Memories of Code at #Code9ty

It has taken me a while to get myself to stop coding and start writing this short story about my experience at #code9ty. But finally I’ve decided to take some time off from code (and other geeky stuff) just so that I can share with you something about #Code9ty. If you never heard of #code9ty, it is a coding bootcamp in Kisumu powered by LakeHub. Probably the best place to learn interactively how to code in Western Kenya!

How I learned about #Code9ty

It’s simple. I only knew about LakeHub, not #code9ty! It was during long holidays and I needed a place to go for attachment. I had probably sent about 1110 (congrats binary nerds!) applications to all kinds of firms that I thought would want to hire interns but I got no response. Then right when I was about to give up, I saw this call for applications to LakeHub from one Sigu Magwa on Facebook. Being desperate, I sent my application twice and gave him a call promising him that I would deliver my best if he accepted me into the program. (Now that I think of it I really was too desperate. Two applications and a phone call?! Woah who does that?!) A few days later I received a really casual call from the same Sigu Magwa asking me to show up at LakeHub the following Monday for an interview.

The Beginning of #Code9ty

After I was accepted, along with other interns, we were given a highlight of what the program would entail. We were going to be programming (learning and developing applications) in Ruby on Rails, and using git for version control for 90 consecutive days. This meant learning and doing something substantial every single day, for 90 days! Through git the coordinator, Sigu, would keep track of our daily progress. And by the way, that is how #Code9ty was born! Hurray!!!

A typical day of code at #Code9ty

What I Learnt at #Code9ty

After the 90 days of intensive coding and having fun, I could look back at what I had gained and feel proud. When I joined the program I could only do some basic boring HTML, but now I can develop complete responsive web applications. I can now code in Ruby and Ruby on Rails, jQuery, Foundation CSS, and Bootstrap. I also learnt some CoffeeScript and HAML while at #code9ty. The program also taught me how to write tests for my applications using minitest, rspec, capybara, and cucumber.

But most importantly, #Code9ty taught me how to use documentations — the ability to interpret then follow instructions is a key skill for any good programmer. With this priceless ability, I can now learn any other programming language by myself, with limited challenges.

It’s not just about Coding, Playing Games too!

Come on, you didn’t think it would be 90 days of only staring at your laptop screen now, did you? Everyday we would take some time away from our digital simulation beasts and just relax outside playing games! I particularly enjoyed the keep awake sessions that took place in the afternoons. ‘Akaringular’- a hybrid of a concentration and dancing game — was my favorite! The first #code9ty cohort was even named after this fun and somehow challenging game. And by the way, contrary to what you may expect, the coordinator is a very fun guy!

“Keep Awake” Session being led by Boniface

Celebrating birthdays too!

A few birthdays happened to occur during my period at #code9ty, including my own. And a heads up to anyone whose birthday happens to take place while attending #code9ty, the coordinator will probably be the first person to give you a ‘birthday shower’! I told you, he likes having fun!

Cess’ Birthday
My Birthday. Look at the smile on their faces! Hahha
Getty’s Birthday during this year’s Google Devfest Western Kenya

I am waiting on Sigu’s birthday. I need to give him a ‘birthday shower’ too.

There’s more…

We also went to a few schools during the #code9ty cohort A. Arya Primary School in Kisumu and Kisumu Girls High School are a couple of schools that we visited to interact with the kids to share with them some experiences about code.

Even after the end of the 13 weeks of code, we still keep in touch with other #code9ty and LakeHub community members. We visit different universities to teach them a few things about code and also learn from them. The fun and good memories at #Code9ty are so many that I can’t share them all here.

Like this one … a story for another day!

Boniface taking photos of an outside interaction session from a tree

I just thank LakeHub, @sigu, and other code9ty members for their support in this program. Come experience greatness in code with #Code9ty!

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