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AllWebSD

Author: Mark Reyes

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Just a web developer storytelling out of America's Finest City.
25 Episodes
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IntroductionToday, I’m joined by Coach Mikey, certified personal trainer out of San Diego. And in this discussion, we talk about the value of stepping away from your desk for a few minutes and some of the services he provides for integrating a healthy routine into your daily life.Highlighted TopicsWho is Coach Mikey?More specifically, what is MikeyOFit?What makes your fitness programs different versus others out there?You were an IT Recruiter, yes? Then you know lots of people have desk jobs, including me. What are some tips you have for people that work behind a desk 40+ hours/week?SCENARIO: Let’s say…I can’t afford you at this time (perhaps someone is out of work, or struggling financially). What could I do in the interim before consulting with you?Where to find MikeyOFit#mikeyofit@coach_mikey_oThanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionToday I'm joined by Gabe Balanag, Tech Consultant servicing the LA and SD marketplaces. And with his help, he spotlights the most common gotchas new businesses experience as they set forth with their startups."One example, is if you have 26 or more employees, you need to have at least 80 hours of sick leave time that you’re able to give to your employees."- Gabe Balanag regarding new laws caused by COVID-19Highlighted TopicsGabe, here’s the situation…I want to start my own business. A startup if you will. Across the board, what would you say are the critical areas new businesses ask of you for things needed?W2, 1099, etc.Exempt vs. Non-ExemptHuman ResourcesHealthcareAction items that can be done independently by an employeeRecent trends and behaviors seen by both employer and employeeThanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionToday, I’m joined by co-worker, colleague and friend, Daniel Gurtner, web development consultant based out of San Diego. In this session we go head first into a situational question. Can he explain what a cookie is to his wife?Highlighted TopicsHow long have you been a web developer?Family background questions: Married, yes? How long? Kids? How many?Let's set the stage. Your wife is at the dinner table and a website prompts her with,This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish.- Website after website after website...Without Googling it and in your own words, explain to your spouse what a cookie is?Options for people who have privacy concerns.Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionToday I’m honored to have Teresa Valenzuela and Gary Knight from the San Diego Futures Foundation. And today, we’ll be going head first into the digital divide, specific to our county and how local members in our community (me included) can be involved in these initiatives.Welcome Teresa and Gary!Highlighted TopicsCould you give folks like me who are new to your org a rundown of how/why sdfutures.org came about?Teresa, what compelled you to reach out for this conversation today?Let’s break down the San Diego demographics which require the most care in terms of computers, education, ISP - are there certain cities/municipalities you find yourself often servicing more than others?Your services are quite extensive (e.g. Computers, Training, IT Services, Recycling, etc.), which area could use the most help at this point?How has the pandemic impacted your mission?Our mission at San Diego Futures Foundation is to improve lives in San Diego County by making information technology available to underserved populations by providing technology equipment, training, support, IT outsourcing, and digital media services to Nonprofit organizations, disadvantaged small businesses, low-income households, people with disabilities, and seniors. SDFF is working hard to bridge the digital divide in our community.What keeps you up at night as it pertains to moving forward with sdfutures.org?How can the listeners of this community make an immediate impact?Final thoughts (e.g. things on your mind, ways to reach out, etc.)Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionToday, I'm joined by Ansel, Manager of Data Analytics at Thermo Fisher Scientific. And with his help, he coaches me on the importance of data, with a stronger emphasis on its value for your business.Highlighted TopicsDuring the creation of software (new/existing) when do you usually get consulted for your expertise?During the creation of software (new/existing) when do you think you should be consulted?What are the types of data sets, KPIs or metrics that you'd like the software developer to be aware of?What problems do you find to be commonplace when interfacing with development teams?What would be the most important topic to add to existing software development curriculum - Analytics or Agile/Collaboration Training?What core languages are you using at the moment (e.g. Python)?When you're in the trenches of analytics, what do you find to be the most cumbersome part of doing the job on hand?What advice could you provide new developers who are ready to strike on their first opportunity?What advice could you provide new data scientists/analysts who are ready to strike on their first opportunity?Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
Today, I'm joined by Justin, Senior Software Engineer at ParTech. And with his help, he walks me through a high-level explanation (by way of Italian food) of what a MicroService is!Highlighted TopicsWhat were you doing before getting into BackEnd professionally?Going from a Monolithic Architecture to MicroServices - tell me what that was like?My monolithic code already works - why do we need to do this?How do you have narratives, conversations or presentations in regards to saving money?What on Earth is a MicroService?Are you still supporting any backwards compatibility?In your experience, what kind of gotchas are you looking at when it comes to implementing?From an individual contributor perspective, has there ever been a tipping point in your MicroServices journey where you just wanted to pull your hair out?Outside of MicroServices, how are you doing in this pandemic world?---Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionIt’s always fun to stumble onto an easter egg. But it’s even more fun when they’re Chuck Norris easter eggs. And my Automation Engineer left quite a few on our Jenkins server.So without further ado, I’ll leave you with some amusement with a bit of an ASMR twist. Let’s begin!No statement can catch the ChuckNorrisException.When a bug sees Chuck Norris, it flees screaming in terror, and then immediately self-destructs to avoid being roundhouse-kicked.Chuck Norris rewrote the Google search engine from scratch."It works on my machine" always holds true for Chuck Norris.There is no need to try catching Chuck Norris' exceptions for recovery; every single throw he does is fatal.Chuck Norris doesn't need an OS.All browsers support the hex definitions #chuck and #norris for the colors black and blue.You don't disable the Chuck Norris plug-in, it disables you.Chuck Norris doesn't need to know about class factory pattern. He can instantiate interfaces.Chuck Norris doesn't program with a keyboard. He stares the computer down until it does what he wants.Chuck Norris can compile syntax errors.Chuck Norris's beard can type 140 wpm.Chuck Norris doesn't bug hunt, as that signifies a probability of failure. He goes bug killing.When Chuck Norris presses Ctrl+Alt+Delete, worldwide computers restart is initiated.When Chuck Norris gives a method an argument, the method loses.The only pattern Chuck Norris knows is God Object.---Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
IntroductionWhat’s up everyone and welcome back to AllWebSD. As 2021 unpacks itself the recruiting season is once again in full swing. And as companies unleash their budgets for their next round of hires its a no-brainer that you may get a call. Sometimes its a tech recruiter gauging your interest. But every now and again you might get called because someone marked you as a professional reference.And that’s what leads me into tonight’s topic.You see, that very much happened just a few hours ago and one question in particular felt like an awkward one to answer.The Loaded QuestionWhat are some of his/her weaknesses?Dear RecruitersWhat can I say? Obviously, if someone inks me in as a professional reference, I intend on outlining the brightest attributes about this person. I’m going to deliver, in real-time, a series of bullet points as to why this person is more than qualified for the role on hand. I’m not placed on a short-list to bad mouth my peer. I was called to spotlight what could help you make a more informed decision.That said, I’m not foolish on the inquiry either. I understand that to even get this far into the conversation, my peer must have done well enough to make it to that next step.But what gives? I’m hard-pressed to find something sensical with this specific question. What does a question like this serve? Where would you like me to begin? How does my answer play into the company’s philosophy? Better yet, how does my answer play into the Hiring Manager’s psychology?Dear ListenersThis is definitely food for thought. And I have to throw it out there into the universe and ask…how on Earth do you answer the loaded question? And is honesty an effective solution which can surpass the inherent negative bias?Think about it and let me know!---Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
What’s up everyone and welcome to Season 4, Episode 2. I guess this episode is more of a heads up in that, I’ve been revisiting VueJS. And with version 3 recently released, its’ once again become a premier option in JavaScript frameworks. I’ve noticed more so that Vue and React’s community continue to push each other’s frameworks into the next level, whereas Angular is definitely blazing its own unique path.That said, I wanted to brush up quickly but I also didn’t want to spend any more money on subscriptions.Hence, when I stumbled onto Vue School, I was very excited to see that they had an abundance of free courses designed for all levels. I encourage you to check them out at vueschool.io if you have a moment. I do not have an affiliation with them. This is simply a courtesy.On my behalf I went ahead and did some of their tutorials - all of which were straightforward and under an hour to complete. It was well worth it!Feel free to check out 2 articles I wrote with source code and demo attached regarding Vue components. The goal here was to get a grasp of reusable components and implement them in 5 steps or less.Vue Components: Bootstrap AlertsVue Components: Bootstrap Card, Github APICheers and happy coding!---Thanks again for listening in. Remember, I’m here to foster innovation through conversation. So if you’d like to continue this discussion or any topics previously discussed, join me at San Diego Tech Hub and go head first into the AllWebSD Group. It’s totally free. Just visit this link or click San Diego Tech Hub on the footer of AllWebSD.com. Thanks and Aloha!
Hey guys and welcome to the newest episode of AllWebSD. Where I put my city’s digital savants on the forefront, talk tech and find the proper moments of rest before burnout becomes a reality.Hmmm…My city’s digital savants. Let’s go there.Today I’m hungry. And I’m hungry to be once again inspired…by YOU. Specifically, the you that right now in this very moment decided to undertake such an arduous specialization inside of software development. Recent graduates, career pivots and the like, this round of dialogue is dedicated to you.Let’s talk. Let’s break bread. Let’s train.In my Jiu Jitsu school my Professor would call this an Open Mat. So let’s take this opportunity to be just that. A moment of time where we train together and pick each other’s brains on why we made this choice. Where we were, where we are and where we’d like to go with the decision already made.You’ve gone all-in trusting your instincts and inner wisdom to be on this path and I’d like to be part of that journey, even if for a few short minutes. We can go here, we can go there and we can talk about any uncertainty you have along the way. Now…are you hesitant and a bit camera shy? That’s okay. It’s audio only. I’m opening the mat for up to 5 spots, first come, first served.On a final note, I’d like you to take this chance and view it from a different perspective. A time capsule-like approach or a message in a bottle, if you will. A note you can look back on fondly down the line as a way to really gain some insight about yourself direct from no-one else…but YOU.Be easy, take care and I’ll talk to you again in the new year.Aloha, San Diego. 🤙🏾
ForewordIt’s the night before Thanksgiving. I have a laptop, a mic and an itch to talk to my wife about tech and not turkey. Aloha.IntroductionWhat’s up everyone and welcome to season 3 series finale of allWebSD. It took a while to get to this episode, so I must apologize in advance. It looks like 5-6 episodes is what I can define as a season at this point for the show and I’m looking to regroup next year with Season 4. That said, let’s get to the topic on hand.Tonight I’m joined by my wife Kyung Mi, Senior Data Administrator for San Diego based ResMed. And like many of us in 2020, she’s had to juggle a lot of moving parts. And somewhere along the way, aspiring to learn SQL has become part of her performance. Yes, you heard that right. SQL aka Structured Query Language. For me, the non-traditionalist, I say Sequel.“…it never ends…like I feel like I don’t have a stop point where I can actually pull back from my day to day job to learn something new”– My wife (when I asked what’s making it hard at the moment to pick up a new thing to learn)Highlighted TopicsSenior Data Administrator (Finance/Sales) - What is your role at ResMed?What is data in a nutshell for your line of work?What was the justification in learning SQL for you and your team?What is making it hard at the moment to pick up a new thing to learn?What book did we choose to learn SQL.Oops, My BadSomething I just realized is that I referenced the wrong book. I should have just suggested the original Sams Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes but I pointed you in the direction of a more specific 10 minute book in, Sams Teach Yourself Microsoft SQL Server T-SQL.My SuggestionsYou need a tour of all the data. You need to know where the data lives in these specific repositories.Make a long list (or a short list) about what the FAQs are when it comes to your business.ConclusionThank you for listening. Stay tuned. Keep up to date. Wish us a lot of luck. It is the blind leading the blind and it’s going to be fun. And we’re just gonna leave it at that. So please give it a like, subscribe, a follow—allWebSD.com. Visit me on marklreyes.com. Check it out on all your professional networks, namely LinkedIn.We’ll see you next time. And let’s hope we don’t delete any data. Uh oh. 😳PS: I kept saying series finale. I should’ve kept saying season finale. See you in 2021!PPS: Drop a comment, leave a line and tell us what’s going on. What ways, shapes or forms do you find to be most effective to learn a topic like this, especially from the ground up?---This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.
IntroductionCoding is hard. And if you aren’t careful, it’ll suck you down a rabbit hole costing you the chance to be mindful of everything else. And that’s where this book comes into play.Soft Skills: The software developer’s life manual by John Sonmez, is a book which helped me understand that there’s more to this career path than creating object oriented code or deploying things into a cloud.Here’s my summary and why I think you should add this to your developer book shelf.SummaryThe book is broken down into 7 thoughtful sections including: “Career”, “Marketing Yourself”, “Learning”, “Productivity”, “Financial”, “Fitness” and “Spirit”.Sections are divided into chapters, with each chapter offering advice in short order and action items to do at the end. Think of this as a tiny list for you to digest. Use it as a way to take stock to then apply to your situation.What’s ImportantAt 400ish pages in length, here’s what you’ll want to focus on first.CareerPeople skills: You need them more than you think – a 5 page pep talk on informing you that it’s not all about code. John channels his inner Dale Carnegie to give advice on the ineffectiveness of criticizing other people, the value in avoiding arguments and more.Marketing YourselfMarketing basics for code monkeys – this headfirst explanation is written for the developer to understand the value of marketing oneself and options on how to do so.LearningFinding gaps in your knowledge – take inventory of where your knowledge gaps are with this series of written exercises challenging you to write down your questions and hardships with an intention to revisit them down the line.ProductivityPomodoro Technique – a timing exercise applicable to your daily work life. Although I don’t prescribe to the timer down to the exact second, I still leverage some form of this pattern throughout my day. It’s a nice flow of focus and rest that I strongly recommend you explore.FinancialWhat are you going to do with your paycheck? – John paints a broad brush on finances, consistent in his opinions like other financial experts. Stop thinking short term and distinguishing between an asset and a liability are my personal favorites.FitnessWhy you need to hack your health – a commitment to your health. Need I say more?SpiritHaving the right mental attitude: Rebooting – this chapter molds itself as a personal reflection you must take when it comes to your thoughts. Essentially, techniques are given on how to take an x-ray of your thoughts and what to do with them next.ConclusionEnjoy the read. Don’t barrel through it. Read it in order. Jump around. It doesn’t matter.John’s tone is very empathic. His narrative offers a sense of calm throughout and the format is set up for readers to consume advice in digestible pieces. If you choose to be in the software development career for the long haul, buy this book and never let it go.This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.
IntroductionI’m fairly rusty with freelance. Frankly, my last freelance gig was almost a decade ago. A lot has changed since then…namely starting a family. But alas, with 2020 being so unique, I thought I’d take a stab at getting back into this arena part time and I wanted to outline some things which happened along the way.Long story short, I did not get the job.DeniedThrough word of mouth, a colleague of mine connected me to one of his clients in Los Angeles. Their company – an app based service for home cooked meals. They had a web app written in AngularJS and looked to add new features on an existing screen.After a few days and filtering the true needs to be met, I emailed a quote. Thereby getting this reply:$…for one screen being updated is way out of our budget. I thank you for your time. Perhaps we can do something together in the future.– Client XYZWhat Now?I can’t knock the receiving end for saying no. I too am a customer and I empathize that every scenario is already influenced with a prefixed budget in mind.But could I have done something else to have supply and demand equal out?Honestly…no. That said, I thought it’d be best to leave a checklist for those of you in similar scenarios. Here are my essentials I obsessed about behind the scenes before ever striking into a conversation.Freelance Checklist 2020Do I really want the gig?Seriously…do you? Have you spent enough time on your own deeds? Would family time be in jeopardy should you say yes? Decline immediately if you’re on the fence. Neither side will benefit if you’re not all in.Are my conversations free?Some people charge like lawyers. I’m not one of them. Free conversations (albeit, you must time box them) is the opportunity for you to filter out what the true needs are from the client.What’s my quote?The hardest part. Honestly, the best advice I received as of late came from two fronts.First, my colleague who connected me. In short, billing from total project cost is recommended if you’re absolutely sure of everything you had to quote. If you have a sense of uncertainty, bill by the hour.Second, what rate to charge? Make it up (thanks CareerFoundry.com).ConclusionAt this point, what matters most isn’t that I didn’t close the deal, but the lessons I can uproot after the fact. I hope this checklist sheds some light on your next freelance endeavor.How do you balance freelance with a full-time career and other lifestyle dynamics? I’d love to know your opinion. Feel free to contact me and hopefully we can get a conversation on this sometime in the future.Thanks. 
IntroductionDevelopers. How many companies have them? The developer suffix is often prepended with any of the following: Front End, Back End, iOS, Android, Web, Full Stack, Embedded, Software, Desktop, Middle Tier, etc. But what about The Angry Developer? You know who I’m talking about. That one developer always wrapped in angst, flips out on scope changes or constantly punts back, it works on my machine. Okay, that last one might be a stretch because honestly, that could be any developer under any circumstance.But back to the point and I must confess, I’m very much guilty of being that person. When I first got into this industry, I picked up some bad habits and I wanted to send notice on my mistakes and offer suggestions, in case you ever feel angry when in the trenches of code.Choose Your Role Models Wisely It’s your first day at the company and you’re meeting people left and right. You follow certain personalities on social media. Be extra mindful on who you choose to fold into your own. In the beginning of my career, I was seriously just excited to do web. But I never thought beyond the task and the level of detail which takes place after receiving the opportunity, namely your soft skills.What I can tell you is that Austin 3:16 may work in the squared circle but you should think twice before bringing the rattlesnake into a conference room. Take a break and meditate.Embrace CriticismCriticism – both good and bad will exist in the workplace. It just happens. It’s a song and dance you and your coworkers are playing at every turn, especially if you’re in a position which literally produces an experience. Rest assured, nothing is perfect. Facebook, Google and the start-ups of today still go through their examinations before throwing something out into the wild. Remember, your customer doesn’t know you by name. But they do know how they’d feel after a first pass at your product or service. Criticism, in my opinion is an inclusive exercise when inside your office space. But once it exits that door, the customer’s critique will always be exclusive.It’s Just A JobThis comment won’t win any stars with recruiters or your boss but when you distill all things into its basic parts, it very much is that…a job. Payment in exchange for your service and time. When you’re done with the day, go home owning that simple fact. There are no additional burdens to carry into your night and it’ll help you get that mental break you need in this insanely fast paced world.Additional Tips & TricksInsight Timer – a FREE meditation app I’ve used since 2017. They have paid programs as well but their free service is honest enough for you to enjoy, FOREVER.Soft Skills: The Software Developer’s Life Manual – a book which brushes on the hard bits of software development: dealing with clients, peers, managers, staying productive and more.ConclusionI had to get this one off my chest. 2020 has been quite a rodeo to say the least and with our zoom skills increasing and our soft skills not getting its fair shake, I figured now was the time to bring back the human elements needed in an ever abundant remote work ecosystem.Thanks.This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.
Welcome to Season 3 of the allwebSD podcast! I’m back bringing stories to the foreground within the San Diego tech community and today I’m opening up this season with an awkward subject.Simply put, when to call it quits. Today, I’m here with my former coworker who is helping me understand just that. His name is Greg Schumsky and I had the privilege of working with him for a little over 6 months on a digital project within the consumer sleep space.Here’s a bit about Greg – he drives a DeLorean almost daily and built a remote controlled R2D2 out of God knows what. It’s accurate enough that I think Disney would want to acquire it. But today he is working on his bigger creative dreams, which I’ll let him disclose should he want to but for the most part he’s here to clear things up on today’s topic.You see Greg decided to do just that. Specifically within the UX side of our digital world and I wanted to know why. So here he is, opening up his heart as to why that decision was necessary in his creative career.Best advice I can give is to be flexible...and don't take anything personally.Highlighted Topics“UX Design is just not me or a thing I want to be a part of…”“I really don’t know who’s to blame for that happening, yet no one seems interested in fixing that. Yes, you can fight them on it if you wish, but at the end of the day, they will always win.”ConclusionFor anyone listening, it’s important to pull certain elements from this as you blaze your own path but for the most part, leave the rest in passing. Greg’s story and experience is unique and I’m thankful that we got this chance to reconnect and gain perspective. 
Welcome to the Season 2 Finale of the allwebSD podcast. I’m joined today by Security Engineer, Developer but more importantly one of my best friends and brothers from another mother. I’ve grown up with this guy since my high school days. I will not tell you when I went to high school cause I don’t want to date myself, but ya Michael Jordan was still the King...still is the King and we’ll leave it at that.This is Edel John Marcelino of Beacon Cloud Solutions, a local cyber security company out of San Diego."Look at it (digital data) like you would anything else...I'm sure everyone still has file cabinets full of paper files...if I lost those paper files, what would happen?"Highlighted TopicsComparing data security from the past (2008) to now (2020).Remember Target and Home Depot Credit Card breaches.Summary of current payment processors: NFC payments, Google Payments, Apple Payments, Samsung Payments, etc.Quarantine’s Top 10 Phishing TargetsPassword Management.Identity Theft Insurance - is it worth it?Back up your data.What the hell is a vector?
Hey, everyone and welcome to another episode of AllWebSD. Today, I’m taking a virtual tour of a San Diego company called Family Proud.Heads up, I’m taking a nose dive deep into cold water so if my questions seem spotty, I’m asking you now for forgiveness, so thanks.Please welcome a member of the San Diego Tech Hub community, he is CEO and Co-Founder, Jaden Risner.“We connect patients and families to community and resources that are critical to their care in their time of need.“What is Family Proud?What’s the biggest challenge you have with your specific role right now?Why? What compels you daily to pursue Family Proud?If you could have a billboard with anything on it, what would it be and why?Who are the three people who have been the most influential to you? How are you doing as a human in this COVID environment?Where can we connect with you online?PS: He said "Instagram" 🤪
IntroductionWordPress in easy steps by Darryl Bartlett, is a book which saved me when I was tasked with maintaining my company’s WordPress website. At last pass, the website was officially on PHP 7. Whereas my last freelance project used PHP 4.Yikes 😶 .I needed an insurance policy and I found this book to be a saving grace in helping me survive the modern day WordPress ecosystem.SummaryThe contents of this book are broken down into 11 condensed topics including: “Introduction to WordPress”, “Dashboard & Users”, “Appearance & Themes”, “Creating Content”,”Plugins”, “Creating an Online Store”, “Settings & Tools”, “SEO & Social Media”, “User Interaction”, “Tips & Tricks” and “Advanced WordPress”.All chapters are condensed, straight to the point and are thoughtfully written. It’s not a complex read at all and each topic is fully supported with clear illustrations.What’s ImportantIn order to thrive, you first must survive. And in my opinion out of all of the topics discussed you’ll want to focus on these 5 chapters first:Dashboard & UsersYou’re going to need to know the sidebar and the dashboard as a whole once logged in. The advice here breaks down the out of box WordPress sidebar and its available menu options. Find your way through the dashboard quickly and learn to add users to give them specific roles. Heads up, the more involved your WordPress development is (namely adding more plugins), the probability of your sidebar and dashboard becoming bloated would be high.Appearance & ThemesAugmenting the look of your website will mean hitting the installed theme of your WordPress site. Here you’ll get the basics of what a theme is, how to install, upload and edit them.Creating ContentPart of the grunt work will simply be adding or editing your site content. In this chapter, you’ll learn to distinguish between posts and pages and learn how to add text, images, video and audio.PluginsMost complex problems you encounter can most likely be solved in two ways: you code your way into solving the issue or you download a plugin from the open source community. Learn how to find, install, update and even edit a plugin. In my opinion, plugins are both a gift and a curse but you’re going to have to understand them, regardless. That said, I do not recommend you edit a plugin ever. That may break any licensing terms or cause undesirable side effects. Put that responsibility on the developer that built that plugin. Write a support ticket or contact them directly.Settings & ToolsLearn the underpinnings of your WordPress ecosystem. Toggle each of the core settings and observe what they do. As important as it is to create a cool experience on the front-end, you’ll need to know what buttons to push behind the scenes to keep the entire house in order.ConclusionI strongly believe you could read this entire book in one focused hour. This book is a great utility to keep in arms reach when you need to quickly learn the outs of your WordPress environment. This isn’t a book to teach you WordPress on an academic level. It’s a book designed to keep the plane that’s already flying to still be at altitude.If you’re looking to be immersed in the technical how-tos I’d recommend starting off with the source itself, WordPress.org. To add a bit of flavor, opinion and friendly guidance, follow Chris Coyier and CSS Tricks.---This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.
IntroductionDigital Minimalism by Cal Newport is an important book that I’ve picked up in the last decade. It’s a pretty bold statement to make but for me personally, I was in the market for something which could help me out with some mental stress that I’d been carrying over my head. At the core of it all, the root cause is my iPhone. It’s been a great tool to have but it’s also come at a cost. And those tiny apps which sit inside of that expensive piece of machinery has caused me a ton of mental headaches, social anxiety and has misled me many times over with misinformation and half baked conversations.Frankly, if I could summarize it, I felt sad. So I turned to this book in hopes of finding clarity in this gruesome situation and I wanted to share some of the things I thought were worth mentioning.SummaryIn short, Cal breaks down this form of anxiety from the very beginning. You should know this by now. 2004 and The Facebook takes hold. Then it’s 2007, roughly a year out from the Great Recession and Steve Jobs designs what Apple deemed to be the best iPod yet. Harnessing both the telephone and music player capabilities into one device, the iPhone was never originally presented as segue into mobile apps or the app store as one would assume. Through a series of short chapters, a total of 7, he takes you on this well explained journey: A Lopsided Arms Race, Digital Minimalism, The Digital Declutter, Spend Time Alone, Don’t Click “Like”, Reclaim Leisure, and Join the Attention Resistance.What I Found ImportantCal defines the meaning of Digital Minimalism quickly as,“A philosophy of technology use in which you focus your online time on a small number of carefully selected and optimized activities that strongly support things you value, and then happily miss out on everything else.”Addiction - not only relates to alcohol and drugs but is thoroughly explained in relation to our digital consumption too. Two forces in particular are explained: intermittent positive reinforcement and the drive for social approval. It’s a pretty nasty explanation on how the Like button impacts us."A Lopsided Arms Race" is worth reading over and over.Digital Declutter - in summary this is essentially a proposal of blunt force trauma to your current digital usage. It’s a cold turkey technique of 30 days where he emphasizes that “aggressive action is needed to fundamentally transform your relationship with technology.”To me, every process and thought explained in this book are equally important but "Join the Attention Resistance" has to be what Trevor Hoffman was to the San Diego Padres. It’s the closer and the final chapter in giving actionable advice to address this problem.Practice: Delete Social Media From Your PhonePractice: Turn Your Devices Into Single-Purpose ComputersPractice: Use Social Media Like a ProfessionalPractice: Embrace Slow MediaPractice: Dumb Down Your SmartPhoneConclusionFor me, what didn’t work was digital declutter, so I compromised. I tried a cold turkey schedule every fourth week of the month. That worked once and my remaining attempts failed. So I tinkered and ended up using small wins which for me just add up. I removed Facebook and Twitter for good from my phone. I need a laptop when I dip into those worlds. All notifications for social media are turned off. And it’s really changed the way I frame other apps when I see them come to market. Long story short, I’m not on Tik Tok. It’s one of those scenarios where I continue to say to myself that if I never had it in the first place, I never really missed it.I don’t look down on my past usage but I am moderately more assertive of what I’m doing when I’m inside of that Instagram game, a Messenger Chat or scrolling through a feed. And for now that’s step one which was definitely better than yesterday, when there were no steps at all.---This post may contain affiliate links. Should you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links, I may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.
What’s up everyone and welcome to the AllWebSD Podcast. Let’s get right to it, yes? I’d like you to take in informal data point on your immediate social network. No, not the people you like, heart or drop cute little emoticons on, I’m talking about actual people you talk or text with. Now, count on 10 fingers (yourself included) on what smart phone you and your 9 other peers are on. At first pass, that’s 5 on an iPhone and 5 on an Android. This includes my immediate family members, in-laws, the boys if you will and me.I use an iPhone and I have that bias groomed into me from the start. There’s 50% of an audience I very much overlook. 50% of an audience I don’t necessarily acknowledge when I code and it’s a thought I want to process today with you by my side.This pondering impacts everything we do on both a business and cultural level. But bringing it back to the context of this channel, namely, web app development, it gets me to once again think. This is a challenge once again brought to my attention by my JavaScript Instructor, Thomas Powell. A small except from a previous conversation, he says "grab a stock Android phone or throttle your dev tools and feel the pain”.Here’s an ad hoc test I just did right now. I have Outlook’s web app open in my Chrome browser and I’ve intentionally throttled the app at a Slow 3G connection. I’ve had the the time to write and rewrite what I’m saying to you at the moment because Load is at 1.7 minutes. Okay, I’m over it. Flipping this back to Online and it has a Load of 7.36 seconds.Now, to be clear this is Outlook which means an abundance of emails (text and downloadable images) so for Outlook to do this over the wire is amazing in itself.Unfortunately, I don’t find myself equipped to convince business leads that servicing these audiences are important. Except to say, it is.Here’s some food for thought. And a list of challenges we as developers need answers to in order to overcome this oversight:How do you convince your business that a non-iPhone lead is worth pursuing? In this case, the argument that not everyone is on the latest iPhone or a 5G connection?What are the data points necessary to present which gives them the chance to make an informed decision?How do you as a developer address this problem without ever being told?Are solutions like caching, gzip, compression or progressive web app techniques enough to solve this problem?Product, Design & Development often argue about what the MVP truly is. Those debates should continue.But have we beat it with a dead horse when it’s been about the same segments since the advent of the original iPhone in 2007?Are your UX and Design specs already framed with an iPhone as its exterior? What gave to that assumption?It’s fair to say that other countries have completely different networking infrastructures - word of mouth has it that South Korea has one of the fastest internet speeds of any country.But on our own soil I know for sure that there are regions within our 50 states that aren’t wired up like Silicon Valley. Take a look at the rust belt. Take a look at the corn belt. Take a look at your own county and reflect back on what cities had the poorest of internet connections. Tie that alongside the type of hardware your 9 other peers are on.Can we develop for that?
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