Day 24 Presentation Day

Day 24 and today was presentation day! Pretty much everyone in class stayed up really late coding last night. I’m pretty sure one of my mates actually pulled an all nighter. If there’s one common theme among our class so far it’s hard work. Everyone in the class takes this program very seriously and the work ethic that our group has is pretty amazing.

When I got in this morning I was thinking that I might write some unit tests for the existing functionality that my app has. Writing tests after the fact definitely goes against the principles of TDD, but mostly I just wanted the practice. Presentations were at 1:00 pm though and I didn’t end up having time to write any tests. I helped a couple of classmates finish up a few last minute touches and then deployed my project. I tried to grab lunch with my wife before the presentation, but SXSW started today and it took forever to get my food so that didn’t really work out either. I got back just in time for the presentations.

We went in alphabetical order for our presentations. I was closer to the end so I got to watch most of my mates present before my turn came around. I was so impressed with every single project that my classmates presented. Everyone’s projects were really great, and it was evident that everyone had learned a ton in this first quarter of the program. When my turn came around the presentations had been going on for a really long time so I tried to make my presentation quick. I ran through the demo of the game and gave a brief overview of my code. There were several questions from the audience which was really fun. Overall I felt like the presentation went well.

After everyone finished presenting there was a happy hour event for the data science class that graduated tonight. Everyone headed downstairs to have drinks and relax after a long hard week of projects. I hadn’t had a chance to eat my lunch yet though so I stayed back and sat down by myself to eat my lunch. I spent some time reflecting on the last week and everything that I’ve learned in Q1. I really felt inspired and motivated by the progress that I’ve made so far. I also had a moment where I thought I can’t believe that this is already a fourth of the way over. It has literally gone by so fast! It’s hard to believe how much progress we have all made in such a short time. I feel so empowered by the knowledge that I’m gaining throughout this process. I am realizing how much I love to learn how things work. I’m also realizing how much I really enjoy the creative freedom that this industry offers. Every program is unique and interesting in it’s own way. Every new challenge is a chance to express your own creativity in solving it. Every day is a chance to get better. That’s why I wanted to make this career change. It’s the challenge that every project presents that I really love. Once you solve a problem the joy that you have makes all of the struggle worth and it makes you want to do it again. It makes me feel the same way playing golf does. I don’t play often, but when I do I get so frustrated. Then I will hit a great shot and it feels so good coming off of the club. I watch it fly through the air with great joy. Those one or two moments are the reason that I keep trying again.

Now that project week is over we actually have a week off. I’m excited to do some reading this week and unplug a little bit. I definitely want to stay sharp and work on some things that need improvement, but I’m going to be intentional about taking some time off as well. I think that balance is really important. If you want to check out my project and play some Simon you can do that at retrosimon.surge.sh. It works best in the chrome browser for both desktop and mobile. I’m going to try to post a couple of blogs this week as well, but it won’t be every day. I’ll keep you posted on what I’m reading and learning over the break. Stay tuned for more info on that…

24 down 76 to go!

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