Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Computer Scientist who can't code

I have a confession to make:  I can't really code.

Sure I can make little ruby scripts that go out and scrape a site and then kick off a build depending on what the data returns back.  What I mean is, I'm okay.  I'm not good at coding, I'm still learning and know enough to get the job done, although it may not be very pretty or the best way to do the task or script.

The bottom line is everyday I love learning more about coding and figuring things out.  I'm just not that good yet, give me another 10 years and maybe I'll know what I'm talking about :-)

I met a Computer Scientist who has a full blown CS degree from a respectable college and she can't code! ( I won't say where I met her or how, to keep her identity anonymous ) She was embarrassed when I asked her a question I was struggling with and she had no clue what I was talking about or suggestions of how to fix it.  I felt bad as she mumbled that she didn't really know how to code and her face blushed red.  She went on to explain how she knew a lot about computers, but not really about coding.

I quickly tried to make her feel better by showing her how my code really wasn't that good and wasn't actually written the "ruby way".

Later, I thought to myself:

"How do you get a CS degree and not be able to code???"

How can I ( a former Blacksmith ) with no college education whatsoever with only a couple of years of playing with code,  code way better than someone with a CS degree?  How does that happen?

I felt better about my coding abilities, not that I'm any good.  I just see that my efforts to get better most be working at least a little bit.

My next thought was:

"Why did you get a CS degree if you didn't love coding?"

I don't have the answers to these questions, only that I think people shouldn't love getting a degree, but instead should love learning how to code.  Also I think I will stop apologizing for my lack of formal credentials even if I'm not very good at coding just yet.  I am going to embrace where I am on the learning to code journey even if I still have a long way to go :-)

QA Coaching UPDATE:

It is with a heavy heart that I must tell you both of my QA coaching students that I was coaching for free, have dropped out after 1 week :-(  Both quit for various reasons, and I wish them all the best of luck with what they are doing.  Both had to drop out for similar reasons though:

They couldn't put in the minimum required 21 hours per week of studying.

I have already filled the 2 free 4 month QA coaching slots with 2 new people Georgi and John.  I will say that if these 2 people drop out, I won't be doing anymore free QA coaching sessions.  I wanted to show people real live examples of how to land an entry level QA job in 3 - 4 months putting in 21 hours a week of studying.

Yes it is hard work, but you'll have the basics of coding down and your first job.  I think that is well worth the effort.  I am going to be starting a paid QA coaching program in the next few weeks for anyone who wants to land an entry level QA job in 3 - 4 months AND can put in the required 21 hours of studying per week!

Keep coding peeps, you can do this!!!