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    While using Notepad++, Firebug (with other Firefox web developer plugins), Gimp and Colorpic while modifying WordPress themes has been fun, I really want to dive into web development in a big way.

    While I’m fine sticking with Gimp and Colorpic for what they do, Notepad++ has got to go in terms of being the primary way that I manipulate code and manage my web documents and projects.

    I’m looking for a full fledged IDE, so I can really get things done in HTML and CSS, building those skills up from the beginner level they are at now to an intermediate level, while developing a beginner’s grasp of jquery, Java and PHP.

    I’ve read up a bit on PHPStorm by Jetbrains, as well as NetBeans, but I can’t really suss out what’s best for me. Free or pay, I’m looking for something that is going to provide a fast and efficient environment for learning to develop with the above languages, while not overstepping boundaries by adding crud to my code or being an unwanted crutch that stunts my growth, as I understand Dreamweaver is reputed for doing.

    I’m also compiling wish lists for books on Amazon that are broken up into three phases of learning (my goal of intermediate HTML and CSS, and beginner jquery, Java and PHP are my phase 1 that I want to have wrapped up by this fall — no later than year’s end).

    Here is my phase 1 reading list, which includes a lot of good HTML/CSS books and some beginner Javascript, jquery and PHP books with a handful of intro design books thrown in:

    Phase 2 reading list is tons of Javascript, jquery and PHP books that seem like the non-beginner’s books with some MySQL thrown into the mix:

    Phase 3 … is kind of a wild guess at this point. I’ve heard great things about Python, but I wonder if by the time I get through Phase 2, if I shouldn’t just learn C#? Maybe both?

    Please let me know if I’m missing any books or if there is redundancy in my reading list.

    I would like to learn up to at least an intermediate level Jquery, Javascript, and PHP by the end of 2015 and have mostly mastered HTML and CSS by then as well.

    I would like to have an intermediate grasp of Python and or C# by mid to late 2016, with at least a very high level of competence with Jquery, Javascript and PHP.

    Honestly, at this point I don’t understand anything outside of HTML, CSS, Jquery, Javascript and PHP all that much, so sorry if some of this sounds very off base.


    I’m looking for a full fledged IDE, so I can really get things done in HTML and CSS

    I would really like to advice against using an IDE for where you are at right now. There are lots of people on these boards who use an IDE and I think that’s just great. However, there are many who don’t… myself included and I likely never will. However, it LARGELY depends on what language you’re writing in… so keep that in mind.

    But for HTML + CSS and a bit of JS or PHP… I’d say get a great text editor that you like and that’s it. Sublime Text 2 is a perennial favorite among just about everyone. It suits the newest of n00bs and the venerable veteran.

    Another thing I’m noticing is you’re kind of all over the map on what you want to learn. I would really get super bad ass at HTML and CSS which won’t take too long. Then, I’d learn straight up Javascript… not jQuery. I’m finding that jQuery really isn’t suited to everything like most people think it is and sometimes vanilla JS is just the ticket. Also, a LOT of cool things are happening in JS right now. So, learning it will be key to your success in the future.

    As far as an all-purpose server-side language, I’d advise that you learn Python before you learn PHP… for many reason, not the least of which is the fact that I believe it to be easier… and more versatile. I don’t really use Python for web applications, but I definitely use it locally on my computer all the time. It’s the freaking bees knees for many things, but it’s not suited to all things.

    So, to recap, learn these:

    HTML, CSS, JS, Python.

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