I got a few email over the last weeks.
“Tom. Where are you?”
“Tom I have not seen you at Code and Coffee”
“Tom. Are you alive?”
To which I answered:
“Yes I am still on earth”
“No I have not been coffeeing”
“I am alive I think…check pulse…I think so”
Why are you not attending Code and Coffee?
I have been on an all-nighter binge.
If any human goes to bed at 2am. It’s improbable they will wake up at 6am to go to a 7am meetup.
What is your work Schedule?
I am Tom.
And I am a workaholic.
About 9am to 7pm.
Then I go home and spend time with the minions.
After chasing them around I start my night shift at 10pm.
Until about 2am
What do you do at night?
Any of the following:
- Prepare exams for the team so they can improve their superpowers
- Improve my Photoshop skills…think…memes.
- Read tech news
- Read about Regex
- Work on my side projects
- Find leads
- Read programming books
- Read beer brewing books
- Read about gardening tea plants
- Think of business opportunities
- Think of startup ideas
Wow so those are a lot of things. So what is your priority?
- Study programming
- Develop products
- Find business opportunities
So it looks like they are related to making money?
Not all about making money. I want to help people get better at things. There is a lot of inefficiency in the world.
I get annoyed when somebody has an ugly website or a mobile unfriendly website.
I get stumped when someone doesn’t know how to do any of:
Maybe the reason is that I have done all this and more, while a lot of people out there have only done a few or just one.
I want to help people in areas where they are not so good at.
I want to help people to not learn from their mistakes.
Learning from mistakes is a waste of time and money.
I did a lot of this.
Why go over the same? Let me show you what NOT to do.
And you are STILL learning code (aka software development)?
When I was in college I was really bad at programming. My prerequisites included C, C ++, data structures.
I got a C in C. (Ha! this sounds funny)
I got a C- in C++
I failed data structures twice. I just couldn’t get the whole “pointers” thing.
Years passed by and I learned that I didn’t get it because it was difficult. I didn’t get it because I was not inspired.
Later on when I moved from college in Colombia to college in Miami. I had to do a senior project in Java.
Although my senior project professor was awesome. I was disgusted with Java.
Java did not inspire me.
Years passed by…
Wow you are so old…
I am not that old.
I didn’t say centuries passed by.
I said years.
Which could mean at least 2.
So years passed by.
Moved to Chicago and started working on some software projects.
A few blue screens of death.
But there was hope.
I took a 3-month programming course.
And suddenly I became inspired.
It was like I was blind before and suddenly I could see the matrix.
I didn’t get better at programming.
But I got better at “Behind the Scenes” that nobody has ever showed me before.
I also met a ton of people not only at this course but also outside at meetups.
I was inspired by the environment in Chicago.
I was inspired by Kevin Willer of 1871.
That strangers were willing to help you in some sort of pay it forward.
Although I am not a full time programmer. I enjoy getting involved in software.
I study a lot so I can keep up.
I love Vim.
I think the command line is the best way to do anything.
I love the feeling of success when solving a problem.
Mmmm. So what would you advice people that want to learn programming
In Miami there is a new coding school called Wyncode.
The teacher is Ed Toro. He is one of the smartest people alive.
The reality is that you cannot become a programmer in 3 months or 2 months or 4 months or 5 or 6.
It takes time.
Just like medical school.
Or law school.
You cannot swallow everything in a few months.
I would never a hire a 3-month programmer like a hospital would never hire a 3-month medical student.
You don’t put just anybody with little knowledge to operate on a patient.
But there is hope.
After 3 months you could:
- Keep studying day and night for 3 more months
- Study the books they study at CS schools (logics, algorithms, data structures)
- Build your own server from scratch, build a website without framework and host it there.
- Put your website on Hackernews so they can crash it.
- Ask a coding mentor or friend to give you a technical interview
- Lessons learned and loop. Learn more.
- Apply for an internship
If your goal is not becoming a programmer you could:
- Get training in project management
- Get training in web design
- Learn photoshop, illustrator and Indesign
- Learn inbound marketing
- Hustle into a job in the startup or tech industry
Coming back to you helping people. Looks to me like helping entrepreneurs.
That’s more accurate.
Will you be attending more events?
And by more. You mean attend to events. Because I have not been going to any.
Although I cannot promise the morning 7am Code and Coffee.
I might start going to WaffleWednesdays at Live Ninja.
And a few other evening events.
Will you be organizing a code retreat?
I stopped doing this event.
I didn’t do it last year.
The problem that I see in Miami is that they are not focused on quality.
Yes there are a few.
IPC, Bryce, etc.
But the majority don’t care about quality.
Code retreat is a way to get better at building quality controlled software.
The other problem is:
I was not getting better at software development. I am constantly training, studying, testing myself.
Organizing this event takes a few months of my free time.
I prefer to spend time helping people in the shorter term.
Any other questions here..a