10 Best Coding Bootcamps

Dev Bootcamp

Image via flickr

The technology industry is has become the lead earner in almost every market.  Every new product or technological advance in the past few years seems to be based in computer science. This has caused increased in computer science majors and other professionals transitioning into tech careers. One of the best ways to hone your programming skills is attending a coding bootcamp. This article will give you the information you need to find the best coding bootcamps for you.

What Is a Coding Bootcamp?

Coding Bootcamp

Image via flickr

In order to meet the high demand for skills-building training for the tech industry. Many companies have developed immersive training programs (code bootcamps) that help individuals from all backgrounds gain the skills they need to start or help their tech career. Though they might have different training formats or coursework, the best coding bootcamps’ main focus is to develop better software engineers and place them in fulfilling careers in the tech industry.

How to Prepare and What You Can Expect to Learn

Dev Bootcamp

Image via flickr

The best coding bootcamps are rigorous training courses that fully immerse you in coding for 10 plus hours a day. These camps can last several weeks or months depending on your choices. To get the most out of the camp, students should prepare themselves for the experience. Below are some quick ways to prepare so that you are not overwhelmed.

Define Your Goals 

Brush Up on Coding

Prepare Mentally 

Research the Best Coding Bootcamps 

What Will You Learn?

Coding Language

Image via pexels

The best coding bootcamps are rigorous training courses that fully immerse you in coding for 10 plus hours a day. These camps can last several weeks or months depending on your choices. To get the most out of the camp, students should prepare themselves for the experience. Below are some quick ways to prepare so that you are not overwhelmed.

Fundamentals of Programming  

Troubleshooting and Resolve Bugs 

Comfortable with Failure 

Teamwork 

10 Best Coding Bootcamps

1. Le Wagon

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

Le Wagon is an intensive, international bootcamp geared towards entrepreneurs. It is product-driven program that teaches Ruby, JavaScript, HTML & CSS, Github (among other things). Participants will master coding skills over a 450-hour, 9-week program.
After completion of coursework individuals will be able to find work in the tech industry, develop their own applications, and join an extensive alumni network.

2. App Academy

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

App Academy a full-time web development class that encompasses 12 weeks. Campers will learn the skills needed to build modern Ruby on Rails and JavaScript web applications. It also has a deferred tuition plan that allows participants to pay for the program only after they land a web development job. Of their 2,000 students, 98% of the graduates have been placed in high paying software development roles.

3. Ironhack

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

Ironhack is a global tech school that offers courses in web development and UX/UI design. They have camps that are part-time and full-time in 24 or 9-week formats (respectively) that are taught in person. Ironhack also provides career services such as resume building, job interview prep, and career fairs. Including facilitating job interviews in your local city’s tech industry.

4. General Assembly

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

General Assembly has many locations, as well as online courses in order to provide a range of full time, part-time, and self-paced options for its students. Established in early 2011, the camp also provides career coaches and various networking opportunities to help students find employment. They offer scholarships to under-represented groups in tech including: women, veterans, and low-income.

5. Bloc

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

Bloc has three options for courses; 12, 18, and 36 weeks. It focuses on students building actual applications. It was the world’s original online coding bootcamp with 1 on 1 mentorship. They provide a self-paced online bootcamp that utilizes weekly one-on-one meetings with a mentor. Bloc will also reimburse your tuition if you do not find employment within six months of completion.

6. Thinkful

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

Thinkful allows part-time and full-time engineering immersion bootcamps that last 5 to 6months. While enrolled, students will receive one-to-one mentoring, 40-plus hours of Q&A sessions, and flexible class scheduling. This program also offers tuition deferment and a job guarantee for certain programs.

7. Flatiron School

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

The immersive courses are 12 weeks for full-time courses in web and mobile development. The Flatiron School also offers a 15-week part-time option for individuals looking to change careers by giving them test driven labs and portfolio building projects. Included in the program is an access to comprehensive career services that has led to a 97% job placement rate.

8. HackerYou

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

Located in downtown Toronto, HackerYou has a full-time 9-week bootcamp in web development. Unlike other programs, they offer 10 to 1 student-instructor ratio. That combination of hands-on, project-based learning from industry leading professionals is why HackerYou is one of the best coding bootcamps. This also includes unlimited access to the twelve thousand square foot, brick and mortar learning facility.

9. The Tech Academy

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

The Tech Academy is one of the best coding bootcamps with the most flexible format. The program is not only self-paced, it also offers open-enrollment for both part-time and full-time campers. Students are allowed to mix both online or in-person classes to complete their coursework. It aims to prepare graduates for roles as junior developers and is willing to assist them in their job search.

10. Hack Reactor

  • Location
  • Courses
  • Review

This company is not limited to just part-time and full-time immersive programs. Hack Reactor also provides live, online remote bootcamp for students to attend anywhere in the world. Their immersive program totals 12 weeks, with the first 6 teaching students the fundamentals of development.

Conclusion

These bootcamps are giving individuals some of the most relevant skills of the 21st century in a highly competitive job market. To ensure your skills are up to the highest tech industry standards, you need to attend one of the best coding bootcamps you can. Hopefully this list of ten shows you how many options that potential software developers have. The best coding bootcamps should meet all your goals for career development, knowledge building, and job placement.

What Coding Language Should I Learn? How To Pick One That’s Useful For Your Career Aspirations

image source: pexels

We all remember the time we got that first taste of coding. We learned to type a few simple commands, or perhaps press a few buttons, and bam, like magic, the computer or device did exactly what we told it to do. So now, you're thinking it would be a good idea to code for a living. Congratulations! It's a great career path. But now that you know what you want to do, you're probably wondering, "What coding language should I learn?"

What Coding Language Should I Learn?

woman using her laptop

image source: pexels

Keep in mind that there is no one "right" answer to this question. The best and the brightest keyboard jockeys of Silicon Valley have been duking it out over their CPU's ever since BASIC. And yet, "what coding language should I learn" can often perplex both newbies and Microsoft veterans alike. In 2019, the hot programming languages in demand by most employers and startups appear to be Python, Java, JavaScript, PHP, Ruby, and C++ or C#.

But before we begin to look at the various languages that you can code in, there is one fundamental question that should drive your quest to learn a coding language. So rather than put the cart before the horse, let's focus on the purpose of your desire to code. It's better to first consider the purpose of your passion for coding, rather than the features of each code which you may or may not end up using depending upon your potential role.

What Will You Use It For?


Like any technology, your first question to ask when looking for a language to code in should probably be, "Why do I want to code?" Or "What do I want to use it for?" This will make the question of "What coding language should I learn" infinitely easier.

“Any fool can write code that a computer can understand. Good programmers write code that humans can understand.”
― Martin Fowler

Sometimes, new technologies dazzle and intrigue us, which is a good thing. However, the downside of the wonder of technology is that sometimes it can get so sparkly and fun that we occasionally lose sight of the purpose we intended it for. So before we ask "what coding language should I learn," let's ask why we're learning it in the first place or what our employer will want us to do with it. This will better determine where we ought to spend the bulk of our efforts and resources when venturing out to learn a new programming language.

Different Programming Languages For Different Purposes

laptop in the table

image source: pexels

Now that we've told you the major players in the coding language game, let's figure out the answer to the question, "What coding language should I learn?"

Python


The title of the language might be menacing and perhaps that was intentional by the designers of Python, but only because it's such a formidable force in the vast sea of programming languages that can help you answer the question, "What coding language should I learn." We're going to take some out of the sting out of Python here, so stay with us.

First off, colleges and universities now choose Python over their old number one programming pick, which was Java. Java remains a potent force in academia, but there's a reason Python has bested them. All those academics can't be wrong, right? In any event, Python should definitely be on your radar screen when answering the question of "What coding language should I learn."

Python is relatively easy for a beginner to pick up as compared with some of the old-school coding languages. Python makes programming easy for the creative who lack a lot of time by automating the mundane repetitive tasks nobody else wants to have to repeat over and over again.

Machine learning being the rage that it is today, perhaps herein lies one of the most potent arguments for why Python is the answer to "What coding language should I learn right now?" For science and machine learning, no coding language is hotter than Python. This means you'll have all the tools you need to make your venture a cinch. This is because of the abundance of machine learning libraries already built for this formidable snake of a coding language that has taken the rest of the field by storm.

Java And JavaScript


Java and Javascript are related but distinct coding languages. Java is primarily related to standalone applications while JavaScript has more to do with interactive workings on HTML pages. Both are handy to know, but which do you see yourself working on primarily? The answer to this question will help you better answer the question, "What coding language should I learn?" Let's take a look at the difference between Java and its cousin, JavaScript.

Java

Java, a class-based, object-oriented programming language, made a big splash when it came on the scene in 1995. The whole purpose of Java was "write once, run anywhere." In other words, it was intended by creator James Gosling to be universally compatible on any machine. That means you can write something in Java and you can run it on your Mac, your PC, your phone, your Linux system, and the like. You can see why this language remains so popular after all these years.

Java is a good choice if you want to program standalone applications that can run anywhere, any time, with minimal adjustment across machines. The downside to Java is that it may not necessarily take full advantage of the special features on any given processor or system, which can lead to slightly slower operating speeds than programs written specifically for languages tailored to a given system or platform

JavaScript

JavaScript has long been the "front-end" programming language, specifically for work within Web pages. The most popular social networks, as well as your favorite Web email program, rely on JavaScript to make all the gears turn when you're checking your inbox or searching your mail for that one email you really need to reference. JavaScript was really responsible for primarily transforming static, "do nothing" Web pages that could only "link" to other pages, and turning the Web into a more truly interactive animal; a legacy it continues to this day.

If you want to spice up your Web pages, or are just looking to incorporate basic elements of interactivity, JavaScript is the way to go. But, keep in mind, Java is the language you'll want to develop in if you're looking to go more the way of a standalone app. Both can work together, however, in impressive ways, so choose which works best for you starting out depending upon your more immediate intended use.

PHP


codes

image source: pexels

If JavaScript is such a great Web-capable language, then why bother considering PHP when asking, "What coding language should I learn?" For starters, PHP puts the magic in modern Web pages. And if you're just starting out, the great thing about PHP is that it's very beginner-friendly. It was designed to take some of the pain out of answering the question, "What coding language should I learn," by incorporating a relatively intuitive design.

One pitfall to avoid is to use an outdated tutorial. There have been quite a few versions of PHP, so you should check the latest industry resources to make sure your tutorials are up-to-date. 

The really cool thing about PHP is its flexibility. Because it's not a rigidly written language, there are no hard, fast requirements on how to code with it. This means that you have a rather total freedom to make your program function how you want it to. No wonder it's one of the top picks of programmers this year! If you like thinking out of the box, you'll be thrilled to know you can use PHP to solve problems in a myriad of different ways. It's really an engineer's dream of a programming language, and its versatility is practically limitless.

Ruby


Among the world's most sought-after programming competencies is Ruby. Like PHP, Ruby is a delight to start learning because of its incredible "beginner-friendliness." Specifically in the way of beginner friendliness, it's intended to be intuitive, reading almost as easily as the English language itself. So talking to Ruby is almost like talking to a good friend.

Ruby's greatest strength, ease of beginning, also does translate into one of its shortcomings compared to the others. This shortcoming is simply that its incredible flexibility makes it very slow. That said, however, it was designed primarily as a language for making games. You can see how this will be useful in the debugging process. Ruby allows you to run the code up until the sticking point in the code, making it easy for you to troubleshoot issues in your code and debug handily.

C# and C++


There's no denying the similarities between C# and C++, since C# is based on the familiarities of the C family of languages, including C++. The purpose of C# is to combine the amazing versatility and familiar nuances of C++ with the high productivity of Visual Basic. We'll consider them both here in answering the question, "What coding language should I learn."

C++

C++ was made primarily for low-level, platform-neutral applications, if you remember our discussion of Java earlier. Still, it was made for standalone systems in an age that predates the Internet's popularity. C++ code, when compiled, generally results in assembly language.

C#

C# is a step toward a language that more resembles Java byte code. It's designed to help developers not have to worry so much about memory management and focus on the zing of their individual program. 

Conclusion

There is no perfect coding language. Indeed, there might not even be a perfect coding language for you, which is why every veteran programmer relies upon a repertoire of code from various programming languages. The experienced programmer draws from these various coding languages as a world traveler relies upon his knowledge of different foreign languages.

That said, there may be a perfect answer to your question in terms of starting your quest for the answer to the question, "What coding language should I learn" first. That answer is the one that best aligns with your goals.

The 10 Best Laptops For Coding Success And Programming Fun

In software development, a good laptop can either make or break the job. Programming and coding require multitasking and the ability to compute millions of computations at a rapid rate. The usual consumer laptop won't stand up to the job and can be a hindrance to efficient programming.

This is where a laptop specifically designed for coding is important, and it's difficult to know which one to choose. In this article, we will answer a few common questions and provide a list of ten of the best laptops for coding to make the process easier.

Comparison Table

Product Name

Price

Apple Macbook Pro

macbook

Image by Amazon

HP 2017 15.6" Full-HD IPS UWVA

hp laptop

Image by Amazon

Apple Macbook Air

macbook air

Image by Amazon

ASUS P254OUA-XS71 P- Series Professional Laptop

asus laptop

Image by Amazon

LG Gram

lg gram

Image by Amazon

Dell Latitude E7470 Business Ultrabook

dell laptop

Image by Amazon

Microsoft Surface Pro 6

microsoft surface pro 6

Image by Amazon

Lenovo 15.6" ThinkPad E580

lenovo laptop

Image by Amazon

Acer Aspire E 15

acer laptop

Image by Amazon

Lenovo Yoga 710-115

lenovo laptop

Image by Amazon

Laptops For Coding | FAQs

1. What Is A Laptop For Coding?

Regular laptops can be used for programming, coding, and software development. However, a good, high-quality laptop is needed for coding, since using regular consumer laptops may become a significant hindrance.

2. What Are The Uses Of A Coding Laptop?

laptop coffee mug and notebook on table

Image by Negative Space via Pexels

A laptop for coding is best used when completing software development, programming, or coding. Laptops with a graphics card and powerful processors can also be used for gaming or developing gaming software.

3. What Makes A Good Coding Laptop?

A laptop is good for coding if it has at least an 8th Generation Intel i5 processor or an i7 for VR and game development. It also needs to have at least 8GB of RAM or at least 16GB of RAM for VR and game development, a high-quality SSD, a high-resolution screen with a graphics card for game development, and a comfortable keyboard. The laptop should be resistant to heating and have a sturdy build.

How We Reviewed The Best Laptops for Coding

To compile our list of the best laptops for coding, we conducted extensive testing and research, which included consulting with coders to get their opinions on what models should be on this list.

Customer satisfaction was also an important consideration while coming up with our list. We reviewed the laptops based on their features, pros versus cons, price, and availability.

Overall Price Range

laptop showing codes

Image by hitesh choudhary via Pexels

Coding laptop prices can start from around $ and reach up to around $$$. Some higher-priced models may include features such as higher RAM, more powerful processors, anti-glare screens, expandable RAM, SSDs, and graphics cards.

Whether you're looking for a higher- or lower-priced model, you will find one of the best laptops for coding for your budget and needs on this list.

What We Reviewed

  • Apple MacBook Pro
  • HP 2017 15.6" Full-HD IPS UWVA Laptop
  • Apple MacBook Air
  • ASUS P2540UA-XS71 P-Series Professional Laptop
  • LG Gram
  • Dell Latitude E7470 Business Ultrabook
  • Microsoft Surface Pro 6
  • Lenovo 15.6" ThinkPad E580
  • Acer Aspire E 15
  • Lenovo Yoga 710-15

Apple MacBook Pro

macbook

Image by Amazon

Features

First on our list of the best laptops for coding is the MacBook Pro, which has a large 15.4-inch screen with a 2,990 x 1,880 Retina display with back-lit LED, IPS, 500 wide color P3 gamut, and 500 nits brightness, ensuring that you can see coding with ease. The CPU is a powerful 6-core Intel Core i7 - i9 with 12MB cache, making it powerful enough to handle any programming software.

Apple MacBook Pro includes more than enough storage for all programming needs, with a 512GB - 4TB SSD and 16 - 32GB or RAM. For those developing gaming software or using the computer for gaming, it has an AMD Radeon PRO 540X - 560X, Intel UHD Graphics 630 card.

This laptop also comes with an improved keyboard when compared to the last MacBook that was released. It is lightweight, weighing only 4.02 pounds, and also includes Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, four Thunderbolt 3 USB jacks, and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Pros

  • Powerful processor
  • Plenty of storage
  • Great screen resolution
  • Graphics card option
  • 15.4" screen

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Reliability issues with the keyboard

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

HP 2017 15.6" Full-HD IPS UWVA

hp laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

The HP 2017 IPS UWVA is one of the more affordable options for the best laptops for coding. It has a large 15.6-inch, 1080p display, providing enough screen to make coding visible and comfortable. It uses an Intel 7th Generation i7-7500U processor.

Since this is one of the newest generations of processors, it is powerful enough to process millions of computations. It comes with a 1TB HDD, providing plenty of storage space, and has 16GB of RAM for seamless programming and multitasking.

This laptop also has a dedicated AMD Radeon R7 M440 graphics card with 4GB memory. This is complemented by integrated Intel HD Graphics 620; more than adequate for programming and coding. It runs on the Windows 10 Home 64-bit OS and includes Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities.

Pros

  • Large HD display
  • Powerful processor
  • 1TB HDD
  • 16GB RAM
  • Graphics Card

Cons

  • Customers report hard drive issues
  • May run slowly when used a long time

Where to Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Apple MacBook Air

macbook air

Image by Amazon

Features

The MacBook Air is one of the best laptops for coding when coding with Objective C or Swift. It weighs less than three pounds, making it extremely sleek and lightweight. The 13.3-inch anti-reflective screen has a maximum resolution of 2560 x 1600 with a back-lit LED, 300 nits brightness, and IPS, providing maximum visibility.

The MacBook Air is equipped with a powerful 8th generation dual-core Intel i5 processor and comes with 8GB RAM in storage. It also comes with a 128GN- 1.5TB PCle 3.0 SSD for maximum storing capabilities. It includes Intel UHD Graphics 617. The MacBook Air also includes an SD card slot and Thunderbolt 3 port USB.

Pros

  • Lightweight, sleek design
  • Good screen resolution
  • Powerful processor
  • SSD
  • Graphics card
  • Lower price than alternative MacBook

Cons

  • Less powerful than other laptops
  • Customers complain that upgrades are too expensive

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

ASUS P2540UA-XS71 P-Series Professional Laptop

asus laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

The ASUS P2540UA-XS71 P-Series Professional Laptop is a top-of-the-line laptop. It has a large 15.6-inch screen with a matte finish that protects the eyes from fatigue and strain. It has a maximum resolution of 1920 x 1800 pixels, providing high definition, and also features integrated Intel graphics for handling programming language and basic games.

It features a powerful Kaby Lake 7th generation Intel i7-7500U processor that can handle multitasking and millions of computations with ease. It provides plenty of storage with 8GB DDR4 of RAM and 256GB SSD. It can run Visual Studio, Python, C#, or any other heavy API with ease. The battery can last up to 18 hours, and it also includes a TPM security chip and a fingerprint reader to keep files safe and for secure booting.

The ergonomically designed chiclet keyboard provides enhanced productivity and comfort, while the touch-pad can handle multi-gesture inputs for better control. Last, this laptop's battery is removable, and it has an opening on the backside to upgrade the RAM easily. These features make it one of the best laptops for coding on this list.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • 15.6-inch HD screen
  • Integrated Intel graphics
  • Powerful processor
  • Plenty of storage
  • Long-lasting battery
  • Chiclet keyboard
  • Removable battery
  • RAM easily upgradable

Cons

  • A little heavily built
  • Lack of powerful gaming performance

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

LG Gram

lg gram

Image by Amazon

Features

In being lightweight and portable, the LG Gram is one of the best laptops for coding in this list. It weighs less than 2.5 pounds and features a slim body that lets you carry it anywhere without difficulty. Despite the lightweight and slim design, it comes with a large 15.6" full HD IPS LCD screen for maximum visibility.

The laptop is powered by an Intel 8th Generation i5-8250 CPU to provide ample power for programming any application. It includes large storage of 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD that allows fast execution of multiple programs seamlessly. The 72Wh lithium battery provides a life of up to 19 hours. It also has a 3.0 USB port and an HDMI port.

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • 15.6" full HP screen
  • Large storage
  • Up to 19 hours of battery life
  • USB and HDMI port

Cons

  • Lower disk space
  • No graphics card

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Dell Latitude E7470 Business Ultrabook

dell laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

Next on the list of the best laptops for coding is the Dell Latitude E7470 laptop, one of the most high-end laptops included on our list. It comes with a powerful Intel dual-core 6th Generation i106300U processor. With two cores, this CPU can operate up to 3.0 GHz, making it perfect for handling programming tasks.

The 14-inch HD screen is large enough to reduce squinting and eye strain and comes with anti-glare LCD technology to prevent eye fatigue. It does not come with a graphics card, but includes integrated Intel HD graphics, so it's perfect for programming and coding but may not be ideal for gaming.

It includes 8GB of DDR4 memory and a 256GB SSD that makes information retrieval fast and smooth. The built-in keyboard is designed for comfort throughout hours of programming use.

Pros

  • Powerful dual-core processor
  • Anti-glare LCD screen
  • Plenty of storage space
  • Comfortable keyboard

Cons

  • No graphics card
  • The screen is smaller than other models

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Microsoft Surface Pro 6

microsoft surface pro 6

Image by Amazon

Features

The Microsoft Surface Pro is both a laptop and tablet in one. This laptop is ultra-slim, weighing only 1.7 pounds, making it lightweight and portable. It comes with a 12.3-inch screen that reaches a maximum resolution of 2,736 x 1,824 pixels and includes Intel UHD Graphics 620.

It runs on a quad-core 5th generation Intel Core i5-i7, providing enough power for coding. The 8-16GB of RAM and 128-1TB SSD provide ample storage for all applications. The battery life can last all day with up to 13.5 hours of video playback. This laptop also comes with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

Pros

  • Relatively affordable
  • Quad-core processor
  • Laptop and tablet in one
  • High-resolution screen
  • Plenty of storage
  • Long-lasting battery

Cons

  • Type screen is an additional cost
  • No graphics card
  • No USB-C

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Lenovo 15.6" ThinkPad E580

lenovo laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

The performance and speed of the Lenovo Thinkpad E580 make it one of the best laptops for coding at an affordable price. It has a 15.6" full HD display with a maximum resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels for maximum visibility. The screen includes anti-glare matte technology to reduce eye fatigue and damage.

It is equipped with a powerful 8th generation Intel i7 processor that allows it to handle even Android and game coding. The hybrid storage is comprised of 16GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB SSD, allowing faster data access and booting. This laptop has a full-size, ergonomic keyboard that has the optimum key travel for maximum comfort while coding.

It also undergoes strict testing for vibration, quality, and dustproof capabilities and includes an innovative cool palm rest. It comes with Windows 10 professional 64-bit installed.

Pros

  • Powerful processor
  • 15.6" full HD display with anti-glare matte
  • Large hybrid storage
  • Cool palm rest

Cons

  • The top holds fingerprint markings easily
  • Touchpoint mouse may impede typing

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Acer Aspire E 15

acer laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

The Acer E15 is the most affordable laptop on this list, with a large 15.6" HD widescreen that has a maximum resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. It supports high performance with a powerful 8th generation Intel i5 processor. The 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD provide fast booting and application speed.

The easy-open window on the back side makes upgrading the RAM and SSD quick and easy. It also comes with the NVIDIA GeForce 150MX GPU with GDDR5 2GB of video memory, making it perfect for handling gaming applications. The 13.5-hour battery life allows for long periods of coding without plugging into a power source.

Pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Graphics card
  • Powerful processor
  • 15.6" HD screen
  • Ample storage
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Not best for gaming
  • Mediocre audio output

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

Lenovo Yoga 710-15

lenovo laptop

Image by Amazon

Features

Last but not least on this list of best laptops for coding is the Lenovo Yoga 710, which features a large 15.6" HD display with touchscreen technology. It is backlit with LED lighting, features IPS technology, and comes with Intel HD Graphics 620. It also can be flipped and folded.

It comes with a 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7200U processor that operates at 2.5GHz. One notable feature is the turbo boost, which allows the processor to reach a clock speed of 3.1GHz. The laptop comes with 8GBs of DDR4 RAM that is expandable to 16GB and 256GB SSD. The four-cell lithium polymer battery delivers an average of eight hours of battery life.

Pros

  • 15.6" HD display
  • Powerful processor
  • Turbo boost feature
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Customers report problems with screen reliability
  • No graphics card

Where To Buy

This product is available on Amazon.

The Verdict

man using macbook

Image by Startup Stock Photos via Pexels

After comparing the specifications of each of these laptops, we choose the Lenovo ThinkPad E580 as the best laptop for coding. This laptop is affordable and includes a large screen with HD resolution and anti-glare matte technology, a powerful processor, and hybrid storage.

Not only that, it includes extra features such as a cool palm rest and an ergonomic full-size keyboard with the optimum key travel for user comfort. The minor disadvantages to this laptop are far outweighed by the great features, and its affordability makes it perfect for any programmer to use.

C# Classes: Lesson 7 Serves as an Introduction

This lesson introduces you to C# Classes. We have included all the necessary aspects to provide an introduction to the topic. Our objectives with C# class are as follows:

  • Implement Constructors.
  • Know the difference between instance and static members.
  • Understand Destructors.
  • Familiarization with Class Members.

Since the beginning of this tutorial, you have been using classes. By now, you should have a sense of what a class is for and how to specify one. This lesson will build upon what you already know and introduce the various class members.

Classes are declared by using the keyword class, followed by the class name and a set of class members surrounded by curly braces. Every class has a constructor, called automatically at any time an instance of a class is created. The purpose of constructors is to initialize class members when an instance of the class is created. Constructors do not have return values and always have the same name as the class. Listing 7-1 is an example of a class.

Listing 7-1. Example C# Classes: Classes.cs
// Namespace Declaration
using System;

// helper class
class OutputClass 
{
    string myString;

    // Constructor
    public OutputClass(string inputString) 
    {
        myString = inputString;
    }

    // Instance Method
    public void printString() 
    {
        Console.WriteLine("{0}", myString);
    }

    // Destructor
    ~OutputClass() 
    {
        // Some resource cleanup routines
    }
}

// Program start class
class ExampleClass 
{
    // Main begins program execution.
    public static void Main() 
    {
        // Instance of OutputClass
        OutputClass outCl = new OutputClass("This is printed by the output class.");

        // Call Output class' method
        outCl.printString(); 
    }
}
<%--
 

Get Setup Instructions For How to Run this Program

--%>

Listing 7-1 shows two classes. The top class, OutputClass, has a constructor, instance method, and a destructor. It also has a field named myString. Notice how the OutputClass constructor is used to initialize data members of the class. In this case, the OutputClass constructor accepts a string argument, inputString. This string is copied to the class field myString.

Constructors are not mandatory, as indicated by the implementation of ExampleClass. In this case, a default constructor is provided. A default constructor is simply a constructor with no arguments. However, a constructor with no arguments is not always useful. To make default constructors more useful, you can implement them with initializers. Here is an example:

    public OutputClass() : this("Default Constructor String") { }

Imagine this constructor included in class OutputClass from Listing 7-1. An initializer follows this default constructor. The colon, “:”, marks the beginning of the initializer, followed by the this keyword. The this keyword refers to this particular object. It effectively makes a call to the constructor of the same object defined in. After the this keyword is a parameter list with a string.

The action taken by the initializer above is to invoke the OutputClass constructor that takes a string type as an argument. The initializer helps you to ensure your class fields are initialized when a class is instantiated.

The example above illustrates how a class can have multiple constructors. The specific constructor called depends on the number of parameters and the type of each parameter.

Furthermore

In C#, there are two types of class members, instance and static. Instance class members belong to a specific occurrence of a class. Every time you declare an object of a certain class, you create a new instance of that class. The ExampleClass Main() method creates an instance of the OutputClass named outCl.

You can create multiple instances of OutputClass with different names. Each of these instances is separate and stand alone. For example, if you create two OutputClass instances as follows:

    OutputClass oc1 = new OutputClass("OutputClass1");
    OutputClass oc2 = new OutputClass("OutputClass2");

You create two separate instances of OutputClass with separate myString fields and separate printString() methods. On the other hand, if aclass member is static, you can access it simply by using the syntax <classname>.<static class member>. The instance names are oc1 andoc2.

Suppose OutputClass had the following static method:

    public static void staticPrinter() 
    {
        Console.WriteLine("There is only one of me.");
    }

Then you could call that function from Main() like this:

    OutputClass.staticPrinter();

You must call static class members through their class name and not their instance name. That means that you don’t need to instantiate a class to use its static members. There is only ever one copy of a static class member.

Good use of static members is when there is a function performed, and no intermediate state is required, such as math calculations. Matter of fact, the .NET Frameworks Base Class Library includes a Math class that makes extensive use of static members.

Another type of constructor is the static constructor. Use the static constructor to initialize static fields in a class. You declare a static constructor by using the keyword static just in front of the constructor name. A static constructor is called before an instance of a class is created, before a static member is called, and before the static constructor of a derived class (covered in a later chapter). They are called only once.

Furthermore

OutputClass also has a destructor. Destructors look just like constructors, except they have a tilde, “~”, in front of them. They don’t take any parameters and do not return a value. Destructors are places where you could put the code to release any resources your class held during its lifetime. They are normally called when the C# garbage collector decides to clean your object from memory.

Note: You’ve probably noticed the use of the public modifier (an access modifier), meaning that a class member can be accessed from other classes. When used on a class, it means that the class can be accessed by DLLs outside of the Assembly (which is commonly a *.exe or *.dll file). Lesson 19: Encapsulation discusses access modifiers in more depth.

So far, the only class members you’ve seen are Fields, Methods, Constructors, and Destructors. Here is a complete list of the types of members you can have in your classes:

  • Constructors
  • Destructors
  • Fields
  • Methods
  • Properties
  • Indexers
  • Delegates
  • Events
  • Nested Classes

Those items not covered in this lesson will be covered in later lessons for C# Classes.

Final Thoughts About C# Class

In summary, you can declare the instance and static constructors. You know how to initialize class fields. When there is no need to instantiate an object, you can create static class members. You can also declare destructors for cleaning up resources.

A modifier of class is internal by default but it can be public. One should use a class keyword to declare the type class. The identifier must begin with a capitalized letter. A colon precedes the name of the class’ parent. Note that is optional. A colon precedes a comma-separated list of interfaces implemented by the class. Curly braces surround the class body.

I invite you to return for Lesson 8: Class Inheritance.

C# Generics: Introduction to Generic Collections in Lesson 20

In Lesson 02, you learned about arrays and how they allow you to add and retrieve a collection of objects. Arrays are good for many tasks, but C# v2.0 introduced a new feature called generics. Among many benefits, one of the main ones is that generics allow us to create collections that enable us to do more than an array. This lesson on C# Generics will introduce you to generic collections and how to use it. Here are the objectives for this lesson:

  • Understand how generic collections can benefit you.
  • Learn how to create and use a generic List.
  • Write code that implements a generic Dictionary.

C# Generics: What Can Generics Do For Me?

Throughout this tutorial about Generics in C#, you’ve learned about types, whether built-in (int, float, char) or custom (Shape, Customer, Account). In .NET v1.0 there were collections, such as the ArrayList for working with groups of objects.

An ArrayList is much like an array, except it could automatically grow and offer many convenience methods that arrays don’t have. The problem with ArrayList and all the other .NET v1.0 collections is that they operate on type object. Since all objects derive from the object type, you can assign anything to an ArrayList.

Furthermore

The problem with this is that you incur performance overhead converting value type objects to and from the object type and a single ArrayList could accidentally hold different types. That would cause hard to find errors at runtime because you wrote code to work with one type. Generic collections fix these problems.

A generic collection is strongly typed (type safe), meaning that you can only put one type of object into it. This eliminates type mismatches at runtime. Another benefit of type safety is that performance is better with value type objects because they don’t incur the overhead of being converted to and from type object.

With generic collections, you have the best of all worlds because they are strongly typed, like arrays. You also have the additional functionality, like ArrayList and other non-generic collections, without the problems.

Creating Generic List<T> Collections in C#

The pattern for using a List collection in C# is similar to arrays. You declare the List, populate its members, then access the members. Here’s a code example of how to use a List:

    List<int> myInts = new List<int>();

    myInts.Add(1);
    myInts.Add(2);
    myInts.Add(3);

    for (int i = 0; i < myInts.Count; i++)
    {
        Console.WriteLine("MyInts: {0}", myInts[i]);
    }

The first thing you should notice is the generic collection List<int>, referred to as List of int. If you looked in the documentation for this class, you would find it defined as List<T>, where T could be any type. If you wanted the list to work on string orCustomer objects, you could define them as List<string> or List<Customer>. They would hold the only string or Customer objects. In the example above, myInts holds only type int.

Using the Add method, you can add as many int objects to the collection as you want. This is different from arrays, which have a fixed size. The List<T> class has many more methods you can use, such as Contains, Remove and more.

Furthermore

There are two parts of the loop that you need to know about. First, the condition uses the Count property of myInts. This is another difference between collections and arrays in that an array uses a Length property for the same thing. Next, the way to read from a specific position in the List<T> collection, myInts[i], is the exact same syntax you use with arrays.

The next time you use a single-dimension array, consider using a List<T> instead. That said, be sure to let your solution fit the problem and use the best tool for the job. i.e. it’s common to work with byte[] in many places in the .NET Framework.

Working with Dictionary<TKey, TValue> Collections

Another useful generic collection is the Dictionary, which works with key/value pairs. There is a non-generic collection called a Hashtable, which does the same thing, except that it operates on type object. However, you want to avoid the non-generic collections and use their generic counterparts instead. The scenario I’ll use for this example is that you have a list of Customers that you need to work with.

It would be natural to keep track of these Customers via their CustomerID. The Dictionary example will work with instances of the following Customer class:

    public class Customer
    {
        public Customer(int id, string name)
        {
            ID = id;
            Name = name;
        }

        private int m_id;

        public int ID
        {
            get { return m_id; }
            set { m_id = value; }
        }

        private string m_name;

        public string Name
        {
            get { return m_name; }
            set { m_name = value; }
        }
    }

The Customer class above has a constructor to make it easier to initialize. It also exposes its state via public properties. It isn’t sophisticated at this point. That’s okay because its only purpose is to help you learn how to use a Dictionary collection.  The following example populates a Dictionary collection with Customer objects and then shows you how to extract entries from the Dictionary:

     Dictionary<int, Customer> customers = new Dictionary<int, Customer>();

    Customer cust1 = new Customer(1, "Cust 1");
    Customer cust2 = new Customer(2, "Cust 2");
    Customer cust3 = new Customer(3, "Cust 3");

    customers.Add(cust1.ID, cust1);
    customers.Add(cust2.ID, cust2);
    customers.Add(cust3.ID, cust3);

    foreach (KeyValuePair<int, Customer> custKeyVal in customers)
    {
        Console.WriteLine(
            "Customer ID: {0}, Name: {1}",
            custKeyVal.Key,
            custKeyVal.Value.Name);
    }

The customers variable is declared as a Dictionary<int, Customer>.  Considering that the formal declaration of Dictionary isDictionary<TKey, TValue>, the meaning of customers is that it is a Dictionary where the key is type int and the value is type Customer. Therefore, any time you add an entry to the Dictionary, you must provide the key. That is because it is also the key that you will use to extract a specified Customer from the Dictionary.

I created three Customer objects, giving each an ID and a Name. I’ll use the ID as the key and the entire Customer object as the value. You can see this in the calls to Add, where I added custX.ID as the key (first parameter), as well as adding the custX instance as the value (second parameter).

Extracting information from a Dictionary is a little bit different. Iterating through the customer’s Dictionary with a for each loop, the type returned is KeyValuePair<TKey, TValue>, where TKey is type int, and TValue is type Customer. That is because those are the types that the customer’s Dictionary is defined with.

Furthermore

Since custKeyVal is type KeyValuePair<int, Customer>, it has Key and Value properties for you to read from. In our example,custKeyVal.Key will hold the ID for the Customer instance and custKeyVal.Value will hold the whole Customer instance. The parameters in the Console.WriteLine statement demonstrates this by printing out the ID. That is obtained through the Key property, and the Name, obtained through the Name property of the Customer instance, is returned by the Value property.

The Dictionary type is handy for those situations where you need to keep track of objects via some unique identifier. For your convenience, here’s Listing 20-1, shows how both the List and Dictionary collections work.

Listing 20-1. Introduction to Using Generic Collections with an Example of the List<T> and Dictionary<TKey, TValue> Generic Collections
using System;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class Customer
{
    public Customer(int id, string name)
    {
        ID = id;
        Name = name;
    }

    private int m_id;

    public int ID
    {
        get { return m_id; }
        set { m_id = value; }
    }

    private string m_name;

    public string Name
    {
        get { return m_name; }
        set { m_name = value; }
    }
}

class Program
{
    static void Main(string[] args)
    {
        List<int> myInts = new List<int>();

        myInts.Add(1);
        myInts.Add(2);
        myInts.Add(3);

        for (int i = 0; i < myInts.Count; i++)
        {
            Console.WriteLine("MyInts: {0}", myInts[i]);
        }

        Dictionary<int, Customer> customers = new Dictionary<int, Customer>();

        Customer cust1 = new Customer(1, "Cust 1");
        Customer cust2 = new Customer(2, "Cust 2");
        Customer cust3 = new Customer(3, "Cust 3");

        customers.Add(cust1.ID, cust1);
        customers.Add(cust2.ID, cust2);
        customers.Add(cust3.ID, cust3);

        foreach (KeyValuePair<int, Customer> custKeyVal in customers)
        {
            Console.WriteLine(
                "Customer ID: {0}, Name: {1}",
                custKeyVal.Key,
                custKeyVal.Value.Name);
        }

        Console.ReadKey();
    }
}

Whenever coding with the generic collections, add a using System.Collections.Generic declaration to your file, just as in Listing 20-1.

Final Thoughts

Generic collections give you the best of both worlds with the strong typing of arrays and flexibility of non-generic collections. There are many more generic collections to choose from also, such as Stack, Queue, and SortedDictionary. Look in the System.Collections.Genericnamespace for other C# Generics collections.

The advantages of generics are that they increase the reusability of the code and are safe. The user will get compile-time errors when using a different type of data than specified in the definition. Generics also have a performance advantage due to removing the possibility of boxing and unboxing. Boxing involves converting a type to an object. Unboxing is converting the object to a type. The other definition of unboxing is unwrapping the type from the object container.

I invite you to return for Lesson 21: Anonymous Methods.