So you want to be a programmer? Or more importantly you want to be a GOOD programmer! I'm sure there must be lots of articles out there on the Internet about what makes a good programmer. But I thought.. what the heck, let me put in my 2 cents as well.
This is all my opinion only, and it's definetly not THE final word on what skills and attributes a good programmer should have. So let's start with the most important attribute every programmer should have :-
Just like any other job, and most importantly like any other occupation where something is created out of nothing. You must be PASSIONATE about what you're doing. If you don't derive any amount of satisfaction or joy from your job, you stop caring about doing your best and start over looking solutions that are staring at you in your face.
LEARN TO READ
You might be wondering of course I can read, how else can I be reading this? I'm referring to the ability to read and understand the error messages that are throw out by the compiler or the runtime that your programming language uses. I've been in countless situations where I'm asked what is wrong with a person's code when the solution to their problems is right there staring at them in the face. Take an effort to read the error messages properly and then when you solve the problem remember the situation that caused the error in the first place so you can avoid making the same mistake again.
It's OK To Make Mistakes
Nobody's perfect, it's ok if you made a mistake while your coding. Don't be afraid to make mistakes, but always learn from them so you don't make the same mistake again. I have seen people who are just plain worried about hitting the RUN button cause they're afraid that their code wouldn't work. This rule only applies if you're not doing stuff on a production system when important client data is stored, in such cases IT'S DEFINETLY NOT OK TO MAKE MISTAKES!
LEARN TO DEBUG
I'm always amazed at the fact that they just don't seem to teach students how to use the various debugging tools which are at their disposal. Most of the freshies I've soon have never set a breakpoint, or used a debugging window before. If you're studying programming right now, do yourself a favor and go Google Setting A Breakpoint. Once you know how to debug, you're on your way to being a better programmer.
And that's it for now, stay tuned for more on this TAG!