Hey CodeNewbies! I'm Saron Yitbarek — Founder of CodeNewbie. I introduced myself here a few weeks back but today, I thought I'd open up a dialogue with you!
A few other things about me:
- I'm a podcaster for the CodeNewbie Podcast and DevNews
- I'm a software developer
- I'm currently building Disco which will provide audio courses on technical topics
- I wore a t-shirt to my wedding
- I'm super excited to answer any questions you have in the comments below!
Top comments (49)
What is your advice to newbie coders considering taking a "less technical job" because they haven't had success in their job search for a coding job?
For people who think they are ready for a junior developer position, but not finding success in the job market.
Ooo good question! I think it's hard to say without understanding the financial implications of waiting for the right job. If you can wait, I think it's probably safer to wait, but if you need the money, by all means, go and get paid! But if you take a less technical job, I'd make it clear to whoever is hiring you and who your manager will be that your ultimate goal is getting a junior developer position. I'd ask them if there are on-ramps to getting to that role, what support and resources they offer for that transition, how often they hire from within, and if there's a way you might be able to do some coding as part of your less technical role. If you see a path at the company where you can get to where you ultimately want to be, I think taking a less technical job can be a smart move.
How did you get into software development?
I got interest in coding when I was working at startups and felt like what the developers were doing was so much more interesting than the business development stuff that I was doing. I also felt like as far as career planning, there was more of a future and job security in being a developer. But it took me a few years to ultimately make the switch and learn to code full-time. Before that, I tried a bit of the Intro to Programming course on MIT Open Courseware, which intimidated the hell out of me. It was really discouraging and delayed my entry to coding by a few years because it just made me feel like I couldn't do it and that coding wasn't for me. But I tried again, thanks to Codecademy and a few other platforms like Treehouse, that made it way more accessible. And now I'm here!
I’m curious where the idea for Disco came from? You’re a great podcaster and communicator, so was it just the next logical step?
And a follow up question. What hurdles did you encounter getting that business off the ground?
Yup! I'd say it was a logical next step. I love audio and I love education and helping people move forward in their career and this felt like a great way to continue on that journey. I'd say the biggest hurdle getting the business off the ground was picking what community and what type of content to focus on. Producing audio courses means you can cover any topic, and I tried and tested a few that didn't work before I landed on machine learning and that one seemed to stick!
Hey Saron, big fan of CodeNewbie Podcast, there is a lot of good information from some really interesting guests. I was wondering when you were first getting started coding, what was something you wished you knew then? Perhaps something that would have made things a little easier on yourself? Maybe even a few things : ) Hindsight is always 20/20 and all us newbies could learn valuable lessons from that perspective.
I love this "fun fact." As someone currently planning a wedding, how did you ultimately make this outfit decision?
lol I'm cheap and pride myself on being non-traditional so wearing a dress was out. And to be honest, the wedding just wasn't important to us. We'd been together six years, had already been living together, shared bank accounts, did all the serious adult relationship stuff, and getting married just felt like a formality. So it wasn't important enough to us to be worth fussing and getting dressed up over. My mother strongly disagrees lol
I love this fact too.
Does the t-shirt have any significance (a favorite design, a plain shirt, etc)?
Nah, not really. It's just a shirt I like :)
Hey Saron 👋🏼
When you started CodeNewbie, did you ever think it would turn out to be so popular? Did you have a gut feeling or were you just shooting for the stars?
Congratulations on the roll-out of Codenewbie. I look forward to seeing where it might go. I have been reading Dev.to for over a year now and really like the depth and breadth of content. The content of Dev.to (in my tiny mind ;)) encompasses both newbie tips and sophisticated and detailed advice. Seeing your AMA here made me want to reach out.
Q.What was your goal or vision on how you felt Codenewbie could be different from Dev.to? And what lead you to this conclusion?
This morning I woke to read both Dev.to and Codenewbie and found two identical articles on each site.
My point is (not to blame/shame but) that when I looked at the two posts I could not tell which site was most appropriate for that content.
Q.Even though it is still early, do you feel that Codenewbie is going in the direction you foresaw?
Best to you,
Great question! Right now, we're for sure cross-posting so we can build up some momentum and kick-start the content creation process, but we're hoping that's more of a short-term thing. Dev.to and CodeNewbie definitely have some overlap but I think there's value in having a community that's explicitly for beginners. Having a safe space on the internet where everything is optimized for people just getting started with topics that are designed for their experience level, where there might be more stories as opposed to more technical content, is very valuable to new devs and people who may not quite be ready for the range and technical expertise that Dev.to offers, and that's what we aim to be.
I've always wanted CodeNewbie to have a home on the internet, and this is the first time I feel like we've had that, so it's definitely going in the direction that I'd hoped. Before this, we lived on a bunch of other people's platforms and now, we finally have a place of our own! I'm really excited to see all the awesome stuff people make and share here :) I hope that answers you question!
I've been attempting to learn JS for a while now... Started learning for about a month and a half but then school appeared... During when I was struggling I came along a discord server that helped me greatly about the basic knowledge of coding, github, etc.
But, then I realized that all of these youtube/online tutorials wasn't really going to help me actually learn and understand each string/function/variable in JS (and including npm packages). Can you help me? This is the last website I could find that is based off of this topic.
In regards to your new venture Disco, who is your targetted demographic? How will disco be better than other edtech websites, considering they have video too which is particularly helpful in explaining technical topics?
If you were starting from zero: and you wanted to learn programming / or design - or whatever - as deeply - but also as soon as possible to get into the industry... in a position so you could be getting paid while learning... what path would you take?
Congrats on launching CodeNewbie. I am working on my own social network type of site right now and I wanted to know, how did you spread the word and share your site with others. What was the development process for the site like over time?
Hey there 👋🏻
What’s your favorite programming-language?
Whats your opinion about Lisp? ^^
I've never tried it, so I don't really have one!
What are your suggestions for someone who wants to start podcasting or create Youtube videos?
Podcasts are tough. I think they're a really great medium as a consumer, but as a producer, it's really hard to grow and get discovered. I got lucky that I was invited to a bunch of other people's podcasts and had a bunch of speaking gigs that helped me get exposure. In fact, I actually launched the CodeNewbie Podcast while I was a panelist on someone else's show and they helped me promote it to their already huge audience. That helped me so much.
YouTube videos are way more work than a podcast, but the upside is the discoverability. Videos are easier to share, repost, they get tagged and indexed better, all making it easier to get viewers. If I was starting from scratch and didn't have much of an audience, I'd probably start with YouTube videos.
I don't really make YouTube videos, so take what I say with a grain of salt, but if I were going to do videos, I'd make short little videos that are super specific. I'd try and find topics that are commonly searched or errors that people are likely to look up. I'd also look at other coding videos that are super popular and see what works and how I might find things to either try out myself or identify things that are missing from their content that I can do. Hope that helps!
Thanks for this elaborate explanation and for sharing your experience it is definitely utilitarian.
I am self-taught programmer currently living in Myanmar. I have 4 years experiences as Backend developer majoring java language, Spring boot.Let me know how to get job on abroad. I asked this because almost all countries facing with covid 19 cases.