A simple walkthrough for beginners to improve the APIs you build.

Photo by Arnold Francisca on Unsplash

We all know the importance of having good testing. It makes our code more reliable and easier to maintain. Now think of the last project you built, and think of how much test coverage you had. 75%? 50%? …10%? I’m definitely guilty of neglecting testing when it comes to my personal projects. I tell myself that I will go back and add tests, since I know my app can only benefit, but I rarely actually do so. Instead, I move on to the next project.

This is where Test-Driven Development, or TDD, really shines. It is the simplest way to…

Using Code, Content, and Connection to Land Your Next Role

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The job search process can be a daunting one, especially for early career developers and career changers trying to break into the industry. And there is no shortage of advice out there. Having worked as a recruiter, and as someone currently going through the job search as a career changer myself, here’s the three-pillared approach I am using to not just land a job, but also build a sustainable career.


It’s easy to get wrapped up in sending job applications and messaging hiring managers all day. You put your head down and focus on the job search and then you…

A Tool For Objective Self-Discovery

“And I used to have a little book called the bug book, where I’m the bug and I’m studying the bug called Jim.”

In his interview on The Tim Ferris Show, business author Jim Collins talks extensively about his journaling practice, inspired by a mentor who suggested that he study himself like a bug. I tried out Jim’s journaling approach, and benefitted greatly, so I built BugBook.

The purpose of Bug Book is to help users discover and learn more about themselves. In Jim’s words, “We struggle in our 20s to get clarity about how to deploy ourselves in the…

Drinking from a Firehose, on a Rollercoaster, Through a Whirlwind, and Other Clichés

You thirsty? — — — Photo by Michael Jeffrey on Unsplash

It’s honestly pretty difficult to believe that I’m already nearly a third of the way through my software engineering program with Thinkful.

Just two months ago, I was drilling FreeCodeCamp and CodeWars. I came into bootcamp with what I thought was a fairly solid grasp of basic JavaScript and HTML. And I definitely did.

But man, has the past month been like drinking from a firehose.

In the past 5 week’s I’ve:

  • Exponentially increased my JavaScript, HTML, and CSS skills
  • Learned jQuery
  • Got comfortable with jQuery
  • Built a Shakespeare Quiz application
  • Learned how to use APIs
  • Created a Bookmarks application

The process behind my first major bootcamp project

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We went from zero to web app REAL fast. This project began in the middle of our second week of class, so we’d had only seven days of instruction before hand. Our assignment was to, with a partner, create a simple quiz app, with at least 5 questions, and we we had two days to do it. Well, really one and a half, since the morning of day one was taken up with our usual lecture and pair programming assignments. All we had learned at this point was basic JavaScript, HTML, CSS, and jQuery, so that’s all we used.


Photo by Alejandro Escamilla on Unsplash

Enrolling in Thinkful’s bootcamp was easy. All it took was one $12,000 click of the mouse, and that was it. The chips were down, and I definitely felt a strong sense of “failure is not an option”. I needed to set myself up for success as best as possible and attempt to learn as much as I could on my own before my first day. I needed a plan.

The problem was…there. is. so. much. to. learn. I wondered what to focus on. Should I just drill basic JavaScript? Become as comfortable as possible with HTML and CSS? …

The first step on my journey from Shakespeare to software

Photo by Ilya Pavlov on Unsplash

When COVID hit, I was working for a small talent acquisition firm as a recruiter. After the initial stress of an abrupt switch to work-from-home wore off, I felt like I was able to find another gear. I was setting personal bests week after week on the majority of performance metrics that we tracked. With two hours worth of commuting cut out of my day I was getting more sleep, spending more time with my partner, and felt happier than I had in a long while. With ironic thanks to COVID, I’d hit my stride.

Then I had my quarterly…

Andrew Coleburn

Big ‘ole nerd. Software Developer @ Bitovi. Follow me on Twitter @ARColeburn

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