Beyond the Basics

I’m still getting a feel for the pacing at Nashville Software School, and resetting my expectations along the way. Perhaps there is no typical pacing–except for “everything at light speed”–as one might expect from a professional setting, which is potentially by design.

The biggest delta between my expectations and actuals has been the amount of classroom instruction. After so many years of classes where instruction would consume 90% of every day, experiencing the flip side of that equation was abrasive at first. But after a few days of minor irritation, I realized that this is exactly the pacing I was looking for.

One of the prospects of software development that drew me to the field originally is that of a constant learning curve. There’s always going to be some new technology or language or application on the horizon, waiting to be studied, understood and innovated upon. This classroom I’m in for the next ~6 months is a luxury. For me to realize that opportunity after graduation and for the rest of my career, it is going to be all on me.

One of my complaints about the higher education system today is that after so much time spent working in theory, many graduate without any of the soft skills or the real professional experience required to land a decent entry-level job. I am appreciating more and more the focus on “figuring it out” and collaboration that NSS offers, and am confident that I will have some rich experience to share with prospective colleagues and employers by the time December hits.

In terms of actual coding concepts, we started and finished JavaScript fundamentals last week. I’ve written over a dozen mini JS programs, and I finally understand what JSON means. There was a big focus on arrays and objects; I even borrowed Roger Sperberg’s amazing idea to print business cards with your contact information represented as a JavaScript object. My results below, click zoom in:

business card results

This week we’ve started on our first group project and are really challenging ourselves with Git. Also getting familiar with Trello and tiny-scale workflow management. Good times to come!


One thought on “Beyond the Basics

  1. Paul

    Sounds like you’re learning fast – but more importantly, enjoying the experience. Inspirational read!


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