Tag Archives: WordCamp

Learning to Code using Treehouse and Code School

So I’ve finally taken the plunge and decided to learn more in-depth web coding. I’ve taken a few courses here and there and was always distracted by one thing or another. In addition, many of the sites that I’ve gone to have courses that weren’t as complete as I needed them to be. Finally I heard about Team Treehouse at the last WordCamp in Orlando. The speaker talked about not having enough time to go back to college for four years to learn how to be a programmer but needing and wanting to change his career. I’ve always wanted to learn to code and it can help benefit some of the work that I do in my present job and with the job market being the way it is, web design and development has always been attractive to me, so I checked it out and decided to use a link for a free first month. The basic program is only $25/month, I have a link here that you can get your first two weeks free: click on this link for a trial of Treehouse Learn to Code.treehouse via FB codes

That said, I decided to start with Front End Wed Development – the program is very comprehensive and manageable while working full-time and taking care of family responsibilities. After working a full day, and training for a 5k every-other day, when the day has winded down, I’ll sit at my laptop with an additional monitor (not needed but helpful). I’ll watch the video which each session is 6 to 10 minutes long (give or take) and I’ll have the text editor program open, this is also a built in program so I don’t have to download anything and I don’t get distracted like other courses, Treehouse is all inclusive for this particular course. This course is 21 hours long, I take about 30 to 90 minutes a day with a series of videos and short quizzes which help me to be sure I understand the content.

I also wanted to be sure I get some solid basics in WordPress; although I’ve been using both the dot com and the dot org version of WordPress, I felt like I didn’t have a systematic way of putting together websites if I wanted to self-host on a dot org site. My goal for a project at work will consist of putting together a Forum with instructional videos and text content. It’s a large project considering I’ve never tackled anything like it and I could try to do it without knowing code as I have in the past but I want to learn more and learning on Treehouse tracks are sort of addicting, I want to continue to learn more and figure out the code. I guess you could call me a geek but I feel as I have so much more to learn especially since I don’t have formal training in coding.

My ultimate goal is to be able to create websites using WordPress for organizations, businesses, ministries and myself so that I don’t need to be dependent on a programmer. I want to be able to use my new skills to work for myself if I need or want to earn extra money and I want to be able to help others (non-profits) have a web presence with basics so they can share whatever it is they wish to share.

It’s a big goal for myself but from what I’ve been reading and seeing around me, there are a lot of so-call “self-taught” coders – mainly learning online through various programs like Team Treehouse. For now I’m thinking I’d like to specialize in Web Design and Development and use WordPress to create most of it. I think if I learn the basics in the Front End course I’ll be able to offer clients more than if I only learn WordPress.

After that, there are courses in developing apps for iOs and Android, Ruby on Rails, PHP, Phthon and Starting a Business – which I’ll definitely take. There are a number of other courses that are offered and if you get the higher level of membership for $49 a month, you’ll have more options of learning. There’s even a section on Career Resources and a discount hosting site for you to work on your courses for only $25 a year, (don’t forget to input the discount code for an additional saving) that’s a steal, to work on course projects and not have to pay for the high prices other hosting sites have.

I’ll be writing more as I learn more and go through the programs. Later, after I’ve finished at least one of the courses all the way through, I’ll look at Code School’s online courses, I heard it’s for more advanced learning and they were also merged with another large online company. Looking forward to investing the time.

Social Media: It can eat you alive

*This article was originally written for my Posterous account, it has been left in its entirety.

Photo by: 7thsens / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Social Media, it can eat you alive if you let it. There’s so much to learn, so much to do.  The question is which social networking site do you participate in and why?

I have friends who do Facebook, Twitter, and blogs. As time goes on I find that I like the flexibility of a self-hosted WordPress site, so I have that.

I already have the different twitter accounts for various interest. Got the Facebook account. Use Hootsuite to manage those and have some things on “auto”.  I’ve had an account with Posterous but was working on my WordPress blog so no time.

I then noticed, “Hey, I have followers on my Posterous, but I haven’t put anything there, I don’t have time to write something for each site!”  So, as I’m now looking at it, I remember why I signed up for the great “P” – it’s a simple blog that will post to your other social networking sites and there – you’re pau! (done in Hawaiian)

So I thought as I always do, how can I be more efficient? How do I connect everything and what do I want to share with the other sites? I use LinkedIn for professional/business stuff. I like to do mindless things like Foursquare which goes on my personal Twitter account @mLehua. I use my Facebook account to keep in touch with friends and family, people I already have relationships with – it’s more personal so I don’t have that account open to “everyone”.  So what am I doing now that I wouldn’t mind everyone and their dog seeing? Posterous!

Posterous, according to their Wikipedia definition is “particularly for mobile blogging”.  I was at BarCamp in Miami 2010 and one of the speakers said he was going to an Asian country for work and was told that he couldn’t blog, but wanted to keep his readers updated as to what he was doing as it was for his adventure travel company.  One of the guys in the audience said, “Just send it by email to Posterous”.

Well, that’s why we go to these things (BarCamps and networking). The speaker knew about getting his business online and blogging but was too busy doing his job; than keeping up with all the cool social networking things – so he said, “pasta what?” – The young man in the back said, “Posterous, you send it by email and it post to your blog and wherever else you want.” The speaker said something like, ‘really that would solve my problems.’ It’s awesome, that one piece of info just reminded me that when you go anywhere, if you can walk away with one small piece of new information, it maybe worth tons to your business or whatever you are working on.

Gotta run now… I’ll be back to write more.