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Job hunting, during a “normal” year, is an enduring, tedious, and, at times, humiliating process. Job hunting in 2020 is all of that, plus being sensitive towards employers dealing with the pandemic, understanding the weight and magnitude of unemployment and how you fit into it, etc. Plus, if you’re like me and looking for an entry level job for which you are qualified via certification, the applicant pool and competition is steep.

Job hunting in 2020 during the holiday season? Forget about it.

I haven’t written much about my academic expertise or previous professional field due to the sheer fact that I find them inherently disparate to what I’m looking for now. I was an American Studies/Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies scholar in college, and went on to work at some lovely nonprofits the year after graduating. Aside from writing, this line of work doesn’t put as much emphasis on hard skills as the tech industry does. What’s important in the nonprofit world is the ability to relate to others — finding similarities between different communities; being able to translate what someone wants into action; creating the best way to reach those who you wouldn’t reach normally; and so on and so forth. …

I’ve just begun my LeetCode journey (I’m late to hop on this bandwagon because I don’t like to feel like a follower). As many beginners and job-hunters, I’m starting with the “Top Interview Questions,” and I was already challenged. My former self would take to Google to try and find answers, but I decided to stick with it and fly solo (I’m no chump and I deserve a win!).

I wrote the code just as I thought I should. First, I wrote a for loop to iterate through each index of this sorted array. I was tempted to flex some of my ES6 muscles with a for of loop, but I soon realized that the lack of access to the element’s index would make the next step much more difficult. …

In this blog post I’ll be reviewing one solution for a common job interview algorithm: MaxChar. The interviewer will prompt you in many ways to write this algorithm, but at the end of the day, they are all asking for the same thing:

Given a string, return the character that is most commonly used in the string.

We start, of course, with a function that takes in an argument: the string. We’ll also want a variable to keep track of the letter that appears that most, which will, for the moment, be denoted by an empty string, and a “character map;” i.e., …

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As I’ve said before, CSS is a tedious but incredibly essential part to web development. Without CSS, any website you visit would be plain old HTML documents; aka, we wouldn’t be surfin’ the web as much as we do now.

In many ways, CSS is very much so a trial and error language. Changing margins from 5% to 3% to 2% should, at this point in programming history, be more streamlined (maybe that’s why people pull for no code), and certain basic code chunks for responsiveness (i.e., flex) have the capacity to be written as mix-ins.

My last article talked about why you need to be using a CSS preprocessor, and this one will piggy back off of it. If you’re like me, you’re likely trying to find a great CodePen that will suit all of your aesthetic needs. These CSS wizards are including similar yet vastly different prefixes to simple CSS commands, such…

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As with any programming language, the best way to learn CSS is to just write it. Considering how finicky styling web applications can be, it was particularly frustrating for me to learn during my bootcamp. For understandable reasons, I wasn’t explicitly taught CSS at Flatiron; instead, I learned important computer science fundamentals.

CSS is imperative to web development, however. It’s a major part of the user experience. You don’t want to be serving HTML documents to your user — they aren’t pretty, and, most of the time, they aren’t that accessible either. Styling your web applications should never be considered as an afterthought, something that you do after the functionality of your website is built out. …

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I took a code challenge as part of an interview process recently. One of the tasks was to write the so-called “string compression algorithm.” It was on HackerRank, so you could choose whichever style you pleased. I’ll be walking through how to complete this algorithm in JavaScript.

The question you’ll receive will basically say:

Compress a given string “aacccddd” to “a2c3d3”

The test I received added an additional rule. If the string was “abbccddd,”
compress it to “ab2c2d3.” In other words, if there was only one kind of letter consecutively, don’t give it a number.

So, we’re given a message and a function to begin with. …

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Developing backend code is scary. Developing backend code with Greek letters? Terrifying. Let’s do this.

I just deployed my first web application and am embarking on a new project. Since the former was exclusively frontend development, I was really excited to get back into writing backend code. It never gave me the same thrill of watching the DOM change through every “command S and refresh,” but taking a break from backend development only made me appreciate its power more.

I digress. Let’s talk about Rails relationships and join models.

In my first blog post, I wrote about Ruby’s has-many-through relationship. As my programming skills developed, I realized that there was something lacking in what I already knew. How could you express nuances in relationships without making several join-tables for the same two models? …

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I graduated from Flatiron School in September, feeling accomplished and ready to take on the world as a full-stack developer. Not one week out, and I was getting ads on Instagram about no code platforms. No code platforms, which, for those of you who don’t know yet, are websites which offer users and startups the ability to create a basic web application, without the need for developers.

Learning about the no code movement was great for my self-esteem (sarcasm). I just took a huge leap, switched career paths, and now Instagram is telling me that these technical skills are for naught? …

Starting a new application means drawing out a blueprint of what you want it to look like, and thinking about how you are going to implement whatever you are going to do before you even write any code. As a JavaScript developer, I often find myself questioning whether or not I’ll need to use Redux.

Redux is a state management technology created by the React team. It cleans up your application’s state massively by creating a global “store” where all state and state changes can be held, regardless of which file or page you’re in. Redux also helps developers steer clear of prop drilling, as parent components no longer need to directly pass downstate to their children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc. via props. …

Wrapping up my last learning module at Flatiron School before tackling my final project, I’ve been reflecting on and being proud of how far I’ve come while simultaneously stressing out about what’s ahead. On one hand, I went from having absolutely 0 (zero! No lie!) experience with coding to writing full-stack applications. On the other, if you asked me what an algorithm is, I’d probably just smile and wave.

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Did anyone else notice the Carmex lip balm in the movie? I didn’t…

So, for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been doing some heavy-duty Googling. My search history includes, “what is an algorithm,” and “why do I need to know what an algorithm is,” and, of course, “which algorithms should I study for my technical interviews.” …

Rebecca Rosenberg

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