Mary Dickson Diaz

Code, Life, Learning

Tag: ruby on rails

report from railsconf

This past week I was fortunate to attend my first major conference as a software developer, under the RailsConf 2016 Opportunity Scholars & Guides program. Look at these cuties!

scholarsguides

Here’s me with my awesome guide Jason:

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And some sticker swag:20160508_110123

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the struggle is real

Hey folks, happy Labor Day!

I survived week 1 of the Ruby on Rails bootcamp. We’ve had to do a lot of work and reflection in class about what we’re learning, which makes me less inclined to write about it here. Yet. Stay tuned. In the meantime, you can take a peek at my portfolio site, which is build in Ruby on Rails and uses foundation zurb for the layout elements. It’s served on Heroku and redirected to a custom domain (that I got on sale for $4 from namecheap). Eventually–and in theory–it could replace this WordPress site altogether!

Introducing: marydickson.info

Please, internet, behave yourself around the blog tool until I get user authentication in place (this week probably).

My first week was overall very positive with one small hitch in the form of some medical issues I’m dealing with (remember when I was all, “let’s get the doctor visits etc out of the way before class starts”? Yeah, I did not do that, nor would it have necessarily helped). This means that I haven’t been able to devote 100% to the material and assignments, but this long weekend was a good chance to catch up.

In reflecting on how my health needs might potentially conflict with a high-impact, time-intensive program, I’ve also come to peace with the fact that two months is essentially an arbitrary amount of time and this might take me longer. Which is not to say that I don’t intend to work hard, do my best, and take full advantage of the excellent resources available to me during that time. But if my body is telling me to go take a nap, coding will still be there when I wake up.

It also might not take me longer, which would be great. But I’m prepared for the possibility. As of this moment I’m a member of the Caught-Up Club.

I have to give a lightning talk next week. What should I talk about?!

riding rails (for fun and profit)

At the end of my interview, the instructor asked, “Soooo… what are you doing in September?”

And just like that, I snagged a spot in Code Fellows coveted Ruby on Rails development accelerator, an 8 week full-time bootcamp designed to jump-start a career in web development. Hi-fives for everyone!

I was nervous but well-prepared going into the interview. Keeping this website and writing about what I’m learning has been a good way to internalize it and work out “talking points.” I was glad that I took some time to clean up my portfolio site (www.marythought.com) since that was one of the first questions asked, “do you have a projects site we can look at?” Why YES indeed I do!

I have a month to prepare, so I updated The Plan with what I’m working on before class starts. In a nutshell:

  • get some more perspectives on Ruby on Rails, and learn as much as I can about Rails apps
  • review JavaScript (two weeks of the DA will focus on this) and practice it via some hands-on projects
  • bone up on algorithms and core programing concepts

I’m also going to try to take care of some of those pesky “life” tasks. I finally renewed the car registration (they give you two years in Washington before you have to get an emissions test), and I need to set up my new health insurance and convert to life as a married person.

At times throughout this process I’ve felt a bit aimless, so it’s good to be entering into a period of intense, highly structured time focused on becoming career-ready. And, much as I’m currently feeling “let’s get this show ON THE ROAD” it all happened exactly when it needed to, and not before.

Thanks for coming along for the ride. More adventures to come!

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