TABLE OF CONTENT
- The Prodeus Experience
- My Quest for an oustanding portfolio
- The not so little side project - Rosaliss
- VGA/Gamespeak Time
- If you can't beat them, join them - Data structures and algorithms
- The way of life - Continous learning, steady growth, no need to rush
- This year 2023
Recently, I read a couple of "year in review" from other people and it dawned on me to do mine.
- Reviews give us an opportunity to look back at what has happened, which would then inform us on what to correct or what exactly to continue.
- Even though a review can be done without writing about it, writing gives one some sort of storage, where one can then go back to in the future to read and look at how far one has come.
- Finally, sharing that write up with the world could also help another individual in their own journey, who knows ?
Though this is a year in review, I would be focusing the write up mainly on my tech career. Hence the title "2022 Tech year in review"
Prior to this year, there was no time where I didnt have at least 2 jobs I was working on, so my work life balance was in shambles.
But not this year, I accepted the fate of having a
low income and more time at hand to fix the necessary things that were important to me in my personal life.
So as much as I might want to add a "bad" expereince to this write up to give it a "good to bad ratio" for the year, I don't really have one, as you would be amazed how
slowing down helps one to make right decisions.
I pretty much started the year in high spirits working for Prodeus Organization. It was so amazing, we had just shipped out the basic features of the product and our user base was growing, but just like every other startup we needed to have features that users could pay for, in other to generate more funds.
This led to the development of the Organization specific features on the platform. With such sophisticated, yet easy to use functionality, I was challenged to improve more in my frontend expertise, due to how involved the features were.
(PS. The Organzation features are still free at the moment 😅, so you can check them out)
The inclusion of the organization features, meant that Prodeus was going to be able to function in 3 modes.
- Normal User mode
- Organization Admin/Manager mode
- Organization Student mode
I saw myself having to make numerous pages have the ability to function differently based on the various modes which made the app codebase and requirements really grow.
A lot of time, you hear the phrase
scalable code, trust me, this becomes very paramount when the codebase, functionality, features and requirements become very large.
Being the main Engineer in charge of the frontend, the onos was on me to ensure that the codebase was scalable and also easy to onboard new developers (mind you, the application was also going to be in dark mode, so all the pages had to be dark mode compatible).
At the end of the day, before pushing out the Organization features, the application had a total of about
59 pages with 20 of those pages having 3 unique views, based on the mode you are viewing the application,
14 unique modals and users can view all of these in both light and dark mode.
I Really did enjoy working and building all these features at Prodeus and I actively use Prodeus for my own learning.
You can see my Prodeus streak in my Prodeus profile here David Obodo's profile
I definitely recommend Prodeus to help with learning, especially if you use Youtube videos to learn a lot.
Have you ever browsed through awwwards and you see some really stunning portfolio, and just think, "how on earth did they do that?"
I knew I wanted a portfolio to showcase how much I have grown over the years. Since my previous portfolios didn't really do justice to that, I set out to build a new version.
I am not an expert designer, but I sure do know how to cook up something decent, because I have been "forced 😅" to work in design capacity in some of my previous roles. However, my design skills were not up to the standard of those portfolios on awwwards.
I recall writing an article about my portfolio journey here.
So I was left with two choices:
- Pay a highly professional designer to give me the "acrobatics" that I wanted.
- Patiently take the time to design it myself.
At the end of the day, I went ahead with option 2. I don't think I had much of a choice, since at that time I didn't really have enough cash to afford a top notch designer (recall earlier on I said this year was about less income and more time to figure out myself).
This decision would go on to cost me about 9months of design and about 5 different design iterations 😂.
Wait a minute!!!
Just Wait 🤣!!!
In my defence, it took this much time because I wasn't doing it full time, as I had other side projects I was working on at various times, hence the long time span.
Well at the end of the day, I was satisifed with my final iteration as at September.
Coding up the entire thing was just like any other project and I enjoyed every bit of it. By the way, GSAP has excellent documentation, so it was really easy to implement the animation ideas I had in my head.
For a while now, I have been on fixed contracts on Upwork, and so my job count was static since I was basically doing work for just one company.
So I decided to just take on a challenge and add more jobs. As perfect timing would have it, I got a full stack e-commerce platform contract.
In this project, my speed did surprise me honestly, as I was able to deliver all the requirements on both the frontend and backend just around 6 weeks.
The client sure was definitely happy. My contract didn't involve me hosting and publishing the site, so I can't provide a live link for you to view.
Around April, one of my mentors, Michael Paccione recommended me for an hourly contract project to build a platform called Gamespeak.
I said yes to the project because I still needed time to finish my portfolio and to gain the balanced life style that I said I wanted.
This required I had ample time on my hands which only a contract role could give me.
Right from then up till December we have been building. Honestly, I believe if it were a full time contract, we would have been done by now, but since its an hourly contract it definitely takes more time, due to everyone having other committments.
Gamespeak would be launcing this month, and I am really excited that people get to test and use this awesome platform that we have been building.
If I am being honest, the remuneration for tech roles is what propelled me to choose this carrer path. I love the fact that "your progree is literarily in your hands". If you skill up, you are definitely going to get paid more. Unlike some other professions where you might need to do some eye service in order to get promotion or higher pay.
There are even professions/Jobs that despite all your hardwork you might not get promoted or get higher pay, its simply just unfair.
"But no, not tech. If you are skilled you would definitely get your reward. It's solely based on merit".
However, even though that was my main motivation, I would not lie that recently I have really started enjoying developing projects and working with amazing people.
Even though the money is still important, I would walk away from any environment that I perceive to be toxic.
Anyways that aside, because the money is what propelled me to join tech, I never did settle down to learn DATA STRUCTURES and ALGORITHMS, which is pretty much the foundation of all tech. I rememeber one project manager I had one time used to say
"Programming Languages would come and go, but Data Structures and Algorithms would forever be the same".
Even with this, I never did make out time for it, solely because I was with those who had the school of thought that such shouldn't be asked during interviews, when we all know that's not how the real life day to day work is.
You know the funny thing about complaining, sometimes it does nothing 😂. Even if people complain about it, the fact remains that if you want to get into any big tech company or assume some critical roles in some firms, you need to know Data structures and Algorithms.
knowing this, I knew that since its not going to change, why not just create time to learn it.
For if you can't beat them join them
I must confess that it's been really awesome learning it. My approach to the way I write code now takes things like time complexity and space complexity into account, which is a good thing.
This year I had a lot of time to myself like I have constantly pointed out throughout this article, which gave me the opportunity to really learn and ask some key questions to myself.
I have learnt that there's no need to rush, one just has to consistently learn and improve on something and by default, after a while, you become good at it.
I know last year ended with the introduction of CHATGPT, and a lot of people started talking about Artificial Intelligence taking developer jobs and all that. However, even if that would occur, I believe that no matter how automated a system can get, we would still need some human input in order to control those machines.
So that's where I would be.
growing to suite whatever scenario or whatever innovations or changes may happen in this life and adapt to it.
For someone who is willing to learn can never be stranded.
I am not one to air my goals in public, I have nothing against people who do so, for I believe "diversity is the spice of life", so everyone should do what they are comfortable with.
But one thing I can say is that this year I intend to build long lasting relationships with like minded people and improve/build on exciting products.