSS3 well, there's plenty of opportunity to find a job as a designer, especially since you'd have the advantage of being able to code what you've designed, reducing a lot of back and forth and also allowing you to have control over your own work.

As a skill, HTML5 and CSS3 is also useful for online marketers, since you won't have to always get company developers to help you fix something like the email template design if you can do it yourself.

If you'd like to consider becoming a front-end web developer or UX engineer, you must learn HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript well.

Web applications cannot function without HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Web technologies as well as browsers will only become more advanced in the future, especially with Google's Polymer 1.0 out now. 'Nuff said.



Free HTML5 Courses:

1. HTML5 & CSS3 Fundamentals: Development for Absolute Beginners (Channel9)
This excellent free resource covers the fundamentals of HTML5 and CSS3 styling. Each concept is conviently broken down into it’s own video and the instructor is easy to understand and follow.

2. Developing in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3 Jump Start (Microsoft Virtual Academy)
This free course from taught by two expert technical evangelists at Microsoft provides an accelerated introduction to HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScrip. It focuses on web development basics like how to use programming logic, define and use variables, perform looping and branching, develop user interfaces, capture and validate user input, store data, and create well-structured applications. The only catch is it taught using Microsoft’s Visual Studio 2012 running on Windows 8 but it includes an exam and certification.

3. HTML5 Game Development (Udacity)
In this online course you will learn the fundamentals of HTML5 by building a web-based game. It requires knowledge of HTML and Javascript but if you aren’t familiar with them, a crash course is provided for you to get up-to-speed. The course is taught by two instructors from Google who are working on the Chrome development team.

4. Startup Engineering (Coursera)
This MOOC (Massively Open Online Course) from Stanford University focuses on giving you the development skills you need to launch a web/mobile startup. Part of the course involves building an HTML5 mobile app. If you want to learn more than simply HTML5 devleopment, this course is highly recommended. The most recent session started on June 17th but you can still join and do the course work.

5 Computer Science E-76: Building Mobile Applications (Harvard)
An excellent course on mobile development that covers iOS development, Android Development and 5 lectures on HTML5 mobile development. Includes slides, source code and the original video lectures from the Harvard class.

6. HTML5 Introduction (The New Boston)
I’m a huge fan of educational tutorials from The New Boston. They are easy to follow and professionally done. They have 53 videos and over 6 hours of content dedicated to helping you learn HTML5.

7. HTML5 Video Course (AdEducation)
This course is available on YouTube. It features 18 videos and 2.5 hours of content covering the fundamentals of HTML5 Development.

8. HTML5 Intro ( P2PU)
This course from Mozilla School of Webcraft covers the basics of HTML5 development on the free P2PU platform.




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