React 16.8 was released in February of 2019. With it brought the introduction of hooks. Hooks now make it possible for us to control state, in addition to other features, within a functional component. Gone are the days of having to convert our functional component to a class component just because we want a little self contained state.

You might be saying to yourself ‘yeah yeah I know all about hooks, where have you been? This blog post is late’. Please stick around cause this time we are going to talk about a hook that might be a little more…


I can assure you I asked myself that same question. Back when I was a student with an online coding bootcamp one of their requirements was to write multiple blog posts. Initially I hated the idea.

I’ll be the first to admit I’m far from a writer. I’m in no way illiterate but writing just doesn’t come natural. You should see how long it has taken me to write this article. In addition to writers block, coming up with dev ideas to write about that people want to read and learn, these have only added to the time and stress…


There are plenty of data structures in the wild. With some languages having many. While other languages needing us to build some from scratch. So why are there so many data structures out there?

A data structure is a data organization, management, and storage format that enables efficient access and modification.

Looks like it all comes down to organizing and storing data in a way that increases efficiency while speeding up access time. But this article isn’t a deep dive into why we need data structures or how they are saved into memory.

This time we will be covering Python…


The thought behind classes in most programming languages is universal. However, the structure of the class itself is what may change between languages. Even Javascript with ECMAScript 2015 saw fit to include classes, but really we all know that is a bunch of syntactic sugar.

If you can understand classes in one programming language, then in a relatively short period of time you will grasp classes in a different language.

You have probably heard this before, but the easiest way to think of a class is to look at it like a blueprint.

But a blueprint for what you might…


What happens when a function calls itself?

Photo by Ira Mint on Unsplash

What is the deal with calling the same function inside of itself, and how does the return at the beginning of the called function work? Doesn’t that just return outside of the function? It really took me a minute to fully wrap my mind around how it worked, but once I did, it all made sense.

By the end of this piece, we’ll have covered how recursion works, looked at examples of recursion, and also looked at a popular programming algorithm that uses recursion. So let’s get started.

What is Recursion?

First, let’s check the fancier definition of recursion: Recursion is a technique…


It’s easy to get settled into a way of thinking. Maybe it’s time that holds you back, or lack of desire. But if you’re like me, you are an unseasoned developer and you just haven’t got to it yet because of how much you’re already learning. Obviously that’s no excuse but sometimes it’s just what happens.

That being said let’s talk a little bit about React’s render.props. I will reference React’s tutorial throughout this blog. So personally, I had never used render.props before. It wasn’t until I received a code challenge, from a hiring company, that I really even…


So this isn’t a blog on whether your app needs to utilize Redux or not. There is plenty of those out there. This is actually about my recent experience with using Redux to control my Jeopardy app’s state. Redux is great but can be very frustrating when trying to return state properly.

Redux is a great way to control your app’s state at any given time. Redux works with React or any other view library. I’ll be referencing Redux’s online tutorial throughout. Here is the link. Their tutorial is well written and easy to understand.

So here is a…


I could feel the pitchforks being sharpened as I used my React form component to control it’s own local state inside of my Redux app. To purist’s isn’t that the convention? You either allow Redux’s store to manage your apps entire state or you don’t at all! There is no middle ground. Right?

This was the exact dilemma I was in as I was deciding how to handle my component’s state. I wasn’t a 100% sure yet what I needed to include inside my app’s state. So I started with keeping it self contained. …


While in the process of creating a Jeopardy app I decided I wanted to do more then just show a written clue for a category. I realized I wanted to use text-to-speech read back of the displayed clue. But there is a lot of different options when it comes to this. There is the obvious choice of IBM Watson. But I felt that it was a little to robust for my needs. So I decided to incorporate ResponsiveVoice.js.

So next step how do I incorporate it inside my React project. So I found a ResponsiveVoice package that I probably…


Coding challenges are almost a right of passage to developers. Ask any developer you know if they have ever completed a code challenge. Most likely 100% of them will say yes and absolutely on more than one occasion. So that’s what we will do with this blog post.

We will discuss two challenges from a Udemy course. You can find this course here. The other challenge we will discuss I was asked through a technical review. Let’s get started.

The first question asked:

given an input of an array, make a function that sorts the values but also when…

Brett Cole

Full Stack Developer. Husband. Father. You can reach out to me and check out recent work at https://codercalledcole.com

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store