I started going down the rabbit hole of the web design/development career as, well, a web designer. I made things pretty for users. That was my focus.
If I could go back in time to 2003, I'd take my backhand to my past self's face, and drop that knowledge. Because, now, I'm paying for it.
Long story, short: I stumbled but came through in the end and delivered. The entire process was rough. I learned what not to do in code. My solution was extremely convoluted and realized there had to be a better way.
All the learning I've done at this point has been that of doing. By doing, I mean, I needed a problem to solve; a task to be done.
I took some time thinking about a problem I wanted solved and finally came up with one that has to do with gaming on my PS3. My brother and I are pretty competitive on certain games and these games have specifications that you can customize based on your style of play. I am being intentionally vague.
I began to flesh out the tools I would use to develop this web application (MEAN stack). Details about what specifications/settings from the game to save on the application were kept on my iPhone Notes application for quick reference and edits.
A couple months down the road, no implementation yet. Then it dawned on me. Why am I creating a web application for this? I don't want a laptop in front of me while I play this game.
Perfect. I've seen some of the most beautiful user interfaces on the iPhone. I want to join the fun!
I spent about a week researching iOS. At the time of writing this post, Apple seems to be in a state of transition with the release of Swift. So if I am going to tackle this, I'll need to learn both Objective C and Swift.
I wanted to start from the bottom and work my way up. This contrasts from my usual way which was learn as you go and if it looks like magic, don't question it and keep on rolling. With this in mind, I needed to find a book that was worthy of being read. These tutorials out there on the Interwebs are either too general or highly specific. I needed to focus on basic concepts. I needed a book that would give me exercises to test me.
I decided on Objective-C Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide 2nd Edition. I read the entire thing in less than a week, great read! For years, I've looked at Objective C syntax with such distaste. After understanding the language it makes sense.
It's been a while since I was excited about coding and design. My journey has been fun so far. My hopes are that one day, it will be both fun and fruitful. Pun intended.