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Asking Questions?

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How and why you should ask questions!

23 Jun, 2020 Β· 3 min read

So, today I wanted to address the elephant in the room, "Should you ask questions as a starting developer?".

The short answer is: Hell, yes!

The long answers will be explained below.

History 101

When I started my development career, I was fortunate, and my first boss was a young guy with a start-up. He understood that the only way to get better is by asking questions and trying, failing, searching, and rebuilding.

This made me ask so many questions to him and the internet and friends.

Because of this, later on in my career. I've permanently opted to help people by becoming a mentor and tutor within companies. I love to help people become better versions of themselves and learn new things.

Who should you direct questions to?

I don't think you can ask someone the wrong question. What is the worse that can happen? Someone will say, Sorry, I can't help you with that.

So it would help if you asked questions wherever possible:

  • Ask on Twitter
  • Ask on Discord channels
  • Ask on Quora
  • Ask on StackOverflow
  • Ask your friends and family

How should you ask a question?

This is a complicated topic since every person and platform has its own set of rules on how you should ask the question. My best advice is to ask about the item as you want to receive it.

A personal favorite is asking people who know nothing about development a development-related question. Why? They come with out-of-the-box solutions. But you have to be very careful in asking the issue since they will not understand what you are talking about.

Example: You're stuck on a very technical loop inside another loop and have no idea how to fix it.

You ask your friend and explain what the loop is for in the very first section. They might say: Why do you even need x for?

That, in turn, makes you wonder what you are doing, and maybe you'll look at it with a different set of eyes.

Two sides of a question

Questions are huge on assumptions; there is side A on your side, and you know exactly what you are asking. Then there's side B, the receiver side; they might not know what you meant or have forgotten a crucial part.

Also, imagine this. Sitting across the table from your friend in the middle is a mug. Now ask: Which side is the ear on? For your friend, it might be left, while for you, it's right.

As you can see, these are all items you should consider when asking a question; the more you detail and specify, the better someone can help you get to the correct answer.

Share your answers

If you are a person asking questions, I feel you should also be the person to share your answer to that question. I see it always you find a topic with the exact problem you have, and the only response is: "Fixed it already"...

Hmm, damn, I had this same issue, so why not share what you've learned and how you solved it.

Ask me!

And last but not least, ask me your questions. I want to help people and write an article about your subject if it is something I can help with!

Thank you for reading, and let's connect!

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