As more and more people start their programming journey, I'm finding that the number of video tutorials are increasing. That shouldn't be a surprise to anyone. Of course people will be making video tutorials showing off the basics of a cool new language, package, or feature. Heck, I might even start making video tutorials. But I'm also finding that more and more learners are solely depending on video tutorials when they start learning something new.
Now, I don't think that video tutorials are bad. I've learned a lot of really good things from them myself. But I'm always amazed at the lack of awareness, by new programmers, that written documentation even exists for whatever they are trying to use.
I use Flutter a lot in my free time, so I'll use it as an example here. Flutter has awesome documentation. Here's an example from the Color class
Being able to read and understand this form of documentation is invaluable as you progress on your development journey. In it you'll find useful constructors, parameter descriptions and even common examples!
There will be many times that all you have to learn from is a set of documentation, and being able to quickly reference it and understand the basics will help you iterate quickly, stand out in the company that you're at, and can even help you be more productive.
Now all of that being said, I want to reiterate that I think video tutorials are good! But I don't think that they replace being able to read and understand documentation. A healthy balance of both is what's needed to really thrive and grow as a developer these days.
If you're just learning your first language, or your fifth, I'd recommend taking a look through the documentation to see what you can find! You might be surprised by the little gems that are hidden away in there!
What do you think? Am I being too harsh? Let me know in the comments if you read through documentation before starting a new project, or if you jump right into video tutorials!
Thanks for reading,