Post #2 – Big Changes Since Last Post

Wow, lot’s has happened with the project since my first post. First, I found a group to join to work on the Jam Session project. We originally thought we’d have more than just two group members, but we weren’t assigned any others, so it’s just us two. While this may seem like a hinderance, I see it as a benefit (so far…) since my teammate and I have skillsets that balance each other out. I have quite a bit of database design and backend experience, and my partner has pretty extensive frontend experience, which makes division of tasks very easy. Going into the next few weeks I foresee communication being the toughest challenge. Not because we don’t communicate with each other, but because it seems like there will be a decent amount of complexity with integrating the API with the frontend UI. Once we reach a rhythm with implementing changes and communicating issues, however, I think things will go smoothly.

One thing that I’ve learned from this program, and that’s really starting to dawn on me as I work through this project, is how learning, and having the confidence to learn new skills, is one of the greatest assets a software engineer can have. Any time I get a stretch assignment I find myself going through the same cycle of feeling overwhelmed with something new I have to learn, taking time to learn that something, then applying what I’ve learned. For this project, learning Django has been a prime example of this. I spent the first two weeks of this quarter feeling overwhelmed with learning a new framework in a short period of time. Those first two weeks I spent in what some people call “tutorial hell”. Once I gained competence and confidence I transitioned into a phase of lower stress where I began applying those skills in sample projects and, eventually, on our senior project. The cycle of feeling overwhelmed, gaining confidence, then feeling overwhelmed from having to learn something new again seems inherent to the software development field. I first started this program because I wanted to pivot into a career that would provide continuous learning, and I have sure found that (and that’s a good thing!). It’s nice to know that what I was seeking when I entered the program is exactly what I got.

Hopefully, I’ll have good news to report about project progress for the next blog post. Since we’re only on day 3 of coding, there’s not too much to show aside from our design documents.

Enough rambling for today. Here’s a cat photo to keep you interested.

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