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Hands to Keyboard

I’ve been immersing myself back into the world of coding as I knew it.  The guilt is gone, I feel more like myself. I am more active on Twitter, I’m actually talking to people online.  I have been updating my blog, I am reading and wondering what to do next. I know for now, I want to stick to the front end. Will definitely finish Skillcrush’s WordPress Blueprint (they’re awesome, check them out!).  It teaches you how to work on PHP.  Have been catching up on blogs.

I reached out to a friend who is interested in a webpage.  I’m totally down for that!  I’m so freaking ready my hands itch.  Decided to start up slowly with something that I can get instant gratification from.  I went over to freecodecamp, and as I was scrolling down the Challenges, I saw how quickly I’d get to touch Javascript and started doodling around on it and have done the first couple of challeges.  To be fair, the first 3 are basic things liek introducing yourself, and such, but I put n about 2 hours tonight of HTML and CSS.  Everytime I think I’m SO over a beginner html/css lesson, I ALWAYS end up learning something new.

This time it was a CSS tid-bit (is that the correct phrasing? I want to say Selector but I”m not sure if it’s one and I’m too tired to google it (it’s 1:59am, Eastern Time).  Anywho, I learned that “@max-width” is your go-to CSS for activating things below a maximum width.  It’s a really cool responsive trick that seems so obvious now that I know about it.

Nice surprise about the Freecodecamp’s challenges is that you actually experience javascript even BEFORE you read about it in the challenge list. I thought I’d get to it on lesson 8: Get started with JQuery but I had a pleasant surprise when  I came across it in lesson 4: Build a Responsive Blog Theme.  I’m happy to say that the line of javascript made NO sense when I first wrote down what they said to, but afterwards they explained it nicely and even compared how the syntax is similar to HTML/CSS, in that you use selectors and make them do things.  This was nice and made me see JS is a new light. Okay folks, time to hit the hay.

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My possible 2 seconds of fame

Phone update, because I’m too lazy to get off the couch and sit at my desk (you see why I need a laptop). Please excuse any typos.

Last week the New York Public Library’s project_ had a meetup for the current class and past alumni.  I, of course, went to support the new students and also hear about the second installment they're planning on hosting. 
Turns out there will be a javascript course for those that have taken the html/css intro class which will be deployed sometime this fall (yay). 
While there i caught up with my teacher, Ralph, and he invited a few of us to come in today  and speak to his current class. I totally jumped at the chance.

I remember when I first started out, I wanted to talk to other beginners and others that were somewhat advanced.  To this day I still want to talk to people about developing all the time.  I felt I needed to give back to others.  I'm not out there fully immersed in the tech world, but it's encouraging to know that the learning process doesn't end once class is over. 
Some of the best times I've had regarding coding,  I wasn't even coding.  I was just sharing ideas, brainstorming on things to build with my classmates (one of the sessions which happened today over delicious Bangladeshi cuisine).
I guess after  I told Ralph what I've been up to, he told his supervisor and she had someone from the media department at the library shoot me an email and asked me if I'd mind sitting down and answering  a few questions.  So we chatted last night and she asked me if any news or media outlets want to contact me if that would be okay. Um. ...hell yea they can contact me.  She also asked if i minded being photographed.  Um...hello...selfie-whore over here!  I didn't say that, though.  I told her, "I'm cute, I don't mind."
She laughed and told me she liked my energy and hoped maybe someone will see me and offer me a position.  I hope so. It would be so awesome if i got hired based on my enthusiasm for learning and getting better. 
Which reminds me... i had shared an ad on twitter  for an open position for Treehouse and said how I wished I had the years of experience they required.   One of my followers told me I should just go for it.  Apply.  I told him i didn't have a portfolio and haven't built that many pages and he replied that I should still go for it. He explained that the first job he ever got as a ruby developer, he didn't have A portfolio and wasn't all that great with ruby but he was hired based on his enthusiasm.  He also told me "what's the worse that could happen", and he's right.   What's the worse that can happen?   So, I applied because you never know....What's the worse that can happen? What's the best that could happen?

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Laptop…

I really think i need a laptop.  I liked the macbook air i used during the Citeshare project.  It was light and convenient.  I wish i had taken advantage of trying to set up an environment and seeing how it worked.  I can’t justify the price for a new one right now.

I friend gave me the idea of getting a chromebook and installing ubuntu, which I’ve worked with (and loved) before.   Not going to lie,i love the opensource vibe to ubuntu and other linux distrosw, but i like using the programs i know.   Officelibre is really nice,  but i love MSOffice. I like things to look polished and finished.  I like the bling, what can i say?

I’m not completely sold on the idea of developing on a chromebook. Doing front end development will require me to have a nice screen.  It’s a must.  I also want a strong processor that can handle multiple browser windows being open (I’m a tab whore) and sublime text or brackets. 

I saw this sweet toshiba that has everything i want and doesn’t weigh much but will take a bit of a hit in my pocket.

So many options.  What laptop do you use?  Do you do front end?  Back end? Do you like your setup? If not, what would you go with instead?

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Signs

I believe in signs.   I started learning to knit a few years ago.  I was unemployed and bored.  A few weeks later, a friend of mine found a job posting in a knitting store.  He told me to apply for it,but I refused.  I didn’t have enough experience.  For the next few days I would see knitting needles and yarn, EVERYWHERE.  I started seeing people knitting in the park, on the train, I came across knitting tattoos online…. I took it as a sign.  I applied and got the job.  I worked there for 2 years.  To this day it’s been my most favorite job.

This morning I was sitting on the train, feeling sorrow and regret over a personal matter that occured last night.  I was sitting with my best friend, who I’ve NEVER ridden with on my morning commute, so it felt nice to have her next to me.  She got up on her stop and in her place sat a girl.  She quickly whipped out a Macbook air and opened up sublime text and lo and behold, like 5 windows of ruby code popped up.  In ALL of my years of commuting I’ve NEVER sat next to another coder.  I know she was just learning, as the page she was working on said “my goals are” and the rest was Lorom Ipsum.

I wanted to ask her so many questions, but didn’t because I didn’t want to interrupt her and I was fascinated in seeing what she was working on from the tip of my eye.  It was a sign.  I’m going down the right path.

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Moving on

Phone post. Please excuse any typos.

I spent the weekend just clearing my mind and emotions of any negative thoughts that were cluttering up my creative flow. I told myself i will jump back into the swing of things today.  I can’t continue to feel bad about not reaching my expectations. 

So here i am. I have 2 tutorials i was working on: the wordpress blueprint from skillcrush.com (a paid class) which i signed up for when citeshare was on wordpress and i believed was where it would stay and codeschool (monthly subscription).  I decided i would work on both simultaneously: codeschool during lunch on days when i had the chance and skillcrush at home (since my pc at home is my “server”). I’m thinking with the php skills under my belt I’ll be able to freelance and definitely go out there and make sites for ppl. I’m excited.

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Walking away

The past few weeks, have been filled with work and so many feelings of guilt.  I have been busier with my (non-developing) job, incorporating working out into my schedule, family and guilt.  The little time I have left over, was for developing.

But, I couldn’t work on developing.  I was blocked and torn. I get motivated when I work on tutorials and I felt like I couldn’t work on them.  My time was limited, and I felt guilty working on them, when I should have been working on the Citeshare project.  The guilt was so crippling that it took me 2 weeks to finish one section of a codeschool tutorial that could have taken me about an hour or so.  I couldn’t focus on the tutorials.  When I did work on them, I couldn’t focus.  It got to the point that I couldn’t bring myself to work on the website, as when I sat to work on it, I wasn’t motivated.

It was a bad cycle and it got to the point that I felt like I was holding back the project. I made the decision last week that it wasn’t fair to the project that my guilt and lack of time was getting in my way and I walked away from it.  The decision wasn’t an easy one for me, but I had to step away from what I wanted, which was to design this amazing site, and let the project move on without me.

The project is to be deployed soon. It’s to be showcased and shared to the world.  I don’t have enough time and knowledge to bring it where I felt it needed to be before we showed it to the world.  I needed to learn a few things and then implement them to the site.  It would’ve taken me past the deadline given to me, and that wasn’t fair to the project.

I know I’ll probably be kicking myself later on, when this project goes live, but in the here and now, I know I made the right decision.

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