Leaena

I Got a Job!

Feb
28

So, that was quick. Here I was whining and freaking out about the job search and instead I find myself settled in a week and a half.

I’m a Full Stack Software Engineer at Udacity! I am so excited. Everyone there seems so awesome and I really believe in online/alternate education and have always wanted to get into that niche.

So no sob stories to read about here for another few months. Instead you’ll get to read about my shenanigans trying to find an apartment, bringing my kitties down from Oregon, and buying everything in IKEA.

Applying for a job at IKEA

…And So It Begins

Feb
24

I definitely plan to keep up with my Sunday/Monday posting schedule but I’m not sure what to call these anymore. When I was in Hack Reactor it was easy to call them “Week #: (insert witty title)” and now I think I just have to continue with my old standby of vaguely overwrought witty/melodramatic titles or it will take all the fun out of my posts.

Any illusions I had of getting some sleep after Hack Reactor was over was complete wishful thinking. I have been moving and doing and emailing and talking and coding and my life is just as crazy as ever… and I love it. That terrified feeling from the last week of Hack Reactor is gone. I mean, obviously there are nerves and ups and downs to this whole process, but there are also the awesome moments. The fun of coding challenges and flexing my brain at a whiteboard. The awesome talks with some really cool engineers and just the constant feeling that I’m still learning and growing as an engineer even when I’m not technically “learning”.

LAUNCH Hack Sign

And just to prove there ain’t no rest for the wicked, over the weekend I attended the Launch hackathon. We weren’t doing it to win any prizes but I attended with a couple of the Hack Reactor ladies and we had a lot of fun putting Marmot Creek together. Also, for my zen like moment of the week, a picture from the wharf this morning:

Staring at the Bay

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I Feel Legit!

Feb
16

Week 12: And So It Comes to an End

Feb
16

I don’t know where to start this week. So many things happened and they all seemed like we had been waiting for them forever and now they’re gone and I miss everything. Hiring Day was Tuesday. We demoed Helix and then I got to talk to 10 companies that were looking for Software Engineers. I was terrified but once I got down to business and started talking with the company representatives it got more fun.

Wednesday was fun too. I had my first call with a recruiter (who basically just called to say the job had changed, but could he keep me in mind for future things?). We also got to demo Helix live at the Famo.us Launch Preview. Sara did the narration and I drove the app.

The next day (Thursday) I stayed in my apartment because I was out really late for the party, but I had another talk with a recruiter, a talk with a tech lead, and a coding challenge for another company to do. I bombed the talk with the tech lead. Literally, I didn’t realize it was going to be a tech interview, it was my first one, and I just froze. Right after I got off the phone (“You failed. Good luck with other companies” were his parting words), I had the coding challenge waiting in my email from another company. I dusted myself off and finished the challenge in an hour, emailed it back and then cried. Thursday kinda sucked.

Friday was a bit of a blur, I told everyone about my failure the day before (it was cathartic) and then talked to ANOTHER recruiter and then partied down at my graduation party.

Saturday was calm. Lots of hugs and reflecting and a snazzy new Hack Reactor t-shirt I will wear with pride.
Hack Reactor Tshirt
I don’t really know how to feel about this crazy journey. I know it’s not over yet, I don’t think it will ever be over. I’ve made friends/family that will last forever and I will always be proud of our community and its people and what amazing things have been accomplished in their walls.

I’m obviously a bit terrified of the coming weeks and months. It’s a whole new adventure to navigate through filled with tech interviews and the highs and lows of finding a job. But I’m not going anywhere without my fellow HackR’s or this blog, so I think I’ll be OK.

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Week 11: Not Coding Makes Me Nervous

Feb
09

This entire week has been a wild and crazy adventure toward finding jobs. We spent lots of time making our resumes look awesome and making sure all of our online presences look like we knew our stuff. Shockingly, I think it’s working! I’ve actually had some interest from companies and recruiters on LinkedIn and AngelList! I have a couple of interviews scheduled for later next week, but because I haven’t been able to dive into coding, I’ve had a lot of time to sit with my decisions and I’m suddenly really, really nervous.

Next week is the start of something new and I’ve done more new things in the past few months than I have in my entire life. I interviewed/got accepted to Hack Reactor, I quit my job, I moved out-of-state, I started a crazy intense engineering program and now it’s like I’m done with the program and get to start a new great unknown. Next Tuesday is Hiring Day, which means companies get to decided whether I’m awesome or not (and one of my top choices of jobs is going to be there) and Wednesday my team is demoing Helix, onstage, for the Famo.us Beta Launch Preview. And that’s not even the end of it, I have two phone interviews already scheduled for later in the week and hopefully more if things from Hiring Day pan out.

Everyone around me is telling me I’m capable, but I don’t have that same confidence. It’s not even that I think I’m not a capable coder, I know I am. I’m just worried that I’m not going to show off my potential. I’m terrified of the rejection (because I know there has to be at least some) and I’m worried about making the best choices for me when the time comes.

On the other hand, I really look forward to seeing how amazing everyone is going to do. I hope we all kill it. Most of all I hope we’re all happy. <3

Advanced Filtering with Angular.js

Feb
06

Everyone (who’s used angular or seen an angular tutorial) has seen the awesome realtime angular search. This is used with a filter property, but there are more complex things you can use with filtering. On my Hack Reactor hackathon project I used filtering for just about everything. From picking out individual objects to finding just the right combinations and I learned some awesome tricks and some pitfalls to avoid.

One of the coolest things you can do is filter by lots of things together. The filter ends up looking a lot like a JavaScript object:

 filter:{TEXT: text, notes: noted, category: category}

They way this works the best is if you have a number of searches all on one page to pull together. Say a regular text search (text above) that needs to interact with a drop down menu filter (category). Just throw all the variables into one object and filter on that.

Another neat thing you can do is filter by IDs. For example, if you want to have individual pages for each item, you can normally just call to it based on the $index of that item. But what if you have searched and filtered your list of data into a more manageable grouping? Index doesn’t work! It’s pulling the index of the new filtered list and not the actual index that data point has in the entire data structure.

My fun work around for this was to send the object that you had selected to a function within my Angular controller for that page and find the data that way.

  $scope.add = function(website){
    $rootScope.selected = $rootScope.selected || [];
    if($rootScope.selected.indexOf(website) === -1){
      $rootScope.selected.push(website);
    }
  };

Of course this requires something in the $rootScope, but that also benefited me because I wanted to have access on a separate page to all of the data points a user chose. That way I could fill out a detailed report of the chosen bookmarks with user defined notes all on one screen.

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Week 10: Game Changing

Feb
02

This week has been a week like no other. I’ve already demoed Helix three times and there are so many more to go. We spent Monday/Tuesday/Wednesday frantically getting everything we wanted to happen with Helix working. I finally fully integrated the 23andme API and all of my algorithms are humming along to find genetic traits for users that login to their 23andme account. I have the setup to record a video walk-through of Helix that I plan on doing sometime next week. Because the framework we used is in private beta we can’t actually deploy it live so unless you come bug me in person, you’re stuck looking at a demo video for now.

Thursday night we demoed for Famo.us. We also got to be a part of their weekly team meeting which was really interesting. I felt much more like an actual Software Engineer following conversations about their framework and business. Right before our demo, we found out that we will be demoing Helix onstage at the Famo.us Launch Preview Party. My team is so excited (and terrified). Helix has definitely been a labor of love and something I am so proud to have been involved in.

Next week will be a new adventure – job searching. Starting next week I am an almost free agent. We have some hype up (and warning lectures) and then the next week we have hiring day (and Famo.us Party demo). The week after that I’m attending a developer conference and the Launch hackathon. I am so excited that this is my life now.

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