CodeNewbie Community

Adam Seay
Adam Seay

Posted on

First Step

This is my opening salvo in what I hope to be a beneficial and resourceful catalog of my learning journey as I try and tackle Python, data science, machine learning, and wherever else the path may wind.

Before anything else, I want to thank @anitabe404 , who I found on Twitter and then discovered this site from there and immediately became inspired to sign up and try and document this process. I'm doing this for two reasons: 1) I want the transparency and the expectation of knowing that there are other eyes on my progress; I've completed a bachelor's degree entirely online, and every minute of my self-study has been done alone...my hopes is that tracking my work online will help keep me accountable and give me the courage to push myself even further, and 2) on the flip side of the same coin, I want to make friends and meet people with these same ideals! Doing this basically alone has been alright for somebody like me, I'm pretty self-sufficient, but I'm ready to branch out and collaborate.

A little bit about me: I'm 33, and in the Spring of this year completed my bachelor's in Computer Information Systems, a jack-of-all-trades program that was beneficial in a broad sense, but also left me wanting a lot more. I struggle constantly with wanting to learn, let's say, too much; my interests are so expansive that I end up knowing a little bit about many things, but never enough to really create or produce anything of value. I overexert myself because I, irrationally, feel like my age is a humongous anchor and that I'm trying far too late to work on a foundation; that I have to push myself to make up for lost time, as if such a thing is even possible. Another benefit of documenting my progress is to possibly reign in this frenzy, and to finally focus my attention on an expertise that I can use to work towards my ultimate goal.

This ultimate goal is to contribute in any meaningful way to the fight against adverse climate change, and to help pave the way towards a post-scarcity, resource-based economy. It feels a little embarrassing to write out, like when someone at a beauty pageant says they want world peace; such a rosy aspiration, and yet on its face probably something not to be taken too seriously. But my stance on the subject is that everybody has a role to play in the push towards a better world, and when everybody adds their contribution no matter how small, then it matters and is significant.

But I'll stop here for now, if you've read this far then thank you, I promise not to ramble so much in the future. If you're new here as well, tell me what is it that you're working towards? What drives you forward, has you pouring over books in the late hours?

accountability #python #pythonbeginner #beginners

Discussion (3)

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mccurcio profile image
Matt C • Edited

Hey Adam,
Welcome aboard!

Congrats on your Baccalaureate degree. That means you are erudite. haha
I have taken a slew of short-courses online but I would get nutty if I got my entire BS that way. Kudos!

As for wanting to learn it all, I think that is common for anyone who is curious and (even a little) ambitious. I struggle with this all the time. For me, "It is a Marathon Not a Sprint" is my motto, when I remember it. haha

Another way I look at finding hobbies or career-paths (or what ever you call it) later in life is similar to hiking in the woods. You may come across a pond along your hike and take a swim. You don't regret the swim you took. You get back on a path and go, after all.

I think groups like this and dev.to , hashnode, FCC, blogs are the best way to stay up to date. These can be a great or terrible diversion, if you don't watch out.

Let me know if I can help in some way. ;)

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r002 profile image
Robert Lin

Hi Adam! Thank you for taking the time to write this wonderful post and share your story! Everything you said totally resonates with me as well. 🙂 Congrats on finishing your CIS BS too; that's a huge achievement! I'm totally in the same boat about having a ton of interests and really empathize with the constant "master of none" feeling. Know you're not alone! Swyx once wrote a great article about "learning in public" which I think is a heartening and great point though-- We all may all be in different places but there's tremendous value in leaving a trail of "learning exhaust." Once upon a time, even the greats --the Wozniaks and Jon Skeets of the world-- all sat where you are today! Everyone literally started where you are now! And so it's never too late to begin! 💪

To your two points though-- this may interest you! Anita and I (and Matt, once upon a time-- you're always welcome back! 👋) are actually part of a small online study group. We started back at the beginning of May and submit "cards" (a templated GitHub issue) every day recapping what we've learned or are working on that particular day. We love documenting our daily progress and sharing our challenges and achievements 🥳. The system's simple but just centralizes everything in one place and also calculates and tracks streaks (number of consecutive days of contribution); it's been really helpful and gratifying for us to look back and see our progress over the weeks and months. Everyone's working on something different but it's all been a ton of fun just being part of a cohort and sharing that learning journey along the way-- you're totally welcome to join us if you wish! If you're curious, you can find us as at studydash.github.io . Our cards range in everything from Python and analytics to Firebase, JavaScript testing, and random book notes. (There's even some Blender 3D animation and BFS pathfinding in there too! 😂) It's all over the place!

In any case, I look forward to seeing your posts here on CodeNewbie or wherever else you may post! (And StudyDash is open to literally everyone; anyone using a GitHub account can just submit a card here and it's off to the races!) The world is vast and wonderous! Let's go exploring! 😄

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PS. Btw, I don't think you "ramble" at all. 😊 At Saturday morning Torah study, we always talked about "Tikkun olam"-- by just doing our small bit in the world, as you say, in whatever role or capacity we can, that builds towards a better future. It is never for naught and this positive and ever-hopeful, two-handed, can-do spirit is never anything to be embarrassed about! Let's do it!! 🚀🎉

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anitabe404 profile image
Anita Beauchamp

Welcome to the CodeNewbie community!!!

I'm happy that I led you here, and I hope that you find the community and connection that you're looking for.

Congrats on earning your Bachelor's degree. That's a significant achievement. Many of us struggle with "wanting to learn and do it all"; I'm the same way. Posting in the community and setting clear goals has helped me stay on track. I also leave room for exploration though because it helps me stay motivated.

As for age and feeling like getting a late start, this is also something that many of us struggle with. I hope that as you continue on in your studies, you're able to set aside that belief and just thrive in the learning and the new journey that you're on.

I'm also learning Python, Data Science, and ML, so I'm sure we'll see each other around.

Matt @mccurcio is also into python and data science. He knows a lot of good resources.