027: The Power of Projects with Andrew Cook

What you'll learn

  • Why Andrew gets mega jazzed about web development and problem solving
  • How Andrew transitioned his career from paramedic to software developer
  • How to choose a good project
  • The first question Andrew asks himself when deciding on a project to build
  • What your projects say about you
  • Why an “already done” approach to getting a job is better than a “can-do” mentality
  • What employers are REALLY looking for when they ask about your projects
  • How project framework projects can be “chunked” into different groups (so you don’t create one for every framework you learn)
  • How Andrew approached his first project—step-by-step
  • The one big thing Andrew would have done differently
  • How to protect your projects as you build them
  • How to make your projects easily accessible and maintainable
  • How to maximize Meetups and other developers to get help with building your projects
  • Andrew’s EXCELLENT advice for new programmers—especially those from non-technical backgrounds
  • The (most awesomely) surprising thing Andrew learned about himself since he began teaching himself software development
  • How to search for answers online like an expert
  • How Andrew approaches asking a question on StackOverflow

Key moments

Do you have enough projects in your portfolio—or any at all?

Self-taught software developer and cloud computing enthusiast Andrew Cook helps web developers understand why projects are so important to their career, and how they can get started building their own!

I first met Andrew through CodeNewbie chats on Wednesday nights—my favorite night of the week—and we got to chatting about his work. I was really fascinated by a few aspects of his story.

First, he had made this career transition from the medical industry to software development. I’m always interested to hear someone’s story when they make a big jump like that!

But on top of that, a consistent theme kept coming up in Andrew’s story—and that theme was projects.

Andrew’s true passion, as he’ll tell you, is in cloud computing. When he began building his skills for his first job in web development, he still working as a paramedic. During this time, Andrew began building projects to provide a publicly visible application of what he was learning. Those projects helped him to get his first job, and they’ve greatly benefited him since.

In this episode, Andrew tells us what inspired his first projects, what he did right, and what he could have done better.

We also discuss some important topics for new web developers, like:

  • Learning how to learn
  • Where to find help when you get stuck
  • Protecting your projects as you build them
  • What employers are REALLY looking for when they ask about your projects in a job interview

So strap in for some Grade A-quality insight and advice from Andrew. Let’s go!

Show Notes

Andrew’s plugs

StackOverflow

Twitter
Twitter is where tech happens” —Andrew
Twitter is where tech happens” —Kim Crayton
See a trend?
GET ON TWITTER 🙂

Andrew’s social media

@codingwithcookie on Twitter

Andrew’s Website (Coding with Cookie)

Nicole’s links

Codeland Conference 2018
One of the most inclusive conferences for new web developers—let me know if you’ll be there! 🙂

https://contentupgrade.me/7G4eompe

What you'll learn

  • Why Andrew gets mega jazzed about web development and problem solving
  • How Andrew transitioned his career from paramedic to software developer
  • How to choose a good project
  • The first question Andrew asks himself when deciding on a project to build
  • What your projects say about you
  • Why an “already done” approach to getting a job is better than a “can-do” mentality
  • What employers are REALLY looking for when they ask about your projects
  • How project framework projects can be “chunked” into different groups (so you don’t create one for every framework you learn)
  • How Andrew approached his first project—step-by-step
  • The one big thing Andrew would have done differently
  • How to protect your projects as you build them
  • How to make your projects easily accessible and maintainable
  • How to maximize Meetups and other developers to get help with building your projects
  • Andrew’s EXCELLENT advice for new programmers—especially those from non-technical backgrounds
  • The (most awesomely) surprising thing Andrew learned about himself since he began teaching himself software development
  • How to search for answers online like an expert
  • How Andrew approaches asking a question on StackOverflow

Key moments

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You can always unsubscribe (but I don’t think you’ll want to). :)