DBC Weeks 5-9

Publishing this post marks the end of Phase 0, the remote part-time (part-time, ha!) portion of the Dev Bootcamp 19-week program. I spent my last weekend of freedom drinking in the sunshine and soaking up smiles from my kids before a very demanding 9-weeks of coding kicks off.

You can read my thoughts about Weeks 1-4 here. Weeks 5 and 6 of Phase 0 were focused on Ruby. Week 5 was when I realized that I can’t treat the course like a to-do list, checking challenges off and feeling satisfied by the minimum effort. I should be working quickly and efficiently to complete the challenges, but then it’s my responsibility to use up my remaining time in the week (nights and weekends) to pursue personal challenges that will solidify my understanding. Otherwise I’m going to need to repeat.

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Dev Bootcamp had us build a personal/resume site throughout the remote portion of the program, and once I built my initial draft I knew I would be reworking the entire thing in the last week. I was able to take it live at my domain, www.JennaAndersen.com this morning and I haven’t felt this proud of my work in a long time. I’m sure I’ll rework it entirely in January when I’m 300% better at all the things I know now, but I’m thrilled to see my HTML, CSS, Bootstrap, Javascript, and JQuery working together in this way that feels like a very apt representation of where I’m at right now.

If I can manage this after 9 weeks of 20-ish hours/week, imagine what I’ll be able to do after 9-weeks of 80 hours/week! (And now are you wondering when I’m going to finally give That Wife a makeover? I’ve been thinking the same thing.)




That Wife on Snapchat

tl;dr – I’m thatwifejenna on Snapchat.

Dev Bootcamp pushes the idea of timeboxing, setting a limit for yourself and producing a Minimum Viable Product within that time. Sometimes an MVP is all you need. I’m testing that out with this post, which needs to be finished in 15-minutes or less. Let’s get into how I ended up signing up for Snapchat today.

All the way back in 2010 the effortlessly-cool Bethany Jackman took my maternity photos. I was as puffy as Bibendum by that time in my first pregnancy, but somehow she made me look fantastic. Because she’s the sort of person who pulls off that sort of thing on a regular basis.
That Wife maternity photo


Today Bethany posted an article to her wall titled “Am I the Only Mom on Snapchat?” by Ilana of Mommy Shorts.  I’ve played around on Snapchat with my sister, but this article was the bump I needed to really understand how I could use the app and achieve some of the things I’ve been mulling over the past few months.

Over the past few years I’ve been making the move from SAHM to WAHM and this coming January, post DBC graduation, I’ll start doing technical interviews and officially become a WOHM (Work Out of the Home Mom). Why did I wait this long? (???) That’s another post entirely. Timboxing says it’s time to be done typing but I’ve still got 2-3 paragraphs to go! Continue reading

Dev Bootcamp Weeks 1-4

When I was working toward Hackbright I spent  time hunting down blog posts written about the experience. It was very helpful to read about the experiences of others as I worked toward admission, in part because I still had reservations about whether this was the right choice for me. It was those blog posts that helped me feel confident about my path toward a coding bootcamp, and now that I’ve waded into Phase 0 of Dev Bootcamp I’d like to do the same for others who are asking the same questions of themselves and their program of choice.

The City Club, San Francisco
Portra 800, Pentax 645 with an adapted Zeiss 2.0. Taken in the library of The City Club of San Francisco.

In The Why and How on Dev Bootcamp I covered the switch from Hackbright to Dev Bootcamp as my coding-bootcamp-of-choice, but I didn’t talk much about what Dev Bootcamp actually is and what parts of their particular approach are appealing to me. Dev Bootcamp (which I will refer to as DBC for brevity’s sake) claims the title of the first short-term immersive coding bootcamp program. There are hundreds of these bootcamps across the United States now, and as you dive into reviews and anecdotes about them you’ll find a wide range of opinions about their worth and efficacy.  A lot of people think that these bootcamps exist as part of a tech-industry bubble and that this boom of quick-fix “Make $100,000/year With Three Months of Training!” opportunities will pop, and I don’t disagree with them. I made the decision to attend based on two factors though – (A) I’m betting that the bubble doesn’t pop before I graduate and land a job and (B) this $13,000 I just spent will get my foot in the door to companies that would never consider me otherwise. The $500 scholarship I got from DBC just for being a woman is another indication that the market is uber-hot right now for females like me. If I enjoy coding (and I do) I would be a fool to pass this moment up. Continue reading