Hit the ground, walking briskly

Somehow my brain has conveniently forgotten the woes of buying college textbooks. It’s a scam; you’re getting swindled and you know it. There’s nothing pretty about the process. The sour part of remembering all this is I’ve managed to pay more for textbooks and supplies ($297) than for the class itself ($208). What the actual hell?! Whatever. We can’t get too upset about these things in life.

Cost of Textbooks > Cost of Tuition

The books and lab supplies I purchased for my programming fundamentals course revolve around C. Thus, I think it’s only reasonable to dabble in aC tutorial for a week or two until class starts. I’ll have a little extra time to process and understand what is going on and get a head start. Something about old dogs and new tricks…

As far as FreeCodeCamp progress goes, I have successfully completed the challenges section for the Responsive Web Design Certification. Additionally, I have worked through 2 of the 5 projects for that certification (build a tribute page & build a survey form). Some HTML attributes are a little elusive, and I realized I need to do a little more reading to distinguish when exactly each is appropriate.

“You’re a wizard, Harry.”

Though I’m not feeling like much of a wizard in terms of the recent HackerRank hackathon, it was fun seeing what kind of problems and questions I might run into during an event in the future! I do however feel pretty good about the progress I am making with FreeCodeCamp. For work, I was tasked with creating a promotional landing page for a featured product. I think I surprised my boss with what I could do to customize over the current CSS theme for the site. It made me feel pretty good! Though it’s a minor win, it’s still fuel to push me forward in my learning!


Landing on my feet headfirst.

It’s official! I’ve been given the green light to take “Programming Fundamentals I” at a local community college. I was concerned about being dropped for missing the first two class meetings (traveling for work), but the professor says as long as I communicate and can keep up it’ll be fine. Rejoice!

In other news, HackerRank is holding a 48-hour Hackathon beginning this Friday. I signed up to participate (it’s free) even though I have next to no idea whatsoever what will be happening. Perhaps I can learn a thing or two about what to expect from an event like this in the future. Maybe It’ll be boring, but maybe it’ll be a fantastic experience I can take lessons from.


Baby steps > No steps

I have completed sections 1 & 2 of FreeCodeCamp covering basic  HTML, HTML5, and CSS. Most of it is a simple review, but it feels good to make progress no matter how minor!

Look what I can do!

Small feats aside, it might not mean much to have a  lone certification from CodeCamp. But that certification along and cumulative projects involved, as well as certs and projects from other learning resources might add up to something (Udemy, Edx, CodeAcademy, etc.)! What’s even better is all these sites offer a free version of learning.

I’ll be making donations to the sites as I work through them to show my support and gratitude. We live in a wonderful time of technology and free information! For the most part, all you have to pay with is time and effort.

A single baby step is better than no step taken at all.

Hello world!

After fleeing my hometown of Tracy, California in 2012, I attended Humboldt State University in the far reaches of northern California. In my time at HSU I studied applied biology and completed coursework in electron microscopy, bacteriology, genetics, and independent research. In 2015 I graduated with a 4-year degree and entered the workforce as a histotechnician. I happily sat in front of a microtome for a couple years.

After a job-hop-gone-wrong (actually, 2 bad job-hops), I decided I needed to reassess my career direction and how it would work into the lifestyle I longed for. I discovered there was a very short list of things I wanted from my career:

  1. Flexibility to work remotely — commuting consumes one’s soul
  2. Stimulating and tech-related — learning new things is important
  3. Feels good & is rewarding — agrees with my “moral compass”

I know, I know. I couldn’t possibly be more vague with my list. But face it, that’s what I came up with. And the more I thought about it, the more my subconscious pointed me toward the world of computer science.

It is only fitting that the beginning of my journey into the world of computer science starts with a post titled, “Hello world!”. The purpose of this site is to hold myself accountable for the hopes and dreams I have held for some time now. Not only will it serve as a reminder of my long and short-term goals, it will be a living portfolio. I’ll discuss my journey of learning new skills and breaking into a new industry.

And so the journey begins.