30 Day Coding Challenge & Personal Update 2020

I live in a part of the UK that has been under restrictions since March (with a few unrestricted weeks at the beginning of Summer) due to Coronavirus. When October kicked in my mood went a little bit bleaker as the light summer months had been and gone, darker days where setting in and sadly infection / deaths linked to Coronavirus were on the increase. I also got the nagging feeling in my head that in recent months I had stopped doing what I originally set out with this website – coding. I also realised that I don’t think I have done a personal update since November 2018.

The personal update:  I highly recommend that people blog about their tech / digital journey, as geektechstuff.com has over the last 3 years given me opportunities to share my passion about technology and the personal projects I have worked on. It has also helped me to articulate ideas, improved my communication skills and even helped me learn (writing down a learning in your own words helps to re-enforce it). Somewhere in all the fun of 2019 I successfully applied for a role working with more Linux based systems, and I’m really enjoying it.

I decided to correct my lack of recent personal coding by signing up to CodeAcademy Pro and taking the 30-Day challenge, which is basically doing some coding each day for 30 days. As the JavaScript category of geektechstuff.com (https://geektechstuff.com/category/javascript/) is a little light I decided to complete the challenge using JavaScript as my preferred language.

I started off refreshing the basics by taking the “Learn JavaScript” course (https://www.codecademy.com/learn/introduction-to-javascript) which covers Conditionals, Functions, Scope, Arrays, Loops, Iterators, Objects, Classes, Modules, Promises, Async-Await, Requests and even Transpilation. I won’t lie, after the first few modules I did feel like some of the material was new to me (or that I had forgotten about it). I grabbed my copies of “JavaScript & JQuery” (Duckett) and “Eloquent JavaScript” (Haverbeke) from the bookcase to assist. Both books vary in how they teach but both offer explanations and descriptions that compliment the CodeAcademy course (later on I found that both books are referenced in the “Back-End Engineer” pathway).

I completed the 30 hour “Learn JavaScript” course and continued on into the “Back-End Engineer” pathway, now wanting to learn more about node.js, RESTful APIs and Test Driven Development (TDD). Currently I’m 23% complete on that pathway and the alert has popped up to tell me that I’ve completed the 30-day challenge. I’ve used my previous learnings/experience to reinstall node.js onto a Raspberry Pi and have nginx set up serving some basic webpages from it so that i can play around in my own little sandbox. I don’t know where my JavaScript learning will take me but I’m having fun and these autumn 2020 nights no longer seem so bleak.

I can’t promised that my site will see loads more JavaScript blog posts or projects but I will give it a shot. Here’s to the next 30-days of coding, with maybe one or two evenings off for some Star Wars Squadrons.

If you would like to learn more about CodeAcademy (they offer free and pro courses) then please visit: https://www.codecademy.com/ , alternatively there is also FreeCodeCamp via https://www.freecodecamp.org/