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Showing posts from May, 2014

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Self-Discipline Issues

Managing yourself is not an easy task.
Self-discipline is not an easy task.

I try to stay on track with my self-imposed curriculum, and it gets really hard sometimes. Not just the material, but it's more because of controlling and disciplining myself to sit down in front of the computer and do the work. I know it's really important but sometimes I just wanna stop. Without a day-job to keep your rhythm maintained during the day (7AM wake-up, 6PM get-home, etc), you would think you can use all that extra time to be productive. Man, it just doesn't work out like that. With all the time in the world, it becomes even harder to focus on accomplishing something during the day.

I am going to try more techniques over the upcoming weeks.
Scheduling my day into one-hour blocks, keeping  a consistent sleep/eating schedule, goal-setting ...
I hope to improve, one day at a time.


Good quote from House

Eve: Time changes everything.

Dr. Gregory House: That's what people say, it's not true. Doing things changes things. Not doing things leaves things exactly as they were.

There is no "Self-Taught"

I think the word self-taught should be loosely used. It’s misleading.
There’s really no “self-teaching” in programming, web development, etc. It just means that I didn't receive any formal face-to-face instruction from teachers or in classroom settings. But all the free resources I’m using online, they were all created by other altruistic people – basically they are great teachers in their own right. 
Self-Education is basically seeking out teachers who are hidden. Seeking out materials written or created by other people that can help you grow and learn.
So perhaps there’s no such thing as self-teaching. Knowledge and wisdom has always been handed down from generation to generation. I’m just another Torch Runner who’s trying to receive the flame from the last generation so that I can continue it down to the next.

Church

Our Pastor is inspiring.
He uses his God-given communication skills to deliver sermons that are very inspiring. Especially for the young early 20s who are so lost and confused in a big city like NYC, trying to determine their life paths.

Stand-up comedians have a similar craft when you think about it. Using their communication skills for an audience. Going up on stage. Delivering jokes and stories that elicit laughter and understanding. But ultimately, they mostly do it for themselves. At the end of the day, do they care about anybody else? Or do they care about their own fame and success? We all seem to use our talents for different purposes. Some for the purpose of selfish gains. Some for the purpose of altruism. Some for the purpose of selfish gains in disguise of pursuing altruism ... etc.

With all my dissatisfaction with organized religions, this Pastor does his best to help the youth toward a better direction, every single day. And that makes me give this Pastor more credit than st…

Completed Week 4: Ruby + Rails Basics (1 out of 2)

It was hard finding the right self-teaching materials for Ruby on Rails.
I think I spent about 2-3 days just trying to decide on which learning material I should use. Video tutorials? Books? Some of the books were really hard and I got lost half-way and lost confidence. Rails just seemed like a beast at the beginning of the week. I was really frustrated. I got to thinking "Who am I kidding? how the heck am I supposed to learn all this in a few weeks or even a few months?"

Luckily, I ended up finding a very well-written tutorial at railstutorial.org. Surely, it was very difficult to go through the entire tutorial as a newbie (and according to Odin Project, it's not recommended because people just freak out over it).

After that, I fortunately discovered the Odin Project. It is amazing.
http://www.theodinproject.com/
Basically a free web-development learning resource for people like me who are trying to teach themselves for free. It lists out a curriculum, all the good online le…

Completed Week 3: Web Design and Jumping Into a Brick Wall with Rails

Ran into various brick walls this week.

First of all, I had built my website all in fixed layout catered to 1920 x 1080 (my own monitor) and didn't know if it would scale or not. As I suspected, it cracked horribly under smaller screens, and it was terrifying. I had made a plenty of amateur mistakes: using hard-coded pixel values, using fixed positioning instead of liquid (%), using absolute positioning, etc ...

Screen compatibility is such a pain in the ass for both Android app development and web design. But after being inspired by other web designers online who had created amazingly, beautiful, responsive websites, I had to give it a try too. I started from scratch. Tearing down every positioning code in CSS and basically starting from a blank file. God this felt kinda painful but ... gotta do what you gotta do to grow, right? Tearing yourself apart from what you used to do and learning something completely new is definitely intimidating, scary and uncomfortable, no denying. But …

Metamorphosis

"늘 행복하고 지혜로운 사람이 되려면 자주 변해야 한다."

(They must often change who would be constant in happiness or wisdom)

- 공자 (Confucius)


Snakes and insects shed their old skin in order to grow.

If they cannot, they die off.


Keep growing. Keep changing.


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Completed Week 2: Android App Development Basics and Dreamweaver/Web Design

Publish my first Android app on the market!
It's not that great (lol) but I'm glad I made it through the process.

Screen Compatibility is such a pain in the ass ... for both app development and web design. GOD the way it sucks up time is OVERWHELMING.

All the logic and actually writing the code itself is fun for Android ... and web design, it's been really fun to go back to CSS/JavaScript and play around with a lot of cool features you can just Google and slap it on your site (like cross-fading images, collapsible panels, rotating icons, etc).

But since I didn't know much about Responsive Design, I have to back and start from scratch T_T ugh!! I wish there was an easier way to make my website look good on all browser sizes ...

You climb, climb, climb, climb long enough to think that perhaps you've reached somewhere, but then you see is there was a higher mountain all along.

Gonna have to put more time into responsive design ... I need to put up this website well enough s…

Completed Week 1: Java Basics & Android App Development Basics

Java and Android time!
I was always curious about how this is done, and since I own an Android phone and had this one concept for an app I really wanted to develop, I started with Java.

But reading books and watching online lectures on working with Java Eclipse and Android app development were REALLY TEDIOUS AND TIRING. Reminded me of why kids fall asleep during lectures. Yes, the theoretical foundation and all the knowledge is important, no doubt about it. But some books, some teachers just don't know how to teach. Many video tutorials online are boring as heck, not engaging at all.

And don't get me started on books. Although books have the advantage of getting RIGHT TO THE POINT, and having text explain concept in a way that you can quickly go back to it, there's just so much information at one time, like drinking from a fire-hose, and most authors don't do a good job of explaining the "steps" and filling in the gaps for beginners. They just jump from one conc…

12-Weeks of Teaching Myself Web Development

I am about to teach myself web programming and design for about 3 months or 12 weeks.

I'd always wanted to study coding since an early age: 16,17 ... but had never mustered up enough courage to plunge in. When I was in my early teens, I had taught myself basic front-end web design with HTML/CSS but it was really rudimentary stuff, hard-coding HTML into text editors.

Pretty scary to switch direction now and study something completely new, especially when many of my peers seem to be making awesome headway into their own careers. But I cannot think about that now.
I want this skill-set, I need this skill-set, so that I can do the work I feel that I'm meant to do.
Pretty excited at the same time.

I will teach myself. Apparently the best programmers in the business all started out teaching themselves.
(And most importantly, I cannot afford these coding bootcamps in the city that charge upwards of $12,000 down payment, and community college classes don't look that dependable). If I d…

MLK speech edit

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged, either by the color of their skin OR the content of their wallet, but by the content of their character, and the contributions they have made to the progress of humanity.

Complacency

There's many ways to stop a group of intelligent people to fight against you.
Let's say you are the king of a country, and you have to deal with a rebellion.
1) Confrontation This is the most painstaking way to quell the rebellion. You bring out your military and fight the entire rebellion face-to-face. You beat or kill down the rebellion leaders. This may be the quickest way and the most straight-forward way that does not require any extra thinking. Perhaps most of the kings will utilize this strategy. But there's many disadvantages to this strategy as well. What if those leaders escape, and start another rebellion somewhere else? What if there's more rebellions than your military can handle? What if killing the leaders invoke further rage from the masses, leading to even more rebellions? 
2) Concession This is probably a "cop-out" from the king's point of view. Basically you give the people what they want to have, so they will calm down. So if you don't …