Andela ALC, an EPIC journey…

I started learning how to program early this year - January, to be specific. There were so many languages, so many stacks, ends (front and back) and so many options to pick from, it was a mad house. I was pretty confused so I told myself "Start somewhere, Zee, anywhere, take every opportunity you get, decide on the paths to take as you go by elimination, and give your all to whatever you settle on".

Fast forward to March, and I applied for the Andela Android Learning Community program (beginner’s track). To be fair, I had zero interest in Android, I’d never even thought about mobile development but hey, this was an Andela programme, sponsored by Google and Udacity! For someone that was planning to take every opportunity they got, I jumped on it and applied.

When I received a mail that I had been chosen, I was excited. I truly needed a break from JavaScript because I’d been stuck for days. I didn’t know what to expect but when I started the Udacity course, I knew that was it! The videos were so explanatory, and the tutors (Katherine, Kunal, and Lyla) were amazing. They broke down Java to the very bits and carried us along all the way.

I put all my energy in it, and I was even appointed a team lead in the North Central region, Nigeria.

Now, let’s do challenges, unsteady electricity supply and slow internet were the top culprits (side eye to glo). I however pulled off some pretty awesome things with xml and java; a coffee ordering app that connects the customer to a coffee shop, a score tracker that records the scores between 2 teams in a baseball game and a simple quiz app.

On the 17th of June, we had one last meet up at Andela, and it was very inspiring. Some hot shots from Andela HQ gave really insightful talks on the next steps to becoming better developers, and we partook in a hackathon (I’d never participated in a hackathon before that day!). For the hackathon, we were grouped into teams and we had 2 hours to come up with an app idea and build it. I led my team, and it was crazy, it was fast.

After pondering for minutes, we came up with an app idea - Budgit! It’s a single screen app that calculates how much of a student’s allowance should go into important things like feeding, transport, savings etc.
The app looks like this;

Though the percentages were pre-allocated in the app we built (due to time constraint), my team is currently optimising the UI, and building flexibility into the app to allow the users set percentages as they wish. Hopefully, we’ll get it right, I can’t wait to put up something good on my Github. Whoop!

My team won the hackathon by the way, we were judged based on UI, modularity, documentation, semantics and execution. The entire Andela experience was an altogether fun and enlightening one, and I feel like I can only get better from here. Next stop for me? Multi-screen apps and maybe, just maybe I might pick up on Kotlin.

Thank you, Andela!

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