It would be a tic-tac-toe app. It can be a calculator app. It doesn’t matter.
Just keep it as simple as possible.
You can either choose 4 to 6 or 8 projects to work on. It really doesn’t matter. But at the very minimum pick 4 projects you’re comfortable with and start working on them.
The key thing to remember is to keep these projects fluid. Meaning you can change at any time.
In fact, what I would recommend is once you’ve created your first project or once you complete your second project or third or basically any time you complete a project you should re-evaluate the projects in your roadmap.
You should ask yourself something like, “based on what I know, based on my skills, should I modify my second project to be something different?”
This is because you’re always going to be learning as you’re building projects or reading blog posts.
Whatever it is, you’re going to be picking up so much information. So, what you knew a month ago is going to be different from what you know today.
You want to constantly be changing that roadmap.
One of the issues that I see with a lot of people is that they create a roadmap and they’re so scared that it’s not a perfect roadmap.
They never even follow it!
The key thing here is to constantly adapt.
So, you’re building applications. You’re starting with something simple. You’re making it more complicated.
You’re adding different technologies and adding different programming languages if that’s the direction of where you want to take things.
But, how do you know when enough is enough?
I know I said you should create anywhere from 4 to 8 projects but I’ve seen 10 applications on a portfolio.
How do you know when it’s enough?
Well, there’s no right answer but I’d say once you get to at least the 4 mark or maybe 6 mark, at that point if you’re able to build applications.
If you’re able to build features on those applications with some confidence.
Chances are good and you are ready to go out there and at least try to see what opportunities you may have in the job market.
Then you can create your personal website and add your portfolio section on there as well.
Just make sure that when you showcase your portfolio on your website that you do it in a nice way and it looks nice.
I would stick to minimal.
If you’re like me and don’t like styling, just make sure you explain applications.
Make sure you include screenshots or gifs. Make it standout.
Make it look fun and just be yourself. Show some personality.
That’s way better than being robotic!
I hope this gives you a good sense of what the programming portfolio is, how it plays a role in you getting a job in the future and how to go about building it.