The Education of a Programmer (Me)

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Month: January, 2014

Stretching the limits

Well, this has certainly been a busy week for me. I’ve been working on the intranet site. I’m cleaning up the smaller pages before deploying them. I’ve also started the framework for the new version of the Hot Calls program. I’m going to use Entity Framework 5 and ODP.NET this time around. I can’t really use EF in the logic portion, but I should still be ok. I’m trying to work out whether I can stack multiple queries in the same method so I don’t have to have 11, but can shrink it down to 5.

Also started working with PowerShell to create a shell program which would allow me to help a co-worker with a batch extraction of SP2007 lists to be upgraded to work in SP2013. That’s going to be interesting because I haven’t worked that much in PowerShell, but with my Linux background, I should eventually grab on pretty well.

I took the first half of the A+ exam yesterday and passed it, so I have to finish stuff off for the second half and take it. That keeps me fairly on pace for class and means I’m going to make most of my goals for this period. YAY!!!

Well, that’s the quiet life of a programmer for now. Back to the books and the work for me!

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Goals for 2014

Ok, I am going to do this post, along side everyone else who does it at some point around the new year. If you’ve been reading this, you know I do a lot of book reviews. Well, I need to change that a little bit. I need to start writing more about how I’m getting from point A to point B in my career as a professional programmer. At the same time, I have to do what all programmers should do and work on my skills to increase my abilities and my value as a programmer overall. So, with that in mind, I’m setting out a list of goals for 2014 and expecting that I will blog more about it as I go along.

1. Continue my degree course. I’ve been in school so long these days, I’ve become convinced I won’t get out of school. Well, all kidding aside, I’m around midway through my first term at Western Governor’s. I enjoy it and I’m seeing good progress, so I need to get moving faster in my mind. 

2. Learn a new programming language. I’ve heard it said many many times that if you want to get better as a programmer, learn a new language and  preferably something outside your comfort zone. Well, I need to learn two languages for the degree above: Java and Perl. So somewhere in there, I should start getting a jump on things and work my way into this.

3. Rebuild my current codebases. This is a punt as this is already planned for this year. I’m almost done with one site’s re-write and soon I’m going to do the other re-write and then re-do the major project. Really, I’m doing this because I know what I wrote works, but it’s not the cleanest or most efficient way of doing things, so I want to get better and if getting better means doing full re-writes, then so be it.

4. Write more websites. I have a list of sites I could be building or should have built by now, so it’s time to start scratching them off the list and getting stuff done. Take a couple of those sites and use them as portfolio pieces where I can show off, because I already know the customer needs on them and in those cases the customer doesn’t really worry about web presence, so it’s really a playground for me.

5. Blog once a week. Most days, I don’t know if anyone actually ever reads this, but if I want people to read it, I need to write more often. So I’m going to commit to at least one post a week so I can start writing enough to get attention and hopefully keep an audience. It’s my fault that this blog seems to languish at times, so I am the only one who can fix it.

Well, that’s a lot for one programmer this year, so it’s time to get cracking. See you soon!