For the past six weeks I’ve been writing about my experience learning fullstack software development — my goal is to be good enough to land a SWE internship next summer.

This post covers the latest of those weeks (11/10 ~ 17/10).

What went well:

  • GitHub habits: I adopted a slightly new approach on GitHub, wherein I maintain the branches that represent my commits for each exercise. It’s a trivial change with marginal benefit, but it takes no effort. I now have a catalogue of my progress, detailing (roughly) how long each exercise took and giving me more granular data regarding progress. It’s also an emotional boost to look back and see all the commits for the current part of the course.
  • Tracking & accountability: I’ve continued to track my time, and it continues to be invaluable. This was an intense week, school-wise, and it reflected in the paltry 3 hours I spent on this over the week. I mentioned this to my dad (I keep him posted on how I spend my time). He rightly posed the question of why it was so low (I’m not that busy), and suggested that, next time I’m expecting a hard week, I should set myself a low target (e.g. 7 hours over the week). That will give me a goal to galvanize my efforts.
  • Starred exercises: I complete all optional exercises as a rule. Completing any single one is marginal, but, in total, I get much more practice this way. I also learn new things (e.g. Lodash) that I’d have missed had I skipped the extra work.

What went badly:

  • No goal: Like I said, I didn’t set an easy-to-reach goal for the hard week, meaning I only spent 3 hours on this, when I might’ve managed as many as 10 had I taken a better approach.
  • Failing to routinize: I fell out of the routine I established in early October, which saw me log the most hours (13) spent in a week on this since school began.

What I’ve built:

Nothing new — I’ve been implementing new features in the bloglist app that we’re building in Part 4 of the course.

This includes token-based authentication (blogs can only be deleted by the user who created them) with jwt, refactoring functionality into middleware, and fixing tests.

Repo with this week’s work:

Going forward:

  • Keep doing what’s working: tracking, accountability, routine.
  • Target time spent: I want to spend 13 hours on this over the coming week.

Student @ UBC (Vancouver, BC).