Cardano blockchain development is moving fast and creating many opportunities for developers. In recent months, it has also become much more user-friendly as several Cardano developer tools are making it easier and faster to do so.
This has opened the way for many developers from other fields to jump into Cardano and its ecosystem. The rewards for doing so are quite substantial and the career change could open opportunities for people from all over the world.
Of course, moving to a new field of development and ecosystem can be daunting. The purpose of this blog is to give some advice and tips on how to ease the transition and start a successful Cardano blockchain developer career.
1. Start early with Cardano development
The best way to start is to do so from the get-go. It may seem that learning about distributed systems, blockchain, and finally Haskell is the best path to enter the Cardano ecosystem. But that road will be detrimental. By the time you think you are ready to jump into Cardano, the network will be different as it’s constantly developing and advancing very fast.
A good way might be to start directly exploring Cardano development. Anything else you need like Haskell, blockchain knowledge, and the rest you can pick up along the way. You can then be immersed from the start into the Cardano ecosystem and move faster to the final goal of blockchain development.
Experiment and start today. Get to the point where you are building stuff.
When you reach a stage where you start seeing where you need to improve, look at building the base and strength required to jump to the next level through professional certifications and strong exposure.
2. Join the Cardano community
The journey to becoming a Cardano blockchain developer doesn’t have to be a lonesome one. The Cardano community is very large and many are in different stages on the path to becoming developers. There is a wealth of knowledge and experience that can come from interacting with the community.
There are many places where one can find these communities:
- EMURGO Academy Community Telegram Group
- Cardano Spot
- Cardano town halls across the world
- Cardano community projects
These are just to name a few. There are many other places where you can find like-minded people and those similarly looking to enter the Cardano ecosystem. The advantage of getting to know and interacting with others in the ecosystem is very valuable in the long term.
3. Choose a personal project
Once you know the Cardano landscape and where in smart contract development you want to enter, the next stage is picking a Cardano dApp project.
It could be writing a small smart contract that has some functionality, integrating a wallet on a website, or writing off-chain code for a validator. The project has to reflect your interest and serve as a goal of the type of development you want to enter.
Cardano is a global blockchain that opens opportunities to people from all regions of the world. The switch to this new career path can seem intimidating at first, but also very rewarding. The switch doesn’t have to be abrupt and instead can start with small steps.
4. Join small blockchain projects
As a follow-up to the first advice, joining projects early on is also important. Even without being proficient in Cardano smart contract development, projects need all types of people. Many are looking for web developers, back-end devs., and any help in general.
The best place to look for these small projects is on Catalyst.
Project Catalyst is a funding network for Cardano where teams can seek some funding, network with each other, and start collaborating.
It’s an invaluable space to find those first connections. The projects in the platform tend to be early stage and look for all types of collaborators. In there, many can find a good fit and start the Cardano journey.
5. Build and maintain an active developer profile
While learning smart contract development on Cardano is very fulfilling, it is also equally important for others in the ecosystem to know about your developer progression. Having an active and updated profile is very valuable as others can find out about the progress of a person or the current projects of said individual. This can lead to more gigs, employment, or even startup co-founding opportunities.
There are two main ways to achieve this: GitHub or Gitlab, and the X (erstwhile Twitter) platform. Developer commits are what best shows the progress of a developer.
GitHub can help you showcase your best efforts as a portfolio of projects. In the context of Cardano development, popular programming language choices for smart contract development are Haskell and PlutusTX, but also there are other alternatives like Aiken based on Rust and Plu-ts based on TypeScript. A profile that shows projects written in these languages can be a powerful edge.
While the scope/complexity of a project is also important, being an active committer and constantly adding new commits is what showcases your effort.
In time, building a portfolio of showcase projects is one of the most valuable tools to present oneself. The Cardano community is very active in this regard, so they are fond of these tools.
X/Twitter has a HUGE active crypto and Cardano community which can help you in many ways. Cardano has a sizable community there, so being active in threads, project launches, and news is also crucial. The people in Cardano often communicate on the platform and it is a great way to make introductions.
Are you looking to become a Cardano developer and want a full online blockchain course to guide you from beginning to end?
Then, go to EMURGO Academy, EMURGO’s education unit, to learn more about blockchain education courses and to enroll now.
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