A Beginner’s Journey

Hello Readers,

I have been delaying this post for aeons(eyerolls here) but you get my drift. I have so many topics to write about that I actually did not write anything(I know,classic,right).
For now I have decided to write about my forays into the world of software-development.

It started last year with I taking a MITx introductory course in Python taught by Professor Eric Grimmson.At first,it was hard but the prize of a certificate and the fact that I was solving problems in Python, writing my own code was fascinating.Three months rolled by and I finished the course.
I was a bit tired so I started playing with HTML and some CSS but I was not serious about proper software development until May this year as I was focused on getting a medical job in another country,which however fell through.
I was demoralized at first, then I stumbled unto the WorldQuant Website which piqued my interest in Data Science.I applied quickly inspite of my daughter screaming into my ear for attention. I forgot about it and decided to explore one of EDx courses in Data Science(UCSanDiego) which helped smoothed the learning curve.
I found that Prof. Eric had given me a solid background in Python ,sharpened my thinking skills and re-ignited my love for mathematics(why I became a medical doctor is another story).
By mid-May, the Worldquant Module in Data Science kicked off as I was accepted and oh boy I loved every minute of the course,thanks to Stack Overflow, Visualize Python and of course Pandas documentation.It was in this course I learned to read documentation.
Since then ,I use the documentation on a language or a library as an accelerated learning tool.
The course was done and dusted in two months but I knew I needed to practise so I headed to Kaggle to do just that.

Right about mid-July ,I applied for the Andela/Google/Pluralsight 4.0 program. I chose the Mobile Web track.At first, Pluralsight rolled out videos on advanced concepts in HTML and with my mouth agape began my introduction to Javascript.
I hated being gobsmacked like that so I headed to Freecodecamp after some digging and started a anvalanche through the HTML,CSS and Javascript sessions. However, I felt I had not really gained a real word working knowledge of these languages so I started a project of buiding a website which helped a lot and by August ,we had a challenge from which I learnt a lot(By then Pluralsight ‘had received some sense’ and rollled out beginner friendly concise videos on three languages which made you beg for more ,only for you to be redirected back with a message’This course is not part of your subscription’,business strategy right?)
I had to defer WorldQuant module two in Data Science to end of September as I wanted to devote more time to web development.

It was in August that I discovered Scrimba, a site that helped me to understand responsive web design,I had watched some Udacity and Pluralsight videos but they could not match the simplicity ,clarity and conciseness of Scimba’s videos
I had also began my foray into Node js but the pluralsight videos available threw me off as they were using Mac so I searched around a bit and found Pedro Mercado’s Node js videos on Noobcoder.com and that made want to learn all about backend.
I had to prioritize my time as I had started Andrew Ng class on Machine Learning.I wanted to quit as he pointed out that one had to use Octave /MATLAB instead of Python.I groaned inwardly ‘Oh not another language’ but I was sold quickly to Octave after my linear Algebre review(A big fat thank you to Prof Ng) and was introduced to vectorization(A mother of two partially homeschooled kids got no time to write clunky code,I am looking at you Python(just joking)).I am in week 3 and I am determined to finish the course at my own pace

You might be wondering why I am combining Data Science with Web Development. Web sites are repositories of data which can be mungled by data science tools ,you need databases stored on backend servers and you need a backend language like Node js ,PHP ,Django framework.
I chose Node js because it is just Javascript, great packages via npm and works well with Nosql databases so a win -win. I understand I have a lot to learn but with persistence, commiting to code everyday,I know by next year,I will be confident enough to apply for jobs.
In the next post,I will be writing about the Google Developer platform and how it can help you cement your skill and knowledge base of Web-based Languages.Keep coding and buiding projects

Published by maryamraji02

I am a medical doctor, a data scientist in training, a mobile web development trainee and a content writer. I am also a modern art enthusiast.

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