Today I worked on some coding early in the morn. I didn't really feel like making the decision to work on something wholesome and original so I just followed along in my book Impractical Python. Sometimes it's good to follow along with tutorials or books. It takes the strain off of you to create something original or find something you're passionate about and code about it. That last italicized phrase is something I find in the answer to every "how to learn how to code" question I see.
Find something you're passionate about and program about it.
I'm passionate about being a great programmer and solving super hard problems, as a self taught programmer and kind of a newb sometimes, how do I solve really hard problems?
The answer is you don't. Also I'm passionate about learning. I really started coding to learn more faster. Read that as - learn more, faster.
Learning to program is never ending constant learning. That's pretty meta sports fans.
I guess my logic with following a tutorial is that I want some insight into solving problems from a real live programmer with enough grit to write a book about it. But also working on your own stuff is hard. Somedays I don't really feel like breaking all my perfectly working programs to make them better or more efficient (read this last sentence with a pinch of sarcasm around the words "perfectly working").
What really ate up my time today was applying to a job. Not that it was an all day process but I, just like everyone else ever HATE writing cover letters. Most of the time I just submit my resume without a cover letter if it's optional morely so I can say I applied to something that day.
However, today the application to this job had nicely laid out bullet points on what they wanted to see in your cover letter. Jobs like that I apply to instantly. It means the company actually knows what it's looking for and that I'm not shooting in the dark about what to write my cover letter about. If it's not clear how I'm supposed to express myself to get the job, I'll just write a blob of professional sounding mumbo jumbo garbage heap sentences that will definitely not speak to who I am as a person. Honestly though, if you're a person with a company out there posting vague job application descriptions and hoping to find some stellar candidate, you'll just get some vague person who can write a boring enough cover letter that gets through your application software.
Companies are like "hey we're super interesting, here's our super uninteresting run-of-the-mill application process." The only reason I have the freelance gig I have now was because I was free to write an informal email to my now manager. I didn't even introduce myself until halfway into the email. That email was dripping with attitude.
I dunno. Sometimes these posts are about code but mostly I use it to vent about the little things in the day vaguely connected to programming.
Here's the final point. I ask dumb questions becuase questions need to be asked, dumb or not. It takes me a while to learn things because I'm not a chess playing IBM machine. Multitaksing is not a real thing. I make mistakes, misinterpret communiques from my coworkers but I love more than anything to take processes that are slow and clunky and cut out the fat. My dream job is automating myself out of a job which I think should be the end goal of any position.
Alright. Since you stuck around I'll put a bit of code here. The tutorial I worked on today was checking a list of words to see which ones are palindromes.
word = 'cat' word[::-1]
Wow it's backerds. Now try this on for size.
words = 'Civic Kayak Level Racecar Wow Tacocat' words[::-1].lower()
'tacocat wow racecar level kayak civic'
Tacocat is tacocaT backwards.
That sound? It's the sound of your mind being blown. You're welcome.