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Alex Morton
Alex Morton

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Loving React & Ready to Start a Big New Project!

This post was originally published on September 8, 2020 on my blog.

Happy Tuesday, folks! I had a slow day yesterday getting back into the swing of things after a phenomenal weekend away visiting an amazing locale here in France.

Despite it being slow yesterday, though, I still spent a few hours working on my React studies. I'm currently using Dave Ceddia's ebook, Pure React - I purchased it earlier this year and have had it all this time, so once I decided to fully dive into React (after getting a great handle on JavaScript fundamentals), it was great that I already had the resource to use.

I've given myself six weeks to move through it by working on it a few hours on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. So far (I'm on Week 4 of that time constraint), it's going swimmingly and I'm on track to fully complete it by the end of Week 6.

Speaking of time constraints, I'm about to get started on another 6-week side project! (I work in these 6-week periods because it helps to give true structure to the project and I can see my progress/if I need to speed up a bit, etc).

See also: this excerpt from Basecamp's Shape Up (highly recommend, by the way):

We work in six-week cycles. Six weeks is long enough to build something meaningful start-to-finish and short enough that everyone can feel the deadline looming from the start, so they use the time wisely. The majority of our new features are built and released in one six-week cycle.

Our decisions are based on moving the product forward in the next six weeks, not micromanaging time. We don’t count hours or question how individual days are spent. We don’t have daily meetings. We don’t rethink our roadmap every two weeks. Our focus is at a higher level. We say to ourselves: “If this project ships after six weeks, we’ll be really happy. We’ll feel our time was well spent.” Then we commit the six weeks and leave the team alone to get it done.

This is essentially how I manage myself and my projects, and I love it because it ensures that I actually ship my projects and concretely build my skills.

(I also have a guide on this same process! Feel free to get your hands on it here >> )

Anyway, I'm going to be launching my latest side project, which is rebuilding a site I previously built using Squarespace (in my pre-coding days) by using React for the frontend and Firebase Firestore for the backend.

The main make-up of the site is basically individual city guides for many (many!) cities and towns here in France for current and future teaching assistants through the TAPIF program to use.

Fun-fact! I was once-upon-a-time a teacher in France through this program, and that's how I was first able to move to France to live and work!

Anyway, I'm really excited to get to work on it! This week, I'll probably start scoping out everything that's needed so that I can hit the ground running on the building stage!

For now, I'm mostly trying to think about organizing the data in the most efficient way for when the site renders each city guide.

Stay tuned!

P.S. Did you know I have a podcast with new episodes each Wednesday? Go listen right over here >>

The Ladies Code Collective Podcast cover art

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