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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

One more time with Crunchies | a year's progress report by the "Codecademy Girl"






2013 a year in review, the codecademy girl journeys on
it's a year of intense financial and time investments
it's a year of exploration and uncertainty, but extremely fulfilling learning
it's a year of learning how to analyze, prototype, think like, and be productive like a developer
it's a year in review since the 6th annual crunchies ceremony, a life changing event



Highlights:


  • May Completed 12 weeks of +Coding Dojo and presented 3 projects on demo day. First to obtain a black belt certification
  • October 2013 Startup School 2013 Y Combinator, live tweeted and attended
  • Working at Codecademy.com round 1 support
  • Working at Codecademy.com round 2 curriculum
  • Cracked the developer code and got a free ticket to Angel Hack Silicon Valley, felt so good, proven my worthiness as a developer in training
  • Deloitte Technology Trend 2013 Annual Report contributor



  • Hackathons: Participating in Chime Hack, Chime for Change sponsored by Gucci [jQuery Mobile][JavaScript] || April 2013 DiscoverSF hackathon, SF tourism challenge, single handedly code up a working demo with teammates [jQuery Mobile] [JavaScript] [Google Map API] [Geolocation] || Women Who Code Hack Night at Yelp
  • April Attendee of Lean In presentation and book signing with +Sheryl Sandberg and Stanford women leaders at the Facebook HQ
  • Events: Attendee of April 2013 HTML5 Developer Conference, Google DevFest at Google HQ


  • Crowdfund raised $455 on GoFundMe for programming education. Why the CrowdFunding? No.1 reason is motivation. I have "angel investors" to answer to. I have to tell them about my progress. At times, I help with their tech projects, as an unpaid consultant: I advised on product, CSS, prototyping, building product, bootcamp ... It's a lot of fun, a sense of community, and responsibility. This blog post is one of those updates. It's about strength. And at one point, programming education does accumulate to a scary amount. 




  • The Crunchies 2012: for the first time, I was nervous about public speaking. I spoke well about business, strategy and consulting, but never about programming. I was humbled and delighted by the overwhelming support from this expert coding and entrepreneurial community. I will never forget people stopping me in hallways afterwards, and telling me how awesome it is that I have started to learn coding. People were there to meet like-minded people. That came first, awards were nice bonuses, frosting on the cake.

  • Learn to Code is like a video game with tons of boss levels but no final boss, it's a journey, and this journey is far from over. All this post is saying is that I didn't drop the ball after 5 minutes of fame. I really like hacking. I have been doing a lot of that after the Crunchies in 2012 and throughout 2013.





Press, Writings and Discussions on beginner coding and bootcamps:

Now I code casually all the time for prototyping, experimenting and productivity sakes, also demoing tutorials. I am trying to find my next career adventure as a Technology Business hybrid, it's my happy mixture. I blog about products, technology, beginner coder, MOOC, online programming education and web development bootcamps, lifestyle in Silicon Valley.

Pledge:

My pledge: I am a strong believer in paying it forward, and that's why I will continue to build tutorials and platforms to support beginners in coding. This blog will continue to grow as a wealth of information. Expect more updates soon. 














More 2013 updates continued after this newsletter signup form ... 


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Newsletter will cover my continuos journey, beginner resources, beginner hacker news, online learning resources, bootcamps, and technology, lifestyle in Silicon Valley (my CodeSumBlog covers these topics). These are low frequency mailings, 1-4 times a month.

Community Member:

Workshops, Classes, Pair Programming Sessions:

  • One Month Rails by +Mattan Griffel and +Chris Castiglione
  •  +Code School Summer Camp (cool idea but I wasn't exactly on top of it) 
  • +Air Pair Backbone.js, JavaScript, jQuery
  • Advanced JavaScript, Object Oriented Programming, Backbone.js, MVC Framework, AJAX with Girls Develop It

Events:

Yahoo Hack | Salesforce +Dreamforce Video  '13 | Retail Technology @ +eBay  | +Code School  Code School's  +Gregg Pollack  on 12 Steps to be a better Developer | Google IO Extended | Coding Forward San Francisco: Meet the Developers Behind the Obama Campaign | RailsConf streaming at +New Relic 









Monday, December 30, 2013

TREND Rise of the private social network | Hello Path, Dunbar Numberand the Private Social Network

A #socialmedia trend in the making?

Recently I wrote about Path +Path  a smart phone app that allows sharing private moments, private messaging, geolocation, music and other data with a small group of friends. Read the post here about how I use Path to stay in touch with close friends. Even allows you to post your sleep status (see screenshot). Path allows you to automatically (because you can safely trust your intimate circle and narrowcast) and manually share intimate moments with those who are close to you.



No more worries about stalkers on Facebook. I have 700+ friends on Facebook, but 7 on Path. Yes that also means Path grows slowly: 20 million users in 3 years. Nevertheless Path still caps you at 150 Dunbar's Number, this NPR article and audio talks about Professor Dunbar's magical number 150. Yes and no you cannot have more than 150 friends, even if you are super. Just like you can't multi-task when you think you can. Our brain is the limitation. Robert Dunbar cautions those who are Social Media agnostic: even for those workholics, private enterprise networks dominate their days. +Yammer  +Google+  to name a big player... and then where's the time for friends after squeezing the last drop of time for family members?

+Mashable pushed a great article and analysis on rise of private social media network today from Instagram to Twitter, private messaging is rising in not-so-private networks. Do you think this is a new trend?

Ever since I introduced my social media shy friends to Path, I found some pleasant surprises: my introverted friends found surprising talent in posting funny stickers, growing their network on Path, and sharing new year resolutions and goals. I am no wiz at private network, just a catalyst.  Hint, I also started to post my new year resolution pictures: going to the gym daily.


Friday, December 27, 2013

An app for staying in touch with closest friends, long distance

Even keeping long-distance relationship is hard. Sharing moments with friends while not appearing snobby or privileged is hard (research has shown that viewing other people's happy social media moments can make us feel sad and alone). Googled around and found an app called Path. As long as you have a smart phone or a tablet with internet, you can use Path for ... sharing a lot of moments, some even automatic. 

I have 7 friends on Path versus 700+ on Facebook. It's the difference between intimacy and broadcasting. 

You can read more on their official website Path an app for staying touch with friends



While Path is intuitive, allows you to share a variety of moments. There is a learning curve. You can find inspiration in the STORY section, or read on the "manual" in support section. I am surprised that my not-so social media savy friends have found talents in using limited free emoticons and stickers, using Path to keep track of personal goals preparing for a qual, group chats, and notify me when they are asleep (extremely helpful if your best friend is in Texas and you are 2 hours later in California).

There will be future blog posts covering unique features. This post is an overview, to get you started:
- limit your post to only accessible by individual friends, select 1to 3 to more
- you can visit your friends timeline and it will be logged
- a bunch of "sensors" automatically update your timeline: location, neighborhood and activities
- you can mark that you are asleep hence won't be able to answer msg
- you can private message and group chat!
- emoticons, some really elite ones, paid though
- you can share your location, check in, messages, emoticons, voices (awesome!), buildings, songs you are listening to, books you are reading... All these sharing can be done one-on-one with a small group (private messaging) or with your path friends in general 

10 tech worthwhile news you have missed

in no particular order
topics covering twitter, best apps, TSA and social media, websites for brain, electronics starter kit, Sriracha documentary, an innovative geolocation app that got a lot of funding, best games, best apps
  1. Twitter 2013 in review http://mashable.com/2013/12/12/twitter-2013/
  2. Calculating income for Obamacare, a reference http://laborcenter.berkeley.edu/healthcare/MAGI_summary13.pdf 
  3. TSA allows social media profile in lieu of ID at airport http://mashable.com/2013/12/22/why-your-facebook-account-could-be-an-important-travel-tool/
  4. 25 Killer Websites That Make You Cleverer http://www.lifehack.org/articles/technology/25-killer-websites-that-make-you-cleverer-2.html
  5. LittleBits the coolest electronic, open project I have seen that makes everyone a prototyped! I love it Will check it out myself http://mashable.com/2013/12/26/littlebits-video/ It's like Codecademy for electric circuits and sensors?
  6. While not a technology, there's a new documentary of techie's favorite Sriracha spicy sauce http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/12/15/250850323/sriracha-first-the-crisis-now-the-movie  and it is pretty awesome. You will find many surprises about the sauce, and discover new recipes ;-) 
  7. A cute strange idea that may workout well, give each location a 3 word name http://what3words.com/ A strangely awesome idea. Makes you wonder what will come of it. 
  8. Best games of 2013 via Mashable http://mashable.com/2013/12/12/best-mobile-games-2013/
  9. 11 Best iPad Apps of 2013 via Mashable http://mashable.com/2013/12/25/best-ipad-apps-2013/
  10. 10 Best iphone Apps of 2013 via Mashable http://mashable.com/2013/12/25/iphone-apps-2013/




Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Code up a holiday card in 1 minute on Codecademy

On the 23rd, I still didn't realize 'tis only 2 days away from Xmas. I started to search the internet for e-cards. While I prefer snail mail, this was too short a window frame, plus the postal office stopped working. Naturally, this is an opportunity for digital deliveries. Here are some options for DIY'ers to code up holiday cards. Merry Christmas to you all! Thank you for reading my blog.

If you prefer an audio preview, scroll to the bottom of this post. There's a SoundCloud clip giving overview of this post, for those who are busy baking cookies on side :)

Get started with holiday coding using codecademy.com Codebits
Codecademy introduced Codebits on Dec 19th via email newsletter (view the one I got in the browser). For those who are familiar, these are mini projects with all you can modify HTML, CSS, JavaScript, jQuery and font plug-ins. It's a real-time, side-by-side modification. For example, you can change the number of snow flakes falling by playing with the numbers in the jQuery Document Ready function. You actually don't have to use Codecademy a whole lot to use this feature. The key tip is to stay calm, to look for what's showing up in the card and correspondingly show up in the codes, carefully modify the codes to get desired results on the card. It's an interactive feature great for any one who wants to look under the hood. If you like looking under the hood, studied computer science on Khan Academy, or survived the Hour of Code by +Code.org , you can do this.

You Can make and share your card (login, save, and then click on share buttons) within a minute. For example, I clicked the snow man codebit from the newsletter and saw this ...

I changed flakeCount to 1000 in the jQuery codes. And yes, you just have to type in numbers, no jQuery required. Then I changed the HTML texts to change the Happy Holidays and from captions. I just have to save and share.

From the results you can see, the snowflake counts really increased, filled the screen. And the words are now customized to say Merry Xmas! from CodeSumBlog.

In a second post today, I will cover how I designed my personal holiday card from scratch this year, and share the GitHub codes.

Monday, December 23, 2013

11 Worthy Tech and entrepreneurship info bites for entrepreneurs and hybrid hackers

In no particular order ...the cream of hot topics in silicon valley for hybrid hackers, business "savages" and founders, entrepreneurs. These are breadcrumbs I picked up as an avid Silicon Valley reader...recommended reading bytes ...

Topics covered #stripe #justinesacco +Khan Academy  +KISSmetrics  #coworking #blog #obamacare +KQED News
  1. Stripe API design q&a on quora.com http://www.quora.com/Stripe-company/Who-designed-the-Stripe-API
  2. Social media PR slip turned disastrous - a social media cautionary tale http://mashable.com/2013/12/20/justine-sacco/
  3. And she is sorry http://abcnews.go.com/International/justine-sacco-fired-tweet-aids-africa-issues-apology/
  4. Khan academy hour of code page and tutorials written by the team including Pamela Fox a famous developer of the bay area. Uses simplified code language, unique to Khan Academy, to facilitate hands-on teaching 
  5. Khan Academy courses on entrepreneurship, interview with entrepreneurs: Founder Sal Khan interviews Elon Musk, founder of Tesla and PayPal https://www.khanacademy.org/economics-finance-domain/entrepreneurship2/interviews-entrepreneurs/elon-musk/v/elon-musk
  6. Making the most out of coworking space http://m.entrepreneur.com/article/230446
  7. Conversion optimization case studies by kissmetrics http://blog.kissmetrics.com/100-conversion-optimization-case-studies/
  8. A blog to follow: avc.com a VC in NYC http://www.avc.com/
  9. Stanford classmate Leslie Wu 's rendition of the 23rd chapter of Book of the Psalms begins with “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” almost gave me happy goose bumps. Can't describe the feeling when hearing something like a droid reciting the bible for the first time. It's just bizarre http://engineering.stanford.edu/research-profile/algorithms-meet-art-code-poetry-slam-held-stanford
  10. Obamacare deadline looming http://mashable.com/2013/12/20/obamacare-deadline/
  11. Obamacare guide for just the Californias by KQED http://www.kqed.org/news/health/obamacare/obamacare-guide.jsp

Friday, December 20, 2013

How I Use Kindle Paper White - productivity tips in Chinese 怎么使用kindle paper white 电子书



Kindle marketing didn't make it obvious how many international features the Paper White can support. It's a surprisingly powerful tablet, not just e-reader. With a decent home internet, your Kindle can do powerful things. You should expect the same functionality for many other languages too.

亚马逊的kindle paper white电子书支持全球中文功能。只要家里的网络够快就可以使用许多辅助功能,在看重要文档和书籍的时候提供附属功能帮助。


Translation 翻译
Reviewing a document or reading a book and need some dictionary or translation help? Kindle Paper White got both covered. It translates to Chinese and many languages. 轻松的用网络翻译功能翻译多国语言。



Adding Notes and Typing in Chinese 中文打字功能
Adding a note for a Chinese colleague or a friend? Searching Google or Baidu for a Chinese novel? You can type in Chinese right in Kindle. 不用安装新的插件,只要简单修改设定就可以轻松的使用中文打字。



Browsing International Websites 浏览中文网站 - 用kindle电子书看穿越小说(笑)
The e-ink technology is flexible enough to display all languages, and Chinese looks amazing on Kindle's Experimental Browser. If the home internet is FAST, then the Experimental Browser is a powerful black and white browser. 只要家里的网络够快就可以轻松使用实验性的网络浏览器。我的朋友想看穿越小说就可以轻松的在网络上搜索自己的最爱



All Chinese 只用中文
Use the setting to change your kindle to Chinese once for all. 在设定中比仅仅可以加入中文输入,还可以把kindle全部改称中文。这样全家都可以用啦。Got a family that speaks only a foreign language? Your entire family can use Kindle now.




Last tip: need some holiday movies but too busy to download? Amazon prime movie set offers free trial for both holiday 2 day shipping for free and also unlimited video streaming. Check it out.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Never Miss an Important Tweet in 2 Steps

This is a known feature, but technologies change fast and we can't keep up, so as a reminder, this is how to do it: 

Step 1: Navigate to the twitter profile that you want to track



Step 2: Click on the star to make it on and golden. 

Receive some kind of alert for iphone notification 


Press okay to accept

To cancel just click on the golden star again to "unfavorite"



Make sure you turned on notification on iphone. You will not miss a tweet from this person any more

Productivity Tip Today - Fancy Hands your appointments, logistics and basic researches


Assistant for Everyone - Fancy Hands 

This is not a sponsored post.







Please use my referral link if you choose to sign up. 2 people have done so : ) when I simply tweeted about Fancy Hands (zero promo).
Reasons for recommendation:
  • Great price for service
  • API enabled. You can integrate your Facebook, Gmail and let your fancy virtual assistant helps you manage.
  • If you have Founders Card, in general it gives you lots of discounts to web services, referral link here . It's dubbed an exclusive card for Silicon Valley founders, frequent travelers, tech connoisseurs and productivity freaks. You get the idea. It gives you a steep discount on Fancy Hands, Mailchimp, W Hotels and many other services ... a bit elite if you will... #discount 
  • Professional: can do complex requests! Booking and optimizing trip, research to spreadsheet, smart basic researches
  • People already love the referrals
  • Apparently my stats so far are shown on my referral link

Pragmatic Hack News - notable news for beginner programmers and junior hackers

Learning to code? A business co-founder? These news entries may be of interest for you. Dubbed: junior hacker news for a new breed of hackers: social hackers (as in social drinker).  Recommended moments:

Codecademy
The Code of Life - NYTimes
New York Times journalist write about the journey to learn to code on Codecademy and beyond. Couldn't have summarized it better: "Now, I was never going to be a career programmer. Though I got into it with the idea of getting myself out of a financial pinch, it turned out to be unnecessary... But my code year changed me. Whenever I meet someone involved in technology — which is pretty much everyone these days — I have a real understanding of what they’re talking about..."

New Codecademy mobile app reviewed on this blog.

And did you see NYTimes illustrative interpretation of Codecademy's famous beginner lessons? It's pretty epic.

Design
What designing in a startup is really like? Here's a video for it! That's like one picture worth a thousand words with 10,000 frames.

Bootcamp
The Truth about Hack Schools - Fast Company By Alice Truong
CodeSumBlog also scored a mention! I talked about Coding Dojo
Alice wrote a comprehensive one-page guide to bootcamps web and mobile, cheap and expensive in the bay area. It's suitable for all candidates considering web development or mobile development bootcamps. Covering both the bright and dark sides, Alice scored multiple interviews with important peer-level voices and also founders and staff of Hackbright, Dev Bootcamp and Coding Dojo.





Peer voices to follow when learning about bootcamps in the Bay Area and Mobilemakers in Chicago.




Hour of Code
Our coverage of Codecademy's new mobile app and President Obama's inspirational speech on learning how to code.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

One page guide to choosing bootcamps - via Fast Company by Alice Truong - Reader's companion


I would like to share a truly exceptional writing by Alice Truong on Fast Company (my favorite daily read) talk about the ups and downs of the myriads of web development bootcamps.  The power of Alice' writing is a strong narrative story that accounts for both sides of the story: the students and the founders, the positive and the negative, and the struggling and mingling of both sides. She even de-mystified some of the salary figures and made the readers question: is this really realistic? Should I expect to learn to code in a few weeks, without prior experiences, and expect magical 6-figure salaries? The answer, is NO more often than right.

The article covers exceptional members of the bootcamp-turned-developer or bootcamp-turned-hacker community. Natasha the Robot recounted her journey to be a full professional developer and also now a mobile developer. The story spans Dev Bootcamp (class 2!) and Mobile Maker, which is not the only game and policy changer, each bootcamp has had its shares. Really serious about being a full developer? You may want to read Natasha's story. There's the bay area Hack Reactor, Hackbright. Alice even got some rare narratives out of Michael Choi, the founder of Coding Dojo (which by the way removed the "co" from its domain).

Yet each camp has its ups and downs. Fast Company quoted myself +Dilys Sun  talking about  Coding Dojo and helped me say the fact: not all instructors are developers but you and I turned hackers, and then turned educators. Not every one can teach, you and I can't just go start a bootcamp. There's some serious merit in the way Coding Dojo functions as a dojo and a community, read more here.

And there are stories of people who sold their properties to learn to code and didn't end up with a dream salary. And there are people who have fallen so behind that they almost had to be asked to leave (prepping ahead of time, and coding ahead of time can alleviate this situation). It's a familiar story everywhere. The article highlighted a shocking number of expected graduates and alumni from each camp.

I have written about this topic for a while: web development bootcamps. I want to write better and more informative like Alice Truong. This writing is amazing. A lot to be learnt.

In the end this is a unique journey, it may or may not be a match for you, and it may or may not work out for you. It really depends. But at the end of the day as the article has pinpointed : it's a business and a thriving one with VCs circling above.

Coding Dojo Review - the good part - Community!

Here's a topic that I meant to write about for a while: one of kind Coding Dojo review, on the community. When still a student at the bootcamp, I wrote this blog post about Coding Dojo showing web security caveats: Does your bootcamp teach security @codesumblog? There are some very special things about Coding Dojo. 


Too busy to read? Listen to this Abridged, Adapted version on SoundCloud. It's a new way to consume contents from CodeSumBlog.

This article is loved on Twitter. Scroll all the way down to see embedded tweets and retweet from Coding Dojo.



Alternative
At the dojo, you will meet a score of different personalities, nationalities and  origins of alma mater. There are experienced developers, who just didn't choose the sexy languages today. There are businessmen and women, students, people who quit their jobs and made to quit their jobs ... Even the founder himself was a self-taught programmer who was actually a Caltech prodigy in chemical science (? pretty sure it was ChemE, but this info needs to be cross-checked). He understands the taste of being a beginner, an entrepreneur and more importantly, a hacker. The other co-founder in the Philippines is quite impressive too. He was trained with the first version of the curriculum at Coding Dojo, but has since then managed the team in the Philippines, taught, developed and TA'ed those in the US and the students. If traditional schooling has failed you, you may find a surprising utopia here. And it's quite possible to be student-turned-staff here at the dojo, or even manager.



Connections to 500 Startups and Hacker Dojo
The Coding Dojo had its symbiotic days with the Hacker Dojo. Students, staff, alumni, and the founders each has spent quite some time at this Mountain View hub of tech talks, training events, and co-working spaces for startups. The networking that happens here is invaluable. Thanks to early alumni connection the area, Coding Dojo has informal alumni support in the 500 Startups accelerator and fundraiser community. You can possibly get your pitches polished. I had mine polished by a friend right before the demo day.

At one point, a Y Combinator alum also consulted for Coding Dojo. I had personally received contacts, pitching advice, career advice, and job advice from him. That was helpful too. Sometimes, it's about the way of changing your career, not necessarily the skill set.

Proximity is Gold
While San Francisco is sexy and techie, let's not forget that most startups do reside in Mountain View, Palo Alto... yes, actually the Silicon Valley. Coding Dojo has invited some prominent speakers to visit and interact with students!  In my days, there was Mark Otto, and you can only imagine how awesome it was to talk to him, when we were learning how to use Twitter Bootstrap at the very moment. Designers and front-end developers from Pinterest also talked. The best part was, these videos are available even more readers! Click here. Pretty sure I missed out on Startup 500 pitches and Google classes try ons. I think the lectures have gotten even better. Apparently the most recent one was web scale up by a guest speaker from Hackbright. The quality of guest speakers has been stunning since Class 1. Still something worth mentioning, though it is probably less frequent now (need fact check).

The Art and the Video, the Brand 

There's something special about being a Ninja in a Dojo. There is a sense of drilling, training, and mutual respect (yes, a bit Karate kid like). Each student needs to take multiple levels and types of qualification exam in order to qualify for a belt yellow, green, red and black. And each belt contains different technologies. There's some very satisfying to qualify after spending hours (that's a lot! but not a lot for fully functional app, so the exams are actually intense) building a fully functional project. Hard projects and trainings build the best teams, which form communities and the constitute the alumni base at Coding Dojo.

And did I mention Coding Dojo would make awesome pictures and videos of you? Not any more, but the ninja, dojo, belt brandings are still strong, the pictures and banners for demo day are still great, may be just fewer vids.

Instructors that are dedicated
Sometimes I struggle with the typical instructor at Coding Dojo. They aren't your Silicon Valley developer developers. They are trainers, coaches, and hackers who are way more experienced and stronger at teaching than the students. They definitely have a lot to teach, thanks to their experience working with many students and hacking their way through, and they are super dedicated!

I still remember spending hours with one of the cofounders debugging, at very late hours. An army of offshore teaching assistant personnel, dedicated and committed to the students. And of course Randall and Eylem (my former classmates) really showed a lot of patience, good humor and dedication to the students that they have taught.

Food
Coding Dojo offered and I think they are continuing to offer good food as a part of the program. That should save lots of money. And food time, is a great time to make friends and make ideas.

In the end, despite that the commute was painful and the feeling was mixed for a San Francisco-based hacker like myself, the program has worked for many students and has been growing stronger (you can read about the Seattle location here . Seems to be led by an original co-founder and leading students from previous classes) and with more organization. 

May be bootcamps aren't supposed to be magical. They are supposed to do one thing: kickstart and fuel your programming career(they fuel the small kindle that Codecademy.com has planted in you). In a way, the dojo training brand and way of life kind of worked out well to build in some grit, and some struggle in that journey to learn to code. 


Folks who talked to me in the past and ended up choosing Coding Dojo have found a combination of factors and characteristics about the Dojo end up working better for them. In their circumstance, timing, and situation, Coding Dojo ended up being a great match. Then taking a step back, against all odds I also chose Coding Dojo because of timing and budget rather than the more obvious, and potentially stronger choice: Hackbright and Hack Reactor (which even had a different name). It's just like college. There will be matches and nemesis. Maybe the Dojo works for you?

A new way to consume CodeSumBlog content: our first podcast on 




Monday, December 16, 2013

Dilys' Coding Picture

A contact asked me for pictures of myself coding. I found some interesting memories. And oh my thank you Women Who Code for many of these great memories and Girls Develop It, Girl Geek Dinner, and those sponsors who let us check out their cool venues.

Advanced JavaScript with TA @ Adobe (far right in blue shirt)





Computer badges: firebase API, evernote API, angelhack (I cracked the developer puzzle to get free ticket), Crunchies 2012 award ceremony, rare Codecademy badge, Girls Develop It, Coding Dojo





Demo my final Rails Content Management Project at Coding Dojo. I hacked a Pinterest like dashboard for it.





(far right first person, green shirt) Github Ruby Tuesday by Women Who Code


(far right first person, black shirt)  Ruby Tuesday by Women Who Code @ Klout



Hack night pitch time, Women Who Code, @ yelp



2012 Crunchies Award

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Troubleshoot: People can't hear me on Skype - iOS7


This post aims to help people I know who experienced trouble with international calling on Skype. Issue was that can't be heard by the call recipient. This is a permission diagnostic seeing if microphone is successfully granted to skype.

这个电脑科技解读的博客论文主要是为了帮助我认识的人解决一个问题:对方听不到你的对话。这篇文章是为了诊断问题所在。初步怀疑是没有成功准许Skype使用话筒(应该是一个iOS7 的常见问题)

iOS will prompt you to grant permission if you accidentally denied permissions causing apps to be non functional, you will need to right the wrongs in Setting.












Codecademy: Hour of Code review and significance

Codecademy has developed a mobile app to deliver a version of the Hour of Code initiative for CSEdWeek. This new development is significant: Codecademy is making its mobile debut! It also is spearheading initiatives introducing young people to code. Furthermore, it puts Codecademy easily accessible on mobile, which is often an on-and-off short interactions (unlike its website presence), and makes it a contender for your time. Competing with games and "less productive tasks", that is. See this useful CNN article for analysis

I was at one time the Codecademy girl, so I can't pass on the opportunity to write about my passion.

Summary review: this app is convenient, meant to be used on the go, zero experience required. It's Codecademy doing what it's best at teaching people to code by making it easy and fun, without the hassle of setting up. Learn coding *concepts* just got a whole lot easier. If you can use an iPhone, you can code.


Read about the mobile app and download it here on Codecademy.com
Continue the education on the website later click here also on Codecademy.com
Download from App Store right away use this
To access the app on iPad, be sure to search "codecademy" and change the filter to "iphone only" from "iPad only". This is the way to make all iPhone apps show on iPad.


  • Differentiating factor: a simple tap and code, or tap and learn approach. Students reach correct answers faster. Less frustration, and less need for full computer based research and workout
  • Of course no answer is ever free from Codecademy. Users still have to think and guess a bit. That's the part that Codecademy does the best: remove traditional computer science learning obstacles, but still make the lessons engaging, educational, and gamified with fun. 
  • De-myth: if you know how to use an iPhone you can code! And a lot of people can use iPhones. Codecademy is doing its best to get everyone to understand how to code.


  • Works out of the box: no need to log in.
  • JavaScript, the language of the web
  • iPhone ready: flat design, responsive works well visually on iPhone and iPad, tap and type features, tap and select 

  • Gamified
  • Push notification for new updates
  • Popup overlay displaying results of your code, i.e. console results
  • Multiple choices, there's a correct answer, no more frustrations
  • Walks through important basics

    • String, text, string concatenation
    • Printing
    • Calculations
    • Boolean true or false evaluation
    • Data types
    • Control Flow basics, if ... else ...
    • Variables
    • Functions
    • .... this is a living document and it will be updated. Even for experienced folks like myself I cannot get through codecademy's basic app in 15 minutes. It's indeed non-trivial.
  • Instant Feedback
Every person is different and has different learning styles. Codecademy may work for you, or not. Check out for Hour of Code +Hour of Code 2013  options on iPad, a mobile device.

President Obama's call to action.




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