Day 2 was another exciting day where I feel simultaneously in my element and out of my depth!
As is the norm at DBC, I was paired with a new person for the entire day, and got to learn all over again how to work with someone new to create a lot of code and work through a bunch of problems. I learned that a personal weakness of mine is trying to talk through a problem before I’ve fully collected my thoughts. Once I slow down, realize it’s okay to spend a couple minutes being calm and collecting myself, I’m a much more effective pair and we get through our puzzles a lot sooner.
Day 2 of bootcamp brought us our first breakout session on engineering empathy. We had an interesting, mostly student run discussion about sexism in the tech industry and why it was a problem. I’ve been interested in the gender gap in STEM fields for a long time, so I appreciated the talk, but I would have preferred it to be less based on personal anecdotes from the group and more based on research surrounding women in the field and how girls are educated in STEM. Students at Dev Bootcamp tend to be pretty data minded people, and there is some compelling evidence out there that sexism in the industry is a problem. I feel like our discussion could have used more something more to illuminate the scope of the problem.
There are only three girls in my cohort of nineteen and we did a lot of the talking. It was nice to open the door to that conversation, but I would have liked to hear more from the men in our group what their thoughts were. I felt like I talked a little too much (whoops).
My triumph of the day:
I was able to create a method that takes a word and returns the Pig Latin-ized version of the word in A Single Line of Code. I have a newfound respect for the power of regex!
Yesterday was my first day at Dev Bootcamp Chicago. I’m not really sure how to describe it. It was like the first day of school, starting summer camp, and, well, coding boot camp, all rolled up into one day.
We started off with an incredibly warm welcome. All of the new students met current students and staff in a quickfire round of introductions, and the current students shared “Tweet-sized pieces of advice.” Some of them were extremely helpful (“You don’t only have to look to instructors from help. Learn from your fellow students.”) Some of the advice was less than helpful (“You can sleep when you’re done with Dev Bootcamp. Study all night while you’re here.”) Then all the new students shared something quirky about themselves (me: I’ve keep a running list of every book I’ve read since 1998). As fun as this all was, it certainly didn’t feel like bootcamp.
But after all the touchy-feely stuff we jumped right into our code. Dev Bootcamp has its students code in pairs through the entire day. It’s incredibly intense to work with a single person for up to twelve hours. I was amazed at how quickly I learned to adapt to my partner’s communication style and learned to adapt the way I explained things so that we could work together more efficiently. I’d done some remote guided pairing sessions through Google Hangout, but it really doesn’t compare to working that closely and intensely with someone for an extended period of time.
My triumph of the day:
One of our challenges was to create a working arabic numeral to roman numeral converter. Not only did we manage to get it done, but we did it pretty quickly. Although I think this problem will pale in comparison to a lot of what I’ll do in the coming weeks, it felt like a pretty big thing to accomplish for my first day.
Over a million people have lost their extended unemployment benefits as of the end of 2013, and another 2.5 million are about to over the next few months. Perhaps our priorities are upside down?
People ask me all the time why we don’t have a revolution in America, or at least a major wave of reform similar to that of the Progressive Era or the New Deal or the Great Society.
Middle incomes are sinking, the ranks of the poor are swelling, almost all the economic gains are…
I love how women will tell guys “no uterus, no opinion” but only when the guy disagrees with them. Men are allowed to have an opinion when they agree. So much for equality.
it’s almost like we don’t want other people dictating what happens to our bodies but appreciate people who support our right to autonomy