Exam Success, Umbraco and Looking Forward

Published by Ben on Apr 22, 2016 at 15:14pm

Normal Service Resumes

As fun as 14 hours in the Hospital was, the recovery is always so much more entertaining.  Three weeks after some well-qualified men and women poked and prodded around my knee, I was back to 100%.  Which means I was in a good state to take my Database Fundamentals Exam.

Which I passed, narrowly, but a pass is a pass.

Despite my worries, I appear to have done well in the areas I felt I was lacking somewhat.  There is nothing like entering a new skill set with no idea what you're doing and coming out with some vindication of your ability in it afterwards.  Which brings me on to some newer work.

Umbraco's Razor Sharp Edge

As I was building up to my Exam I was building a website larger than any I had tackled before, featuring three candidates for the client's perusing and building upon the chosen one.  It took some time but I built a website I was very happy to present and then I chose to take on the responsibility of converting my work to Umbraco, a Content Management System.

That didn't mean I was ready for it.

Technically the roadmap set out at the start of my Antelle career would dictate I would begin learning C# as soon as I passed my Database Fundamentals Exam.  This Umbraco work is certainly part of it.

I'd like to go on a brief tangent:

When I was learning HTML/CSS/Javascript, I would take on a problem and then learn the way to break the problem down and solve each piece of the puzzle with a new piece of knowledge.  I found this to be an incredibly intuitive way to learn new aspects and go further than just learning, but really understanding how different roads may lead to the same castle, but some roads are more efficient in a context.

On the other hand, as I was learning Databases I often failed to give myself problems to solve.  I would trawl through the internet and other sources of information to learn a new command, a new concept involving data.  However, I would then fail to compound my theoretical knowledge with working knowledge.  That meant for a long time I wasn't "gettting" how things would work.  For a brief period my co-workers would give me a scenario, problems to be solved like when I was learning Web Design.  Giving me the working knowledge and understanding I feel has led to me being able to pass the exam.

So to bring this back to Umbraco and C#:

Going in with the brakes cut has led to me requisitioning help from Sam, who has been an vital part of letting build my working understand of Umbraco and my first steps into C#.  More importantly it's given me an excellent perspective on the scope of the language and the power that relatively little code can have compared to other languages.  Understanding my own learning process will absolutely give me perspective on how to help as the Antelle Academy marches on.

Umbraco has helped ease me into the deeper workings of professional web design, where I am not just building a website, but learning how to manage one as well.  Technically the site is still in progress, but the moment of truth draws closer by the day.  It's a powerful tool that I am more capable now for having begun to utilise it.

A Strong Independent Trainee Developer

Moving forward on my own after Joe's departure has definitely been a mixed bag, it's sometimes difficult to judge if my progress and work rate is to a good standard now that I have no one to compare myself to, although I try hard to not let there be question about i.  I occasionally miss being able to have a ready second opinion on where to start and stop when I work.  It's been a short section but I felt that it needed to be included.

A Whole New World

We now have the whole office complex to our little old selves, which was unbearably empty, so Tony bought a ton of office equipment.  Now I'm not sure when I opened my mouth and said anything about being good at DIY or if it's newbie privilege but I ended up assembling it all, it now looks stunning and built all to a perfect standard, but I'm not biased, really.

The final count of assembled items includes three office desk with pedestal drawers, two folding desks, two cupboards (one big, one small) and two office chairs, not bad really.

Some reshuffling has taken place and Tony has moved into the big office around the corner, I'm assuming this is because he couldn't take staring at me all day, although that's as good a reason as any.

Moving On

Once I wrap up the Umbraco Site and get that out the door I'm back to the wonderful world of not knowing anything about the next subject, I do feel that my experience in learning two other areas of programming has given me a better idea of how to maximise my learning and blitz through to the next exam.  I am hearing mutterings and whispers of 18 months of C#, so I might even be pretty good at the end of time.

I feel the ship has steadied completely after the floods and we can press on as a company.  I feel like I can be of some use now (and I don't mean being the desk assembler) and that's giving me a good boost to do better and try harder than ever to progress and repay the faith shown in me by Antelle.

Until the next time! (hopefully not another two month gap next time)