Web Development Tools that all UI Students Should Learn

The only thing anyone needs to dominate the Internet these days is a computer that is hooked up to the Internet. If people can summon the willpower to not look at YouTube or Reddit all day, they could learn to code. According to Glassdoor, the national average Web Developer salary is $USD 86,832. Whether you’re a project manager, web developer or a beginner, taking some Web Development courses will make your team more relevant and better able to compete in an ever-changing landscape.

Your operating system doesn’t matter. Unless you want to build an iPhone app, then you need Mac OS X. You can develop for Android on Mac OS X, Windows or Linux. It doesn’t matter what system you use. Just start building something.

First thing to remember is that not all browsers are created equal. If you’re reading this on Internet Explorer, stop what you’re doing and download Chrome or Firefox. Chrome and Firefox are fast and have great developer tools. They also have lots of useful add-ons to help you out.

Open Chrome and just inspect a page. With developer tools, the front-end code that is creating the page is visible. Anyone can see the HTML and CSS. We can even change things in real time and copy and paste code.

Secondly, you can’t write code with word processors. You need a text editor for PC, Sublime or Notepad++. If you use a Mac, some good ones are Sublime, Textmate, MacVim and others. Sublime is hot in the developer community. Programmers will spend more time thinking than writing code. So simply pick one and get on with it.

After getting a browser and text editor, you’ll need two more things. A way to run on your computer, knows as local development, and a way to get it up to your server. Running your code locally simply means running it on your computer.

In order to set this up, you can download WampServer for Windows MAMP for Mac. The “Amp” stands for Apache, MySQL and PHP. These programs set up the server stack on your computer. Then you put the code in the correct directory and your computer acts as a server.

Now your site can run without being connected to the Internet. You can use it to test things before moving it to your live site. In order to move your code, use an FTP program. Cyberduck is a recommended open source client for FTP, SFTP, WebDAV and also cloud storage. It works on both Mac and PC. This program will give you an interface to move files to your server.

Once you’re ready to start a website, you need to get a domain name so people can get to it. In order to get a domain name, you have to buy one from a domain registrar and pay a yearly fee to keep it. GoDaddy is a registrar you might know from their Superbowl commercials. However they backed SOPA which would have killed Net Nuetrality. However, there are other domain registrars like Namecheap, Hover, and Name who offer better deals and packages.

After getting a domain name, decide if you want shared hosting or your own server. If you’re just starting out, shared hosting is fine. It’s cheaper and everything is set up. If you want your own server, you could use a VPS (Virtual Private Server). It’s your own to tweak with different stacks. The server’s the limit.