Week 0

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I completed my first week of work as a Web Developer. Here is a quick summary of what happened.

Orientation
There were seven other people schedule for the same orientation. They consisted of people assigned to various departments and levels. The group had interns, part time employees, full time employees, hourly employees, salary employees, basically the most diverse crowd for an orientation I have seen.
After some administrative tasks and presentations we took a tour of the building and checked out four of the eleven floors in the building. Yes the company works on all four floors. We also got a sneak preview of some of the many active projects/sites that the company manages.

Understanding
The remainder of the week I started my various components for my training. A couple trainings required by the HR department and the rest relating to technology. Some of the topics covered were understanding team workflow, team structure, various processes, an intro into the company content management system and many other topics. There was tons of information I covered, too much to list here.

Feeling
I recall the feeling I had after completing my coding boot camp. It felt like I was able to physically see hundreds of doors open and I didn’t know which door to go through. After getting invited to work at IB, it now feels like I have been pulled into one large door only to realize this was a door to another, much larger universe. Much like the final scene from Men in Black II (check out the last 15 seconds).

Guilt
I have to be honest. I feel guilty for getting paid for what I do. I heard from developers before that we get paid to learn. I just didn’t realize I would feel guilty about it. I really do enjoy the path I have taken. Hopefully I will get used to it one day. I am glad I get to learn, organize, build solutions and code for work. I like it… a lot.

Tips
There is so much information to take in so…

– Mind Map everything that seems confusing or unclear.
The process of building these maps has helped make more sense of things. My favorite app right now is MindNode, but it doesn’t really matter which one you use.

– Level up
Always keep learning, everyday.

– Learn to Project Manage your life
In another post I will share my schedule and tools I have been building on for quite some time now.
I have recently moved from managing my daily, weekly and monthly tasks with OmniFocus to Trello.
Trello allows me to have more customization for organizing my projects, recurring tasks and other GTD tasks (Getting Things Done). Some info about GTD wikipedia and gettingthingsdone.

Philosophy
Craft
n.
Skill in doing or making something

Craftsman
n.
A person who practices a craft with great skill

Everyday.

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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!

Importance of Organization

In this post I want to share my thoughts on the skill of organization.

Definition for organize:

  1. arrange into a structured whole
  2. coordinate the activities of (a person or group of people) efficiently
  3. make arrangements or preparations for (an event or activity); coordinate

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Ever since I can remember I always enjoyed organizing different things. I liked to move furniture around and see if there were more efficient layouts that I could try out. Before I started my coding bootcamp I didn’t realize what a valuable skill I had begun to develop. I fully agree with the above quote. Organization in our lives really can improve our everyday. Read that quote 5 times and reflect on what that means to you.


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I started with organizing the physical objects around me before I had ever attempted to organize my mind. I could definitely tell the difference in my state of mind when I had things around me in order versus not in order. Reduced clutter allowed my mind to think clearly on what I wanted to accomplish.


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When I read this, the first thought that came to my mind was “I really wish I could download information into my brain faster like a computer to save some time”.But I can’t, so instead I recall a discussion with a mentor about how I would go about reaching a certain goal. We drew a graph that explained how we can get to any goal in our lives. If we work toward our goal each day we would eventually get it to. If someone’s goal was to earn X amount of dollars in X amount of years, everyday decision will dictate how long it would take to reach that goal. Each day we have to make a decision what to do with our time and these choices either increase the time it takes to reach our goals or brings us a little closer to them. A little trick is to pre-organize your time for the week and see what you can accomplish.

 


TL;DR (Too long; didn’t read)

I believe staying organized around us and in our minds greatly improves the quality of our lives and I highly recommend trying it out!

I feel this skill comes in handy when thinking about programming. I enjoy keeping my desktop with only files I am working on for that day so they are easily accessible and the rest of the files get organized based on chronological order for each week of work in my CodingDojo folder. It also helps me track my progress and growth when I go back and review work done many week ago.

Keep your desktop clean! It helps keep the mind clean and focused.