NEXT TERM & Math

What’s Happening Next Term

ponder

At this point, my plans for the fall term are up in the air. I really wanted to take at least 3 classes, but I would have to get all my classes online. My fiance has started going to nursing school at Kaplan College, and she will need to use the car. We only have one vehicle right, and one income, mine. I have to be very strategic about my class selection.

Her schooling takes priority over mine, as she is in an accelerated program, and she is very likely to get a decent paying job at the completion of her studies. I had promised that I would support her during this journey by taking care of the bills and leaving her alone when she studies :-)

I started school, because I need to improve myself as well. My first couple go-rounds at school yielded lackluster results. Mostly because my heart wasn’t in it. I’m on this warpath to computer programming greatness! I am very excited about the possibilities. In my research, I discovered that it can be helpful to have a higher level of math knowledge under my belt.

Unfortunately, I did rather poorly on the Math Compass exam. This left me only the option to take basic math to start. I’m not about that life. I don’t want to waste time or money on a basic math class when I know I can do better and test out of it. I will be using the time between now and about early October to beef up my math skills so I can take the Compass again. I want to ultimately get to at least Calc-2. Engineering has been on my radar for quite some time now. I would be looking into graduate programs for that step. That would require way more math than I know now.

I bought a college math prep book from Half-Price Books over the weekend. The content is a little too basic, but still very helpful. I have been using Khan Academy also, but I wanted a learning method that kept me offline. I get distracted by the internet WAY too easily. I think 7-8 weeks of studying for an hour or so a day will have me plenty prepared for the placement test in the Fall.

My perspective class schedule should include an intro to Web Development class. I should be able to do pretty well in that class, because I have been learning web dev on my own for a couple years now. However, I really hope it does challenge me to grow. I want to get better. I had a Visual Basic class on my schedule, but I’m not sure if I can do it, because I have to go to campus for part of it. Finally, I am currently waitlisted for an intro to Linux class. I am hella excited about that class. I really want to get to know Linux better. I think it would make me quite a valued programmer.

I will let you all know what I finally decide upon in a couple weeks.

Finals Week-Zillow Presentation

Got a Grade of 110% For My Presentation on Zillow

 

I wanted to share my PowerPoint presentation on Zillow that I did for my intro to computer science class. This is a completely watered down version of my PowerPoint for my intro to Computer Science class.  I kicked butt, and got 110% for my final grade.  I was pretty happy with my presentation.  I gave out prizes at the end for answering trivia questions.

I am not a PowerPoint ninja, but this came out all right for having done most of it in one day.  I was completely stressed through the process, because I wanted to not bore my classmates to death.

My slides lack words.  I was trying desperately to follow the rules of great PP presentations in that type should be big and not much of it. The presentation by itself, doesn’t really read very well.  It’s much better with me talking through it.

Looking at my classmates’ work, I  saw some strong points to their presentations.  I should have covered  a couple open positions in detail.  In general, I should have focused more on what the company is looking for in it’s talent.  I almost want to do it over again.  I said almost.

As a part of my presentation I actually made business cards that listed me as a regional recruiter.  I don’t even think Zillow has something like that.  They must get a ton of applications all the time.  I must have given out only about a dozen or so of the cards.  I don’t think my classmates were terribly impressed by the effort I put into these extras.  I also made a really nice Zillow t-shirt with a shirt I bought from Wal-Mart and some acrylic paint.  Cutting out circles with an Exacto knife is a pain in the rear.

zillow_biz_card
Zillow Business Card courtesy of Staples

Well, this is the last week of the summer session, and I think I have done pretty darn well.  I still have some work to do for my networking class, but I should finish up strong there too.

 

TV I can learn from…

Mr Robot
Mr Robot USA Network

Sometimes I think I watch too much TV.  I don’t watch a lot of different things, but rather a lot of the same few programs.  My cable is typically on ESPN, Cartoon Network or HGTV during the day.  At night, unless there is an NBA game on, it’s usually on Adult Swim.  I do however, have some favorite shows outside of those channels.  These shows actually help me with my school work and career goals.

Halt and Catch Fire  AMC

Mr. Robot USA

Silicon Valley  HBO

All of those shows are 5 stars, top notch, highly entertaining programming.  But also damn educational!  I think it’s so cool that computer programming is made to look so sexy in these shows.  I get motivated to be a better developer, and I gain inspiration from shows like this.  Watching Mr. Robot has stoked an interest in network security and hacking.  I never thought that would be my thing, but I am totally fascinated by the subject matter.  So much so that I am considering shifting my focus towards network security rather than application development.

I have fickle tastes, and this may change.  I plan to take more networking and Linux classes to really see if this is where I want to be in the future.

I absolutely recommend these shows for anyone to watch, even if you are not interested in computers like me.  They are just really fun to watch.

Half Way There

The summer session is short, and I a bit more than half-way done.  I have already taken midterms for both of my classes.  I am currently taking the following classes:

Intro To Local Area Networks

Intro to Computer Science

I want to say that both are fairly easy classes, but that is due in part to my experience with computers.  I’ve been working with computer technologies on an intermediate level for a number of years.  This stems from my experience in retail sales with Best Buy and Verizon Wireless.  I also know a lot from fixing my personal computers and just tinkering around with them.

I have helped thousands of people with their computer problems, which has helped me learn a ton about how computers work.  I am really enjoying being in school.  That’s new for me.  Which is weird, because I went to school for art, but I hated my first college experience so very much.  I love to draw, but I hate going to school for it.  It completely took the fun out of it.

I find myself to be more competitive now.  I participate a lot more than I did my previous educational experiences.  I have more confidence.  I feel more at home than I did in art school.

Well , there are approximately 4 weeks left in this summer term.  I’m going to post some info on the projects I’m working on here soon.

Welcome!

  • Zillow
  • Epic Games
  • Comixology

As of now, those are the top companies I would like to work for.  I have lofty career goals, but I think those are a good start.

So , I’m going to use this blog to document my progress and journey to awesome web developer!  I am back at school, in the computer science path to Associate of Science at Sacramento City College.  I love it!  It has been so long since I enjoyed school.  I absolutely love the feeling of accomplishment I get out of doing good work for my classes.

I am quite poor at the moment, so I can only afford a couple classes at a time.  Plus, I work full-time and get overtime whenever I can.  This doesn’t leave much time for studies.  So far I have been balancing my time exceptionally!

Next term I’m taking on three classes.  Most are online, which makes my time management much easier.  It’s also easier on gas.  Driving 40 miles a day can get costly.

I didn’t want to give you guys too much right away.  I will try to post the projects I am working on for class and other things I feel interested in writing about.  I hope you come back often to check on me.