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Snippet of Code by Pankaj Patel on Unsplash
Snippet of Code by Pankaj Patel on Unsplash

The Dante-esque rings of tutorial hell are slowly making their boundaries known. It’s been easy, as a freshly certified front-end web developer, to find comfort and safety in tutorials, free code camps, basic how-to videos, and super cheap boot camp courses. Having a full-time job whilst attempting a career switch also make tutorials an attractive way to pretend like I’m making headway in web development.

Truth is, I don’t think I’m making the headway I think I am. These tutorials are just iterations of the basic, foundational knowledge of how to use HTML/CSS to create a responsive page. I haven’t even touched JavaScript because of my frustrations during the nanodegree. It was overwhelming and to be quite frank, I don’t want to deal with the mystery of figuring out why I keep getting an error and not being able to decipher my own code to find a solution.

This is a terrible truth I’m making known — one I imagine doesn’t look too well on future employers.

Here’s another truth I’ve recently discovered: As much as I like the coding and manipulating the DOM with code, I’m more interested in the experience of the person using the platform/site/tool, etc.

I like seeing how code is translated into a working, interactive page, however, I’m more interested in learning why certain layouts or functions work and others don’t, i.e. talking to a person using the tool, going over their experiences, iterating on the designs, and working with a team to produce a product that’s not only designed well but functions well.

In the hopes of staying clear of the tenfold tutorials online, I’ve resulted in doing “challenges.” There’s the Freecode Camp curriculum, and more recently I stumbled across the Adobe Xd Daily Design Challenge (post to come on that), and this weekly coding challenge from Florin Pop.

Maybe these are iterations of tutorials themselves, but so far, I think I’m learning more about front end development and UX design from these, combined with the tutorials I’ve already watched. We’ll see how that pans out.

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