Sunday, May 31, 2015

Free 4 month QA coaching winners!

The winners of the 4 month free QA coaching program are:

1.  Dexter of San Francisco, CA is an entrepreneur which is one of the things that impressed me about him, his site is pretty cool too :-)

2.  Roger of Vacaville, CA is a 54 year old printer repairman, who wants to show the world that not only young people can land I.T. jobs!

Both of these peeps assure me that they aren't quitters and will put in the 21 hours minimum of studying each week.  I am SO excited to help them land QA jobs in 4 months or less!!!

Follow along with the blog for updates of Dexter and Roger as I coach them along and they land their QA jobs 4 months from now:

October 1st!  ( affectionately known as D-DAY )

I'm sorry I couldn't pick more people to coach for free, there were a lot of great people who applied!

I'm also excited to announce the re-launch of my book: "No Degree, No Problem"

It took me 3 years to write this book.  It wasn't the writing that took so long... It was the learning.  I had to work at 2 companies, read hundreds of emails from people learning how to code.  Now with 4x  the content as the original version, this is the fastest, easiest way to land a Ruby on Rails position!

Special thanks to Emily Foster, owner of Raven Brooke Studios, for designing and making the new cover for the book.  I couldn't be happier and highly recommend you to like her Facebook, and to check out her shop :-)


I rarely ask for retweets or mentions, but this is the time I will ask for a mention or retweet on Twitter or Facebook :-)  Check out my book if you are serious about landing a Rails position!

Keep coding peeps!  You can do this!!!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

4 Days left to apply for the free 4 month QA Coaching to land a job making $50K

I didn't intend on writing this post, but I've received several emails from people now asking why I haven't responded back to them.  Here's the deal, if I have not responded to your email, send it again.  I don't know if something is acting up with my Gmail or what caused it.  Just know that I have already received a ton of great applicants, but want to make sure you get a chance to apply as well.

Above all, I just want to make sure that people don't think I am rudely ignoring them :-(
So far I've gotten applications from New York to San Francisco from Spain to Georgia, I love it! 

I was tempted to close the application process because I have so many good people to choose from, but I thought that wouldn't be fair.  May 31st in the afternoon I will email the winners, till then you can apply.  Remember don't just talk about your college degree,  find a way to prove how remarkable you are, if your degree was so amazing, you wouldn't need my help to land a job :-)

I can't wait to get started with this program and show people all over the world that this isn't rocket science and you can get hired for an entry level QA job in 3 - 4 months :-)

Keep coding peeps!

Monday, May 25, 2015

The secret of how to get a QA job in 3 - 4 months.

I am going to be putting up a new blog post every Monday from now on.

NOTE:  Only 6 days left to apply for the free 4 month QA coaching, see the previous post on how to apply.

I met this really nice guy today working at Arbys who was a former inmate.  I felt compelled to try to help him, and offered to help him learn to code and get a better job.  The guy's name was the same as mine: "Josh".  He said he really appreciated the offer, but said he didn't think he could ever do coding.

I respect his decision, but I couldn't help but think about all of the people who say they do want to learn to code and get hired but won't put in the effort to make it become a reality.  I've gotten a lot of emails from people who want me to coach them.  They say they have the passion, drive, and will stick it out for 4 months.  They say they want to get hired as an entry level QA engineer in 4 months.  Here's the thing, half of the people who sent in an email to me, didn't answer my questions, and if they did, they only answered some of the questions.

I'm reminded of the Henry Ford quote:

"If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right."

-Henry Ford

Getting lots of application emails and trying to pick the best ones is fun and also challenging.  I decided to share with you the simple secret of my success in over coming any and all challenges I've faced.  People write in and say things like:  "You are so lucky!", "You are so motivated and driven" or "I wish I had your passion".

Here's the thing, I'm not lucky, I am driven and passionate.  The secret to getting hired or changing your life in any area is really quite simple:

You have to REALLY want it, never give up and find A WAY to succeed!

There is no magic potion that I am going to give people that will help them get hired.  Sure there are some tricks I've learned, and short cuts to learning and landing a job.  BUT,  the main reason you are going to get hired is because of all of the "sweat equity" you are going to put into the process.  I think I've already picked 1 student from out of the crowd.  I think judging by the person's desire to make a major life change happen, that they are likely to succeed.

I can't want you to get hired and change your life more than YOU want to make massive change in your life.  I will push you and drive you on to success like never before, but you ultimately have to want it!

Okay, I will get off of my soap box now :-)

My book is out in 1 week, I can't wait.  So excited to see people's feedback on this much better edition of the book!  Work is good, life is good!  Don't tell anyone, but I think I will be moving my little family to Raleigh N.C. this coming February or so.  If you live down there, maybe we'll meet at a local Ruby meetup group :-)

By the way, if you have a blog ( doesn't have to be big ) and you'd like to get a free copy of the new edition of: "No Degree, No Problem" before anyone else, simply shoot me an email.  If you put a review of the book on your blog I'll give you a free copy of the book that simple.

All the best, keep coding peeps, you can do this!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Calling all college dropouts who want to make $50K a year

NOTE: You don't actually have to be a college dropout to apply :-)

So after working on my book on and off for the past 6 months, it is finally being launched on June 1st.  I am so excited, the book now has over twice the original content.  If you purchased the first version of the book I am told it should update to the latest version when it is put online.  Let me know if you have problems with Amazon and I will send you a copy.  The updated version of the book is 3 - 4 times better than the original.  I have helped a lot of people get hired over the past almost 2 years, and seen what works and what doesn't work, those experiences have really made the book better.  Also I actually took my time to write the book ( not simply 2 weeks like the first book ) this time and hopefully fixed a lot of the terrible grammar.

Enough about the book!

I want to tell you what I am working on that will make getting an entry job in the I.T. field without a degree way easier and faster.

I get lots of emails from people who have dropped out of college, and are working low paying retail jobs, and who have pretty much lost their hope.  I want to have a QA coaching service that will take a technically unsavvy person and 4 months later help them land a entry level QA job!  I think the course and system I have come up with will be much easier for people who don't have a coding background, but want to break into the I.T. field.  This would obviously only be the first step, people can get their first job, and then move onto being a developer if they like.  It is really good to have experience in QA before becoming a Developer anyway.

Before I charge for this service, I need to put my money where my mouth is :-)  I want to get some real life examples of people doing my coaching program.  Which brings me to my point:

I am accepting applications for 2 students.

I will coach you for free for 4 months, after which time it is my hope that you will land an entry level QA job making $50K.

What do I get out of it?  I love coaching and helping people, I will get some real world examples and testimonials once you land a QA job.

What do you get out of it???

You will get all of my secrets, experience helping 20+ other people land jobs and coaching.  I will help you become ready to get hired as an entry level QA engineer in 4 months or less.

Here's the deal though, I know I will get a bunch of emails.  I will help you make your odds better of getting selected as one of the 2 candidates.  Here's what I am looking for in these 2 students:

You must be passionate

You must be driven

You must not be a quitter ( If you could some how prove that the word "can't" and "quit" are not found anywhere in your DNA, that would help you )

You must be able to devote at least 21 hours per week to study for the next 16 weeks ( no exceptions )

You must be someone who takes initiative ( If you can't take risks, and make decisions then you won't be a good fit for this program )

You must be remarkable ( what does that mean?  How do you show that you ARE indeed remarkable???... I leave that to you )

You must commit to not giving up for at least 4 months

You must have a Mac ( It can be old, just as long as it's a Mac, no Windows or Linux machines
sorry )
You must give me a review at the end

If you think you have those qualities than here is what you will get from me:

My commitment to helping you land an entry level QA job 4 months from the day we start June 1st.

Free coaching and help from me ( I will not write your code for you, BUT I will help you figure it out , and look at your code)

The latest updated, and revised version of my book.

My strategic customized plan for you, interviewing help, secrets and tips that aren't even in the book.

This is a golden opportunity for someone who is stuck in a crappy job making $25K and wants to double their income 4 months from now.  This is NOT an opportunity for the lazy or faint of heart, think of this as a QA boot camp, that will get you good enough to land an entry level QA job.

That's the deal, that's what I am offering, send me an email and make your case why I should pick you and dedicate the next 4 months to helping you succeed :-)

Keep coding peeps!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Free Code Camp: Why Rails is still the best option when learning how to code

I've been so busy lately writing my own Rails app in the evenings after work.  I have wanted to build this app for so long!  I'll post an URL so you can see what I'm making when the app is a little more "spit and polished".  I started officially making the app on May 1st, but the past couple of months have been spent learning things I thought I would need to know to build the app.  Which brings me to the point: why Rails and NOT Javascript is the way to go when learning how to code.

Yes  I know I'm a "flip flopper".  I said I liked Rails originally than I said I was leaving Rails for greener Javascript pastures.  Why now am I preaching Rails again???

Here's the main 3 things I didn't like about learning the MEAN stack, and feel are very challenging for beginners who are just starting out learning to code:

  • SPA
  • Callbacks
  • Javascript 

Single Page Applications are growing in popularity, and if you want to use the MEAN stack, you will be writing most if not all of your web applications this way.  SPA sounds good when you first read about it, all of the performance benefits, no page flickering, blah blah blah.  I liked going through tutorials making SPA apps until I realized they are actually harder to make, and more prone for 'bugs'.  SPA apps also take about twice long to build.  SPA doesn't follow something that I had gotten used to in Rails' "convention over configuration".

If you are having an issue making a SPA app and you go to Stack Overflow, you will find that there is no set way to do virtually anything.  Now that freedom may be good for experienced developers, but as a beginner, I find it very challenging and you end up wasting a lot of time, trying to find a solution.

Rails on the other hand had too much magic, too much that I didn't understand.  Now I am seeing why Rails is such a great framework.  If you can cut through the Rails magic and understand what is going on, then Rails makes sense.  Also if you have any issue, there is typically going to be a "right" way to solve the problem.  Everyone in the Rails community will be more then happy to show you the Rails way.  

I loved when learning Javascript that you really have to understand how things are working under the hood inside the app.  Something I didn't get with with Rails but, since coming back to Rails I value all of the heavy lifting it does for me.  I think we need to understand what is going on with the app.  I also think having a set way to build an app really helps beginners learn and not get too frustrated.

Callbacks I also realized in Javascript how much I love Ruby and how it is written.  Yes it is good to learn some Javascript, but my goodness it's not nearly as much fun as Ruby to write day in and day out.  I took some courses on making an application using pure Javascript, and realized why in fact we have and use jQuery so much!  Javascript is fine, in small doses, but I think instead of making Javascript applications, I will make Rails applications using Ruby and then simply sprinkle them with Javascript where needed.

Javascript I'm glad I spent the past 6 months playing around with Javascript in my free time,  I think it was good for me.  My advice though is to learn jQuery and not to focus on Javascript.  jQuery is SOOO much easier to learn and understand for beginners.  If down the road you have the urge to build apps using only Javascript then go for it.  I think as a beginner though sticking to jQuery is the way to go.

I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I was flat out wrong and shouldn't have left my first love Rails.  BUT I promised to always be transparent, and I  want to save other's time who are learning to code.  I am also not a die hard fan of Free Code Camp anymore.  The course starts off great, but then when you get to the higher levels in the course the material is almost unusable.  Instead I recommend a blend of Free Code Camp and Epicodus

I commend Free Code Camp on publicly changing the listed amount of time it takes to complete their course. From 100 hours to the actual 800 hours it really does take.  To complete the entire Free Code Camp course and get hired they recommend 1600 hours. 

I plan on doing more and more posts on helping people to navigate the waters of learning to code.  Everything is changing so fast.  Even Dev Boot camp who at one time had a 9 week program, now has a 19 week course instead.  Cramming, pushing yourself to learn how to code in 9 weeks is just dumb.  You can learn how to code, it will take a lot of time and effort, but the rewards are worth it!

Keep coding peeps!