How to Better Your English (For Foreign Speakers)
Hello! I'm newbie at Null Byte and I want tho share some of my thoughts with you guys, hope you like it. I've been inspired by 3 facts for making this: 1- The post 'How to write better code', 2- A few illegible comments at some posts, 3- I myself have never written such a long text in English, this will be my first one!
It's unquestionable that knowing how to read English these days is a primary skill if you want to become a hacker or follow a career in Information Technology. It is helpful, since the major (and the newest) content about it it's written in this language. For writing, It's important because you'll have to communicate with other people at forums such as Null Byte, and It's always a good idea to comment your code, for other people to understand it. Linus Torvalds, the creator of our dear friend Linux is Finn, but he commented his code in English, this way, it was much easier to develop it along the GNU Project. In this post, I'll show you a few tips to better your communication and understanding of English.
1. Change your habits.
Set your phone and computer language settings to English, if you haven't done this yet. Seeing few new words per day will allow you to know their meaning and get used to them. This is quite important since the major of the new words you'll learn are directly correlated with tech terms. If you are a native speaker you may find this strange, but there is a lot of people out there that use their operating systems in native language. Another tip here would be to start thinking in English, even a few thoughts per day, would increase your pool of known words.
2. Write code in English.
It would be more understandable for other people to read your code if it's written in English. Even a simple variable declaration could make your code more clean and dispense redundant comments, e.g.:
#-*- coding: utf-8 -*-
#Lê a entrada do usuário
could be simply changed to:
In my language, "Lê entrada do usuário" stands for "read user input". This change would allow you to even remove those comments. I myself write code in Portuguese for my college assignments, but when I have to clear some doubt at forums for example, I translate my code to English before posting it.
3. Watch TV shows in English.
Who haven't watched Mr. Robot yet? Don't you ever dare to watch it dubbed, if it's available in your language. If you are in a intermediate level of the language, I strongly recommend you to put the subtitles in English and get used to it. Later, try taking off those subtitles and see if you can still understand. This applies to all of your favorites shows and movies as well.
4. Don't kill the grammar.
In social networks, typos and grammatical mistakes are often common. But just because you can type quickly, post comments and messages instantly doesn't mean you should disrespect the rules of grammar. You also should pay attention to correctly punctuation of sentences, otherwise people will be obligated to guess if you are making a question or not (after struggling to understand the question itself). Try to avoid slangs as well.
Thank you for reading !