Programming insights to Storytelling, it's all here.
There is a time where the thing that bothers you the most in your programming career is the semicolon. You've formally learned that every statement ends with a semicolon, the same way every sentence ends with a period. But then you join a team that has complete disregard for your favorite punctuation.
If you ever think about becoming a writer, then go ahead and type a single character on Google. Before your finger is off the key, Google will recommend hundreds if not thousands of material. Not just any material, good material. There are classes on Udemy, there are videos on YouTube, there are well written articles from prominent bloggers. You can join forums, clubs, guilds. There is no shortage of information to turn a complete newbie into a respectable author.
12 years ago, I went to IHOP. Or was it last week? No, it was last year before the pandemic. Time is a blur. In my trip to IHOP, with our two little boys, my wife and I were experimenting with the different type of food they like. They had just turned one and hated every single meal of the day. But they had also developed an appetite for anything that was on my plate or my wife's.
I've been awfully quiet on this blog for a little while, and it's about time I say hello. So, Hello! I'm hoping to spend more time blogging this year since I've just taken a decision that gave me more time. On December 30th 2020, I left my job. I was the first engineer hired in a start up called Abot (later renamed Thankful). We used AI and automation to improve customer service for a plethora of online shopping websites.
In web development, connecting the application to a database is rarely an issue. Most programming languages come with a database driver that does all the work. You call the connect function with credentials and host as arguments, and you are in. When working on a phone app, we expect to do the same thing. But there is a key difference here.
The advantages of working in tech is that our work can easily transition into consulting. It's all code after all. But at work we use tools like Jira or Trello. The manager drops tickets in your queue and that's what you work on. We rarely think about what to do next. When consulting, you are on your own to figure what to do right now. Most developers will give up on consulting after their first stint. (Turns out you hate working on your cousin's app)
I once worked in a small security booth in downtown LA. The capacity was exactly for one person sitting down. But each shift had two security guards. To fit in the booth, both guards had to stand up. One of the guards who often interrupted my sitting and forced me to stand up was Lance. After so many years at the job, Lance was tired of working as a security guard. The pay was low, the hours were inconvenient and there were no opportunities for growth. One of the janitors told him that he would make more money if he worked with them instead. Depending on seniority, he could eventually become team lead. Plus he would be part of a union, so no one could ever fire him.
CSS has a feature called !important. What it does is force a property to be used, regardless of other properties that are more specific. It can be very handy.
I grew up learning about America in a chapter or two in our school's history book. It said that Christopher Columbus sailed across the seas. Through shear luck, he discovered the new world. When he reached the land, he greeted the inhabitants as Indians. The book went on to describe him as a heroic navigator and trader. That's the image I had ingrained in my mind.
It's easy to decide if a writing is bad. The author uses big words, writes long complicated sentences, and forgets the point he is trying to make. Other common things in bad writing is lack of structure and lack of knowledge in the subject. In a nutshell, when you read it, you don't understand it.