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Coding Under Control – Don’t Be Silly

The World Needs More White Boards

The World Needs More White Boards

Yesterday as I was working on my homework I ran into a little problem.

If you remember a few weeks ago I wrote about starting with the least common denominator of what an application is supposed to do and then building functionality on top of that.

Well, I forgot my advice. I decided instead of hitting four singles in a row to score two runs I would simply hit a home run with my first at bat.

It didn’t work out so well.

Here is how it all came to happen. Continue reading

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A Day at The Iron Yard

My day at The Iron Yard

My day at The Iron Yard

A number of you have been asking what a “normal day” looks like for me as a student here at the Iron Yard. I thought I’d take a few minutes and give you somewhat of an overview of a “normal day.”

Let’s begin by defining what “normal” means in this case. The day I am describing would fit the bill for Monday through Thursday. Friday is a full day of homework, other than that it follows a fairly similar track.

The Night Before

I feel like I should start before the morning comes, because the success of my days at the Iron Yard starts the night before.

I don’t have a whole lot of a social life right now. Not because I couldn’t but more because I choose to focus on learning Ruby on Rails. I try to stretch my social life muscle on the weekend.

One of the benefits of not having much of a social life is that I can go to bed early. I try to be in bed by 9 or 9:30… I can still function if I get less sleep, just not as well. Continue reading

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Staying Connected – Friends and Family Really Matter

My Family...

My Family…

Over the years as I’ve followed different technology “people” I started to notice a trend.

A lot of them, when talking about how they got to where they are today, mentioned one thing that I am finding to be true. That thing is that it takes a lot of work to stay connected to family and friends.

Most of these guys moved from wherever they had grown up to California. I’ve not done that, and its only been a few weeks, but I have felt how easily the “distance” can grow. Continue reading


Doing some homework…

Working on emails…

Drinking a coke zero…

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Sunday Afternoon at the ATV

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Doing the Work – HTML and CSS


The One Thing I Thought I Knew

Did you ever think you knew something fairly well but when it came time to do the entire project yourself you realized that there was going to be a pretty steep learning curve?

Wednesday the Atlanta Ruby class dove into HTML and CSS. I welcomed the change from trying to do test driven Ruby development on Conway’s Game of Life to something that I was pretty sure I would be comfortable with.

To be fair, I have used HTML and CSS much more frequently than any other programming languages. I did have a bit of a head start in the conceptual part of understanding how HTML and CSS works. But… and you have to know that this was coming… I didn’t realize how much I was going to learn. Continue reading

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Learning Ruby on Rails the Hard Way

This is something of a confession. It’s also a realization that maybe I learned something the wrong way.

I’ve worked with WordPress for a number of years. I’ve built personal sites and blogs and currently maintain a small fleet of client sites as well.

To say that I love WordPress would be an understatement. One of its greatest assets is that it is so approachable. I can literally get a simple website up in fifteen minutes. Is it possible though, that for someone who wants to go a bit deeper in their understanding, it may be “to simple?”

Why WordPress?

I’ve been thinking recently about why I originally got into building sites with WordPress. The pure and simple reason was that I wanted to be able to present “stuff” online. I wanted to learn how to build websites. Continue reading

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What Are You Building Today?

Yesterday all of the students here at the Iron Yard got to listen to John Saddington talk about “Winning the Internet.”

We talked about a lot of things around making sure that we stand out as individuals in a flooded market.

Being Different

One thing that especially stuck out to me was the idea that most of us will be competing against five or so different people for a single job. The importance of being different in this case is pretty spectacular.

The angle that the whole talk came from was blogging, social networking, etc… so to put it in blogging terms. If I take 10 to 15 minutes every day and write about something I’m experiencing or learning about Ruby, it won’t kill me. However, the chances are pretty good that the rest of the world isn’t doing that.

So when a potential boss searches my name, what pops up? Hopefully a bunch of posts about me and my take on Ruby development.

For the rest of the guys in the potential hiring circle… maybe not…
Continue reading