Back to the Grind

Starting and Finishing

Starting something is very easy to do. Finishing that thing is where most people run into problems. You are able to see the final picture very easily in the beginning but that big picture starts to fade away as you get into all the minutia of the project. Trust me, I know this feeling pretty well. An all too common scenario for me is, I’ll think of some grand idea like becoming a professional luthier, or guitar maker, then I’ll start down the road and actually have a good time doing it. I realize in the beginning that I’m not going to be the best and that I just want to get something done and finished. It doesn’t really matter the quality of the first one because that’s just practice. It’s only after the second or third guitar where I start to realize that I haven’t gotten much better, when in all reality I have, that I just decide that I’m not good enough to continue and just give up. I lost sight of the bigger picture I was aiming for, I let excuses get in the way of success. No more will I let that happen, I am determined to put blood, sweat and tears into becoming a better developer, and a better person in general. I am willing to put the time and effort into the work.

The Next Steps

I am now to the point where I normally would try and convince myself that it’s not worth it and start to fade out of whatever it is that I am trying to accomplish. In this case it’s web development, but I am determined to continue down the path and start taking steps to improve myself little by little every single day. If I can have the discipline to improve myself, than there is no doubt in my mind, I will succeed. My next steps in learning web development is going to be to learn Sass. It’s an easier, cleaner way to write CSS and it will make creating websites from scratch that much quicker. I plan to make another mock website and move on from there. I’m excited to keep learning and developing websites!

What I’ve Been Up To

I have been busy with a lot since the last post. The holidays, coding, vacation. It’s been a last month and a half, but it’s back to the grindstone now. I started the 100 days of code community, I am currently on day 72 and have learned a ton during the last 2 months. I have made several small apps using vanilla JavaScript. I just got back from a cruise to the Bahamas which was incredible, didn’t get much coding done, but it was a much appreciated vacation. I’ve been working hard and enjoying time with family and friends. Now back to posting and back to working!

The Podcast

The show has been going great! We are on our 16th episode and we just started our first series on the show called, “Learning another language”. I’m super excited to be still doing the show with my good friend Kevin, we keep each other accountable for the show and for learning code in general. He’s been an immeasurable asset to all my successes with coding and in life lately. I couldn’t be happier with the amount of support we’ve been getting for the show lately, everyone that has commented or shown any sort of support thus far is so appreciated, we have a lot of fun making the show, so thank you to everyone listening!

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Start Before You’re Ready!

You will never be 100% ready for anything

There’s always something holding you back. Learning code is difficult, it’s impossible to remember everything the language has to offer. Not only that but getting clients is hard, finishing a long project is hard, they’re all things that can easily hold you back if you let them. You shouldn’t be ready for any job, or new thing in your life! That means if you wait until you think you’re ready, it’s too late! You waited too long and now you’re help is not wanted, or you’re skill is not relevant anymore. It doesn’t matter what it is that you think you’re not ready for, get out there and accomplish it, it’s the only way you learn!

Early is on time, and on time is late

You’ll never rise to your full potential, waiting for things to happen for you. If you are always the one preparing for the next moment, always studying and learning, never acting and participating, I feel for you. That has been me in the past, I’ve been the one doing a lot of the prep work for something and than simply waiting too long and not acting. It’s always better to do something a little bit too early, then when you are ready. You will learn on the way, the term “Dove into the deep end”, is all about this. It’s always going to feel like diving in the deep end because that’s how progress is made.

Procrastinating…what’s that?

We can all pretend you’re not procrastinating on that project you wanted to do, or that thing you wanted to get done, but don’t worry we all know why you’re doing your 3rd set of laundry in the last 3 hours. That’s ok we all do it, but it’s time to start managing you procrastination. Start to realize when you are doing it and fix it. It’s tough work but eventually you’ll get everything done and feel great!

Failures

Well I haven’t posted in a little while, I’ve been busy with a lot of things, but I am back now! Some failures over the last few weeks have been, I’ve not been working at my JavaScript enough. I have been taking the Wes Bos’s 30 day JavaScript challenge, which has been a real eye opener. Every day is almost not enough to fully learn all the cool programming you can accomplish with JavaScript. Also I need to post more on the blog.

Update

I am working on #100DaysOfCode, I am on day 28 now. Wow feels like yesterday I started on this journey. Feels great to have formed such a good habit of coding everyday. I am on day 5 of the #JavaScript30 challenge, it has been going great, a lot of eye opening things I am learning in JavaScript!

 

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New Project

Brackets Website

As you may know my buddy, Kevin and I have a podcast together. My new project is building a website for the podcast from the ground up. Starting with nothing, I may use some frameworks like Bootstrap, I’m not sure, I haven’t decided yet. I’m currently working on the landing page, it’s not going to be anything to complex, relatively simple in fact. As soon as I figure out how to make a git repository and share it on here you guys will be the first to see!

Podcast Fever

The podcast has gotten some very good traction in the last week, we’ve more than doubled our listeners from previous episodes! It’s very exciting, a lot of thanks goes out to SoloLearn, for those of you who don’t know, SoloLearn is a phone app that has lessons on coding. They have a great supportive community and some cool challenges where you can challenge other people in the community on your knowledge of a specific language. SoloLearn has featured us on their main page, which has helped with listener ship a ton. As you can probably tell I’m pretty excited about this. We are eager to see what comes of this and are happy with the success thus far in the show!

Code Everyday

I have made a big commitment in the last week, I am currently doing the #100DaysOfCode challenge! It’s been very successful so far, I am on day 12 now and I am super happy with the progress that I’ve made. A lot of people on social media have been very supportive and I couldn’t appreciate it more! The coding community in general is a great community to be in. Everyone is very supportive and positive, especially when it comes to encouraging beginners. So I am certainly thrilled to see where this journey leads me, I’ve learned so much already and there is still an infinite amount left to learn! Let’s get coding already!

Failures

I am still on the front end track on TeamTreeHouse and I have started on a little bit more difficult spot in the track, and I kind of have been procrastinating on actually finishing the projects because they seem hard. I am currently working on making a “Connect 4” game with creating new classes and objects. I’ve been focusing more on making that website than I have been with continuing my education.

Wins

The podcast has been a huge win over the last week! I couldn’t have imagined where I am, a year ago. The show’s been a blast and I can’t wait to keep it going. Also just starting the new website project has been great for me. I’ve pretty much built the landing page and now I’ve got to start on the actual meat of the site, which will take a bit more work, but I am totally ready for it! Bring it on!

 

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Forming Good Coding Habits

Habitual Behavior

Forming good habits can be hard, forming bad habits can be easy. The good news is that those can be switched. Habits are basically just rituals that you do everyday, until you don’t have to think about it anymore. Think of all the times you’ve brushed your teeth in the morning or at night, that’s an example of something you’ve just been doing for your whole life. On average it takes about 30 days to form a habit. In terms of forming them, some habits are bigger and some are smaller. Therefore it can be easier or harder to form them. I’m going to focus on the harder habits to form because that’s what I’ve had the hardest time with.

Focus On The Starting Line

One of the hardest parts of consciously trying to form a habit is being deterred from pursuing it everyday, because it involves a lot of effort when you look at the end result. A good way to get around that is to not focus on the end goal. If you’re focusing on the end goal from the beginning, it’s going to be pretty difficult to stick with it once you start to get exhausted of it. Simply focus on the first step of doing whatever it is you want to do. For example if you want to learn guitar, everyday you sit down and hold the guitar in your hands. You don’t have to do anything more than that if you don’t want to. For learning code, the first step would be to open your computer and open up your text editor, or go to the website you’re learning from. Nothing more. The idea here is that, it’s something simple that you can do over and over without feeling too stressed about it, and once you get in the habit of doing that, then actually doing the task will get easier and easier.

Make It Obvious

Something else that can be difficult is actually going to grab the thing that you’re trying to accomplish, or finding the thing you need. The point is that you need to make the habit that you want to form, as obvious as you can make it. Meaning put that guitar in the front room, or somewhere that you pass through over and over. The easier you make it for yourself the more you will actually do it. This one seems simple, but you will find that it can be very effective, it has been for me. I usually keep my laptop right next to me whenever I’m sitting in my chair in front of the t.v.

Failures

Some things that I need to improve on in the past week have been, my JavaScript skills have not been that strong these past few weeks. While learning about AJAX is cool, it’s hard to remember all the objects and commands. So I just need to keep doing it, and it’ll stick before too long!

Wins

I’m not sure if I told you yet but my first web page is finished! Something that I coded from the ground up with no frameworks or templates! Very exciting. That excitement has really given me a good push to keep going! The next thing to figure out on this website is animations using jQuery!

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Trial By Fire

Working It Out

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times, anytime you are doing something on your own it can be difficult. Very difficult. One of the best ways through that difficulty is to just start. It’s daunting, it’s daring, it’s scary. But, man, is it rewarding on the other side. Think of it like physically working out. You will never make any progress by just learning about how to work out, all the different exercises you could be doing, the different kinds of push-ups you could be doing. The more you research it the more in depth the subject gets, the more scary it is. If you jumped in to it right away and learned as you were doing it, then maybe you could take it one step at a time and actually be making some progress and learning more at the same time. The same rule applies to coding!

Jump Right In To The Code

The longer you wait to code up that first website or that first game, the harder it’s going to be. You can learn all day long, and that’s not a bad thing, but only so much can stick in your brain. When you’re taking a class, you just go in, sit down, listen to what the teacher says and walk away. You wouldn’t remember anything of what they said two weeks later. You take notes! You start writing down the information and look in the book for a better understanding. That’s jumping right in to learning, it’s a little different from learning to code because there’s not a physical activity involved with learning. The best way to retain information is by experiencing that information.

Sophomore Slump

After you’ve got your first little project done, you feel great! You’re on top of the world, you’ve just done something that you never thought you’d be able to do. You just manipulated the thing you’ve been using for (at least in my case) your whole life, the internet! Now time to keep learning and expanding my knowledge base. Yes, that’s a good idea, but after you extend you knowledge, the next thing you need to do, is find another project that you don’t think you can do, something that’s just out of reach, and start doing it. I promise you, if you are willing to trudge through that experience and research every 10 seconds. You will come out a better cleaner more polished coder on the other side. I am in the middle of that slump right now.

Failures

Taking notes is such a hard thing for me. I was never good at it when I was in school, and I’m not good at it now. That is one thing that I need to get better at. If you could start a project with some nice neat notes to follow, that would make the whole process, less stressful and smoother. So that’s my failure for this week, take notes.

Wins

I have had a fantastic, but busy week. I have gotten a ton done with the website I’ve been coding. If you don’t know, for the past month, I’ve been reformatting a website to be fully responsive. Now this was just a simple 4 page website made with Wix, but the experience I am gaining is completely priceless! I’m just giddy thinking about this thing all day at work, and can’t wait to get home to work on it some more, thinking of all different ways to help with what I need. Right now I am working on the navbar toggle button. It’s giving me a lot of trouble, but I am determined to crack it. I am making progress every day and am excited about the journey ahead. Have a great week and keep on coding!

 

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Balancing Act

Balanced Life

Learn code on your own is a hard thing. There is a lot of time that is needed to learn, especially if you’re looking to be serious about it. There’s a lot of ways to get distracted and a lot of things that can hold you from learning. Anything from being unmotivated to having a busy schedule, it’s all an easy excuse to make when you aren’t feeling up to the challenge of learning. I’m here to help you stay motivated and balance your life and learn some code in the meantime!

Mindset

I say it all the time, but the right mindset can be the difference between coming home and watching t.v., or sitting down for an hour and trying your hand at that CSS that’s been tripping you up for the last week. I know it can be hard coming home from work late, and just being completely wiped out, trust me I work around 11 hours everyday. If you don’t think that you’ll be able to work on some code when you get home, there’s a few things you can do.

On The Go Learning

Download SoloLearn, that’s a great way to get some refreshers and some practice in on the go, as well as a great supportive community that will help you along every step of the way. There are all kinds of languages you can learn step by step, and some great daily challenges to get you thinking in a programmers mindset. Overall if you’re in a pinch SoloLearn is a great resource to have. This sounds like a plug for them, but I promise you they are not compensating me in any way to say this.

Early Bird Gets The Code

Start getting up an hour earlier and code in the morning, you’ll be surprised how quickly you can get used to this, it really sucks at first, but if you’re motivated and hungry enough to learn, than it will be no problem at all. Start having a little routine when you wake up. Make some coffee, fry an egg, watch a little bit of t.v. so you have time for your brain to wake up. Then when you’re done eating, grab that computer and crunch some code baby!

Working at Work

Bring your laptop to work, I know this isn’t an option for everyone, but if you can, stuff your computer into your work bag and bring it out during lunch. Even getting 20 minutes of coding in would be a huge improvement! It really adds up after a while. If you can’t actually bring your computer in to work save your work on a flash drive and bring that in. If you have any free time at all and your boss doesn’t mind, then go for it!

Keep Notes

This one is hard for me to continue to do, but during the day if you ever think of something that you want to research or a new technique pops into your head about how to solve that latest issue you were having, take some notes. Notes are a great way to keep memories concrete in your head. If you are doing some research at work or throughout the day, like listening to podcasts, or watching some YouTube videos, take some notes on them. You will remember 90% more information after taking notes.

Failures

I’ve been incredibly busy with the podcast and just life in general. We lost a guy at work this week, so that means that I will be taking on that much more. So that means more hours and less free time. My failures include not being able to code more. I’ve been making some good progress these last couple weeks and haven’t been able to get on a true roll because I’ve been so busy.

Wins

I’ve had a great time coding lately. I made a commitment on the podcast that I would have the homepage complete in a month from when the first episode was recorded. I’m pleased to say that I have been making some great progress! I am almost done with the first page. It’s so exciting being able to build something like that from nothing just by writing a little bit of text! Celebrate the little things, every time a little div or element turns out correctly styled, it’s a huge accomplishment! Soon I’ll be celebrating completing my first front end project!

 

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Getting Technical

Technical Issues

The title of this post can mean many different things. It can be literal, where you can get down to the nitty-gritty and really get into the technology, or it can be figurative, breaking it down to the core and figuring out why. That is speaking in very broad terms, but this post will be a little more specific to what I’ve gone through. We’ve had a bit of trouble with the last podcast episode, but you know what, I actually enjoyed solving the problems and getting it out there. Also, on my code there’s always going to be technical issues with that crap.

Literally

Before I start let me tell you, we had a great episode and I wouldn’t change that for anything, we hit all the topics, everything flowed really nicely, and it sounded a  lot better than the first episode. However, there were a few things that went wrong while recording, the biggest being, the recording was CORRUPTED. Yes every podcasters biggest fear. We recorded for about an hour and got done with the episode only to find that at the end when we were trying to save it, the file was completely trash and wasn’t able to save. Before you ask, yes, we tried every way of recovering it, without having to pay an exorbitant fee (we weren’t that invested in the recording). It ended up, we had to record another session, which is fine, you live and learn. Now we had the second recording done, I was editing the files that we had, I was just about done editing, and lo and behold, the last-minute was totally unusable and unfix-able. I called Kevin up and told him to listen to the last-minute of the recording and we both agreed that we should re-record that last bit. So, for the third time, in the studio we go, to record the plugs for episode two. Everything went smoothly this time, we got it done, I edited it and sent it out to upload to the magical cloud. You know what it was worth it.

Figuratively

Let’s talk about some code on this coding blog. I am finally making some headway on my first website I’m building from the ground up. I told you guys a long time ago that I was trying to build the website quandtico.com, well I got stuck pretty early on trying to figure out flexbox. It’s supposed to make the coders life easier, but damn it if I couldn’t figure it out. So what’s my next step when I can’t figure something out, that’s right, totally give up on it and move to the next thing. Well I made myself a goal damn it! I was going to figure this thing out. Coming back to it, the first thing to do was to figure out where I got stuck. It was right on the header. If you view the website there’s almost two headers separated by a border. I tried to emulate that with the html responsibly, by making two different div’s and inside those div’s making two different lists. After doing that I was going to make both lists flexbox and display them horizontally. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong, everything seemed like it should be working. That’s about the time I gave up. After coming back and doing some extra research I realized that I should be putting the “display: flexbox;” value on the parent node of the actual list elements, I was putting it on the

element. Silly me, so I fixed that and IT WORKED, I then proceeded to get on a bit of a roll, fixing things, starting to work on more than just the header finally. Before I knew it I had to go to work (this was in the morning before I go to work by the way.). I lost some of that momentum, but all day at work I had a bit of a high thinking about the progress that I made. I got home and got some more work done on it, but I’ve still got a long ways to go, so wish me luck on my coding adventures!

Failures

I’m not counting the podcast episode as a failure. We did eventually get it out and it sounds great. I guess the failures that I would count, would just be that I should have coded a bit more. It’s tough, when I get home all I want to do is sit in “my chair” and relax, play some video games, watch some t.v., turn my brain off. As long as we have the mindset that we need when we get home, and the end goal in mind, we can do anything!

Wins

I set another goal a while ago, that I was going to have the number guessing game up and running, after building it from scratch. Well, I did it! I watched and read a lot of tutorials, followed those, closed everything, started from a blank canvas, and wrote ALL the code! It was harder than I thought it was going to be. JavaScript has not come as natural to me as I thought it would. I am getting better at thinking like a programmer and troubleshooting those issues that I had such a hard time with at the beginning. Which feels so GOOD!

 

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Motivation

10 Ways To Stay Motivated

10. Make Sure You Have A Passion For This

When you start coding, it’s hard to have a passion for what you’re doing. You most likely started learning because the end goal sounded cool, game developer, web developer, software engineer, woah, sounds awesome. Well that’s where the passion comes in. You don’t know much of anything at the start so it’s hard to keep that passion through out. Just make sure you love the process of learning and you’ll be fine!

9. Build, Build, Build

Something that has really helped me out with starting to learn, is repetition. Looking up a certain project, building it based off of the tutorial, then going off on your own, closing every other window on your computer and troubleshooting code a thousand times. Hopefully this helps you the same way it helped me. Starting out, you will find yourself getting stuck and not being able to even start pointing out why. Just keep at it and you’ll be fine!

8. Mentor It Up

Getting a mentor is huge. I can’t speak personally to this because I don’t have one, I live in a small town in the middle of nowhere. But if you can, go to a meetup, a place where a bunch of newbie coders get together and talk about the things they can’t figure out and to share their successes (spoiler for later in this list). Mentors can be a very personalized way to get help on that one problem, or host of problems you’ve been stuck on, so go get one!

7. Maintain A Portfolio

It’s important to have an archive of all your old work. Not just for the obvious benefits of when you are looking for jobs, and need something to show them in the interview, but it’s nice to look back and see your progress. Make sure the things you have in your portfolio are things that you’re proud of, that way when you show people, it’s something that you are happy to share.  It’s a great thing when you can see how far you’ve come and didn’t even realize it, so save all your crap you’ve been working on, maybe later on you’ll look back on it and be able to fix some obvious mistakes.

6. “Nike Slogan”

We’ve all heard it before, JUST DO IT! Sometimes you can procrastinate the week away in a day. You just have to get off your butt and get the thing done you are dreading. This is a simple one but trust me it works.

5. Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

Keep yourself healthy is a great way to stay motivated. When you start going down the rabbit hole of coding for the last 10 hours, you realize you’re pretty damn sick of it. Make sure you keep yourself hydrated, fed, well exercised. It will do wonders that you don’t even realize. One good thing to do is meditate once a day, it can be very freeing to clear your mind for even a few minutes at a time, thinking of absolutely nothing. Absolutely nothing, doesn’t that sound nice, and hell maybe you’ll even come up with the answer to that problem you’ve been having.

4. Be A Part Of A Community

Having someone to share successes with is a great thing, especially when you’re first starting out. This can come in lots of different forms, friends, family, coder groups, online groups (Brackets on Facebook, check us out!). There are lots of ways to share your problems and successes with people. Look at me I’m posting to the internet where 10 million people read my blog every post……

3. Have The End Goal In Mind

This can go hand in hand with number 10. When starting this journey you probably have something that you want to accomplish, whether it be some sort of engineer, developer, or you just want to learn some new skills. Always keep that end goal in mind. Write it down, have a picture of where you want to be when you reach it, picture it every day. If you keep that in mind you will succeed your goals!

2. Explore New Programming Languages

When you get stuck it can start getting frustrating very quickly, while most of the time I would recommend you stick with the problem you are trying to solve, maybe go on some forums, or ask some people you know from the group you are involved with. Sometimes it can get a little too much and you just end up spending too much time on one problem, that’s when it’s good to get a fresh perspective. Start from scratch on another language entirely. This may seem like a dumb thing when you’re first starting out but it can be really motivating when you know one language really well and are stuck. You will also probably surprise yourself on how quickly you learn the second language.

1. Teach

Now this is for the more experienced people, rather than the people just starting out, but you would be surprised when you think you can teach, versus when you can actually teach. Think about the people who are just starting out, they don’t even know what a <p> tag is. They couldn’t tell you the difference between JavaScript and CSS. You hold a lot more knowledge than you think you do! It can also be a great way to hold on to that knowledge, teaching allows you to remember a lot more than if you were to just learn it.

 

There you go 10 things that will help keep you motivated! A few of them I have not done myself but I plan to in the future, and a few that I have done and will continue to do throughout my entire journey! Now to the successes and failures!

Failures

So I actually have been doing pretty well in a lot of areas since my last post, but I did make the goal last week that I wanted to make a website from the ground up. I have started on that, but I haven’t done anything with it lately. I have been working on getting the roots of my JavaScript up rather than my HTML and CSS. So that’s my failure, I need to start working on the goal that I set of creating a website from the ground up.

Wins

I have some exciting wins this time! As I said I’ve been working more and more on my JavaScript, well it’s been very uplifting lately, because I’ve been able to troubleshoot my own code more and more every time I create some simple little game. Oh man, there’s no better feeling than finally being able to see the issue inside the code and fix it without having to do endless research! Celebrate the small victories!

Once again check out our podcast, anywhere you can find them. For whatever reason we can’t get on Google Play, but everywhere else you should be able to find us. Also check us out on Facebook and join the conversation!

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Daily Coders Grind

Day by Day

Every day you just have to do it. Nike got something right with their motto. Push through the sluggishness, push through the laziness, push through the procrastination, and you will see a better person on the other side. It can seem like a lot but trust me it is worth it. You will hit a lot of walls in the beginning and it’s completely normal to feel deterred, but man if you can just muster up the will to just push through that feeling and pick up the computer one more time. Just once, that’s all you need to do. If you’re feeling overwhelmed and frustrated at one certain problem, and you’re sure this is the last straw, maybe take a day off and relax. Then once you gather yourself and recharge a bit, I almost guarantee when you come back to your project you will have a new understanding of it and solve the thing you were stuck on. It’s hard to believe what the mind can do when you stick to something. Look at exercise, when you do it day after day you don’t really notice any changes but in a year, you look at an old picture and you don’t even recognize that person anymore, that’s a testament to how powerful the mind and body can be when working together to achieve a common goal.

Focus, Dude

As soon as you get off track in the beginning it is so hard to get back on it. One little slip up, playing video games instead of grabbing your computer for a little practice in JavaScript, sitting down after work and letting yourself get distracted by YouTube videos instead of writing a blog you were supposed to write 2 days ago. Now of course this has nothing to do with me, just general advice to follow, anyways let’s move on. The better you can focus, the better you will be at creating a habit. The better you are at creating a habit the faster you can pick things up that will better yourself in the future, which is what I am all about! So focus up on that school project, focus up on that practice you’re supposed to be doing, focus up on that lesson you’re taking on “TeamTreeHouse“. Again nothing to do with me.

Podcast is Up

The first episode of mine and my friend Kevin’s podcast is up, it’s our first ever recording of anything so don’t expect the world, but it’s not too bad, if I don’t say so myself. It’s following two dumb-dumbs on our way to coding glory. You get to hear about our whole journey through the coding world from start to finish, as if there is a finish. Search for “Brackets” where ever you get your podcasts, currently it’s not available on Apple Podcasts (iTunes). But it will be soon. So go give us a rate and review, and as I say in the episode, “Subscribe us”. God I’m an idiot sometimes…

Failures

Stupid number guessing game. I’m still working on that game I was telling you about last week, nothing too special. I actually did make it work once by following the walk through exactly (I know pretty impressive). Now I am working on making the code a little less DRY (Don’t Repeat Yourself) by making functions for each one of the scenarios. It’s not quite working, here’s the link to the forum where I asked about this, StackOverflow.

Wins

Well as I said, I actually got the guessing game to work. I tried my hardest to not go off of the tutorial. I would look at the code, study it, then go into my text editor and write out as much as I could without looking back at it. I actually liked this technique, now I am just writing it a second time without looking at the first code at all. It worked out pretty well although I did have some previously stated problems. Now that I’ve got a better handle on JavaScript, time to get a better handle on HTML and CSS, and write a web page from the ground up!

Again check out our podcast on whatever podcast app you listen on, here is a link to the podcast which will take you to the Anchor website, where we published it from. You will be able to listen to it on a platform from there. But really, just look it up on your phone.

Podcast Graphic
Bracket Podcast

 

New Podcast

New Day

Tomorrow is a good day! I will soon be launching a new podcast with my good friend and coding buddy, Kevin Sauer. The plan is to record the conversation tomorrow and post it by the next day. There’s been a lot of planning and scheduling over the last week and a half, but I think we’ve got everything down and ready to go. We will see though. I just wanted to get that out of the way early because it’s something I am very excited about and looking forward to. There’s no better motivation than discussing exactly what your trials and triumphs are with the people you love and respect. If you are thinking about starting your own podcast, and you have a great idea, there’s nothing stopping you. Nowadays it’s as easy as ever to get your content out there, I would recommend looking into the website Anchor. It’s an easy way to record, edit and publish the content that you need. Then after you think you have enough experience maybe move on from there.

It’s All About Doing

You can sit and learn all day every day, and that’s not a bad thing. In fact it’s a really good thing, it can be really difficult to not just shut your brain off everyday after you get home from work. You’re tired and don’t feel like doing anything but sit in your favorite chair, lean back and turn on the t.v. I get it trust me. Getting back to my point, you can learn all day, but I believe you’ll never truly retain the information better than if you are actually doing the things that you’re studying. Actually putting the learning materials down and starting to (in my situation) write some code, and do the research if you get stuck, can be the difference between a long term interest, and a month or two long hobby. I recommend just starting off small, learn the simplest thing you can possibly program or code up. If you’re looking more towards JS, then code a simple random number generator, then work up from there. The reason I say that is because that’s about the stage that I am at. I have been going through the TreeHouse front end development track (which has been wonderful by the way), and I’m about halfway through the whole thing and realized that I didn’t really have a good grasp on JS. So I have been just taking simple exercises to sharpen my skills, and let me tell you they have not been going well.

JavaWhat?

So I can’t be the only one to have this much trouble at the beginning of coding my JavaScript. I mostly understand the ideas behind all of the vanilla functions, objects, loops etc. but when it comes to writing something from scratch I just come up blank. I don’t know where to start. I have been trying my best though and sticking at it, actually I have been noticing slight improvements here and there. My syntax is still garbage, or at least knowing where to write the things that I mostly understand based on the scope of the other code. When you are writing something as simple as a random number generator, it sometimes can feel like you just don’t even get the language in general. Although I HAVE HOPE! I’m going to stick with it and keep working.

Failures

Well I think you know what I’m going to say for failures. I have been trying and failing multiple times at creating a guessing game. A simple little game where the computer creates a random number from 1 to 100 and you try to guess what it is. If your guess is incorrect it will tell you all the previous numbers you’ve guessed and if it was too high or too low. If you guess 10 times than it’s game over, you lose. I’ve been making some headway on it lately though, so wish me luck!

Wins

As I said I am taking a break from actually learning new code. Although before this break I was making some good progress into figuring out how exactly to further optimize the speed of your site via sprite mapping, encoding .svg’s rather than .jpg’s. Now on to learning more JS!

Support is Much Needed

Keep your eye out for our new podcast launching on this Thursday, September 27th! It’s called Brackets, the idea for the podcast is similar to that of this blog, where we are both trying to become full time coders, with a current full time job. We’ll talk about all the failures and wins along the way, while having a great conversation. So check it out if you can and thanks in advance!