Interview!

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I have my first interview coming up at the start of next week! Not going to lie… I am pretty excited. This is going to be a great opportunity for me to accelerate my learning and make some meaningful contributions to a team. I am confident that I will be worth the investment because I am passionate.

Other than that I wanted to share again my thoughts on Mind Mapping.

I find that Mind Mapping allows me to digest information much more thoroughly. It also allows me greater understanding. I am able to retain more information because of the visual aspect of it. I have found that by taking notes in maps allows me to make links and organize the data in my mind much easier.

Try it out!

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Coding + Mind Mapping

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I am so glad I learned how to code this year. For the latter part of my life I have been searching for something that I could do everyday that would bring me joy. I knew I was always into technology but this year it was time to learn to build things with it. Programming tests me everyday to make sure that I keep challenging myself. Some days I feel like I am a boss at it. Most days I feel like a total noob, but I keep coming back for more.

My bootcamp experience taught me how to learn and tested my patience for this new found discipline. The above quote is an excellent summary of how I learn best.

“Tell me and I forget.” I have a terrible memory. In one chapter of my life I learned to not trust my memory and write things down. This habit I have developed helped to organize my life better.

“Teach me and I may remember.”. Lectures definitely do not stick. Even in elementary school and high school, I was never really able to pay attention the whole time in a lecture. During the bootcamp I was somewhat able to because it was usually a demo or at least it was involving my new found passion, coding.

“Involve me and I learn”. I like how involved we get to be when learning to program. I get to practice and try things out while following along with a lecture, demo, book, video and whatever other source I might be using. The best way to learn to code is to code!

Sometimes coding seems really difficult for me to understand because a lot of the things I am learning are usually abstract ideas. I am a very visual person so I found that mind mapping really helps me pick up new topics.

According to litemind, information in a mind map is structured similar to the way the brain works. It is also an activity that engages both halves of the brain.

If you haven’t tried out mind mapping, I highly recommend it!

There are many different programs out there that do the same thing and it usually comes down to preference which one you choose to use.

Check out this one at coggle to get started.

Otherwise, I’m going to back to coding!

My Tool Belt 0.1

IMG_1051.jpgAs with any craft, the tool arsenal is one of the most important things. Today I am going to share some of the tools that I have been using during my stay at the Coding Dojo bootcamp in Burbank, CA.

Recently I had picked up some new hardware to complement my new found skills.

Below is a summary of the tools I would like to share today. I will try to keep my thoughts brief and will provide a link for anyone that wants to further investigate any of the tools I have been using.

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Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00CYX26BC/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I found out about this keyboard from an instructor at the bootcamp. This keyboard is fantastic! It is wider than my laptop keyboard making typing on it a lot more pleasurable.

Apple Magic Trackpad 

https://www.amazon.com/Apple-Trackpad-Compatible-Computer-MC380LL/dp/B003XIJ3MW

Had to pick up one of these to go with my keyboard. I only use a mouse while gaming. I love using the trackpad. There are so many awesome default gestures provided by apple. If you want to see what gestures they have available go to System Preferences->Trackpad.

Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HVLUR86/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Prior to entering the bootcamp I knew I was going to need a good pair of headphones.  After a full day of research I came across an article that extensively compared multiple products with the conclusion that these bad boys were the one. Summary: excellent headphones!

Mack’s Ear Care Ultra Soft Foam Earplugs, 50 Pair

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0051U7W32/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I find myself getting distracted often even by the slightest noises around me. These solved that issue for me in combination with my headphones.

Safety Eyewear, Orange Frame, SCT-Orange UV Extreme Anti-Fog Lens

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003OBZ64M/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Also found these through the same instructor. Staring at the computer all day can be tiring and bad for your eyes. If you read about the purpose of these types of lenses you will find that they block certain types of lighting that can help reduces eyestrain.

Abstract

Omnifocus

https://www.omnigroup.com/omnifocus

I have been using this app for well over a year now and found it extremely helpful in organizing many aspects of my life. I highly recommend it. There are definitely free alternatives available as this is a paid app.

Simplemind

http://www.simpleapps.eu/simplemind/

Mind mapping tool! Definitely one of my favorite tools. If your unfamiliar with mind mapping check it out. There are many different apps that can help create maps and this is one that I have been using for a long time.

Spotify

https://www.spotify.com/us/

My goto and only music app I use now. I like finding music here and downloading them for offline use. Usually while I am programming I am listening to white noise to help me stay focused.

Pocket

https://getpocket.com/

Pocket helps me keep track of different links that I might not have time to read immediately or want to reference at a future time. This is an awesome tool to save pages and organize them to read later. I highly recommend it!

Sublime

https://www.sublimetext.com/

The first text editor I have used. My experience with it has been so positive I haven’t tried out another!

iTerm2

https://www.iterm2.com/

Alternative terminal app that comes with OS X. It has awesome customization and allows me to have a more visually appealing shell experience.

1Password

https://1password.com/

Because I don’t want to remember all my passwords 🙂 It also can generate passwords for you so they are can be fairly complex without the worry of forgetting them.

MoneyWiz

http://moneywizapp.com/

Everyone should have someway of keeping track of the cash. I have been using this one for a long time. It is also a good way to set budgets for yourself and generate reports on your spending so you can adjust accordingly for the future.

Apple

These 3 are built in to OS X and iOS. They are usually my goto for quick notes since they are extremely stable compared to using a 3rd party application.

Reminder

Notes

Stickies

That concludes this edition of My Tool Belt.

If you have any tools you would like to share please do!