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Photo by Pathum Danthanarayana on Unsplash

This year I was very thankful that my employer Pusher sponsored my ticket to Droidcon UK 2019! These are the notes I took at the different talks I attended:

Keynote: Coding Like an Althete — Christina Lee

Christina spoke to us about the similarities between athletes and programmers (who she then refers to as Brathletes as we’re using our brains), and some things us brathletes can learn from athletes.

Things I learned:
- Programmers are more like athletes than I thought; we have team uniforms, we announce when we’re leaving and joining new teams, we get compensated $$$, our managers want to get the most out of us.
— But we don’t really have coaches :( Some companies offer nutritional coaches, but what about other crucial performance enhancing elements like sleep?
— Programmers often only get career feedback once a year — not after every game like sports people.
- The Monday Morning Quaterback — on monday they look at the game that was played on the weekend to work out everything that went wrong so they can determine which pieces they want to focus on to improve for next time.
- People don’t pursue passions, they do things they’re good at which in turn makes them happier. People who have been in a role longer tend to be happier with that role.
- Sleep is super important. After being awake for 19 hours straight you have the same symptoms as someone who is drunk.
- Flow is important for people to feel satisfied, less stressed, and perform better but our current offices and ways of working are set not set up to help this. On average people switch tasks every 10 minutes, and half of those switches are self imposed.
- 5 tips to improve things
— Make your whole day as flow — schedule time for interruptions / twitter
— Train your memory — your memory is a muscle — concentration can be grown
— Block like tasks together to minimise attention residue
— Write down unfinished tasks — make a plan on how to finish these which reduces the attention residue left by switching tasks often
— Create a shutdown ritual to transition out of work mode — free time is crucial! …


Last year I wrote a post about why I learned to crochet and why learning a new thing each year was helping me grow. For 2018 I wanted to exercise better. So how did I do?

First achievement: I actually stepped foot in a gym! I asked a personal trainer for a few sessions and actually I learned how some of the machines worked! I had major anxiety over looking stupid not knowing what to do at the gym. Or being really shit at everything and I’ve definitely conquered that fear! …


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2018 has been a HUGE year for codebar mobile!

We ran 10 workshops, 5 for Android, and 5 for iOS! This has involved the help of around 100 coach positions, for over 150 students!

Thank you to everyone who has graciously hosted us:

January @ Quander

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We started our year off at Quander for a workshop in iOS.

February @ TransferWise

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In February we were at TransferWise for an Android workshop

April @ Deliveroo

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in April we were at Delivero for our very first Kotlin workshop!

May @ Starling Bank

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in May we were at Starling Bank to do some iOS and everyone enjoyed taking home a fresh pair of Starling Socks!

June @ TrainLine

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In June we joined The Train Line for some Android!

July @ WiPro with help from DevelopHer & Lloyds Banking Group

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Probably our largest event this year! In July we joined forces with DevelopHer with WiPro Digital and Lloyds Banking Group for an iOS workshop!

August @ Twitter

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In August we were lucky to be hosted at Twitters UK offices for some more Android development!

September @ Deloitte Digital

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In September we joined Deloitte Digital for some iOS development and we tried very hard not to play with all their robots and 3D printers!

October @ TheAppBusiness

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In October we joined The App Business for some more iOS engineering!

November @ SkyScanner

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The final event for this year, we were at Skyscanner’s offices to build some Android apps!

Thank you to all the coaches who gave up their evening to help our students learn something new.

Thank you to all the students, who even after a long day of doing their regular day came to learn something new and challenged themselves!

Thank you to everyone who left feedback this year, without it we wouldn’t have made things better! …


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I really love attending Droidcon London every year, and this year was awesome! Each year is an opportunity to learn new things and experience new and interesting ideas from other Android programmers. So here’s some of the things I wrote down, maybe they’ll be useful for you too!

Applications Should Be For Everyone. It’s In Your Hands

Britt walked us through why and how she built an App for her Nana where she could take a picture of something, such as a tub of ice cream and it would say what was in the picture. …


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image from https://unsplash.com/photos/YfpP8_IxKmQ

I’ve written a bunch already on how and why I teach people to code. This article going to be more of a tutorial on something to code!

This is my favourite activity for introducing people to writing code; building our very own emoji! We’ll use Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) and animate it with JavaScript (JS). They’re the same building blocks that make up webpages!

This tutorial will take about an hour, but you could take a *lot* more time making your emoji yours if you’ve got the time! I had one student who spent an entire semester of after school clubs working on their emoji. …


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Last week I was lucky to attend International Womens Day through Women Techmakers hosted at Google UK. I also finished reading the book “To sell is human” by Daniel Pink. These two things shared surprisingly similar themes and learnings around leadership that I thought were important to share!

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“Several people fist bumping over a busy workspace” by rawpixel.com on Unsplash

Making your partner look good

No, I don’t just mean a relationship partner, but anyone you interact with.

The premise of this is found in improv too. The worst thing you can do in improv when working with someone is to reject their previous statement. …


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Last year I started a new tradition; I’d learn one new thing a year.

Many people pick up hobbies and skills and quit as soon as it gets difficult. With the “one new thing a year” theory, it forces me to push through the hard starting bit, and spend real effort getting better.

This year, I attempted to learn to crochet! I saw an image for a beautiful crochet blanket online and figured I could make that.

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Some practice hexagons I made.

Learning something new each year teaches me it’s okay to suck at something. With deliberate practice and actual effort I can learn to become good. …


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A long time ago, I wrote a blog post introducing the concept of an API; what it is, some examples, and how you might use one. However, I didn’t show you how to actually use one in code! This blog post will help you get started using JavaScript and Giphy to display cat gifs.

Setting up

I’m going to be using a website called JSFiddle to write and test my project. JSFiddle allows me to show the code I’ve written, without any of the boiler plate code of a HTML page, or including the JavaScript file. …


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Last week I was lucky to attend Google io for the first time. It would be impossible for me to write down all the awesome things that happened, so here’s a couple of things I learned :-)

1. Keynote(s)

This year there were two keynotes, one for product and one for development, although apparently most people joining remotely didn’t know about the second!

My favourite thing they announced were the updates to Google Photos. I can now share everything or photos that contain specific people automatically with people I specify. I can review photos people share with me, and if I like add them to my own library! …


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Recently, a group of us got together at comparethemarket.com to look at how we can improve things at work, and how we can help attract more awesome people to join us!

On Friday the 17th March, we ran our first tech ambassador retro as we had a bunch of things to decide on. The first of these was our elevator pitch, or how we explain to other people what it is we do. After some deliberation, we decided on facilitating inwardly and talking externally about ctm things in tech.

Danielle Emma Vass

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