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How I created devchallenges.io in just 3 Months in my free time

nghiemthu profile image Thu Nghiem ใƒป3 min read

About me

Hi I am Thu. I am from Vietnam and I moved to Finland 5 years ago (all alone..). I came to study and I got my first job as a game programmer just after 1.5 year of self-studying. Later I got a job as a web developer in one of the biggest company in Finland - Telia. I am working as Developer/Scrum master in the team.

Now I am at the point where going to work everyday become a bit boring, so I decided to do something different. I started to make devchallenges.io after seeing people sharing their stories in dev.to and here is how I make it happen.

Roadmap

Week 1

I gathered inspirations from different sources for designing the website. Most of my time I spent on Dribbble, I picked several designs and I use the colors from them.

After few days, I had a rough idea of what I wanted to do. Then I used Figma - a free tool for design to draw quickly designs in just one weekend.

Alt Text

Week 2 - Week 3

I worked hard in these 2 weeks translating my idea to Code and I completed 75% of application - both frontend and backend

Week 4 - Week 8

The next step is to design challenges.

This is the most challenging part as I have to come up with the ideas and designs. But I manage to do 16 designs at the end by reading different articles and Dribbble :)

Week 9 - Week 12

The last step is to put everything together. There are time when I wanted to give up as I thought it's never going to complete.

There were many I have to redo because it does not make sense when it comes together. But a good thing is whenever I shared my work to my friends they all think that the designs looks goods and it moves me forward.

What I use

I use all the free stuffs here :)

Design:

Front-end:

Back-end:

  • Firebase - I use for hosting, authenticate, database,.. everything it offers.
  • Express - To create RESTful API

Automation:

How I keep it look professional

When it come to design a website, I want it to look good. And there is no secret to it, as long I keep my spacing and color consistent, it will turn out well eventually.

By using CSS and Sass variables, I manage to do it with ease.

Because I make it look so clean, many of my friends keep asking if this is free. Yes it is free, I am not selling a damn thing there :)))

What next

I will continue work on devchallenges.io and make it better. I already see the first users and I hope there will be more.

I am planning to create a youtube channel where I share my stories and share my experience.

The end

So thank you for reading, I hope this will help you in your personal projects or somehow motivate people to do what I do. And if you want to improve your portfolio then checkout https://devchallenges.io/.

Feel free to leave me a comment.

Discussion (40)

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cryptshell profile image
Rodolfo

Thu, your site is really really beautiful, sleek, modern, sexy and VERY practical! It's such a great idea. I was looking for something like that to practice my skills. Thank you for sharing it. Just followed you.

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Thu Nghiem Author

Thank you so much for your comment Rodolfo. Hopefully to see you more in the future :)

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George Moraitis

Incredible work!!Congratulations!!!I am 60 to 70% in the Junior category right now and I can imagine how hard is to build this site !!!๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘

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Thu Nghiem Author

The hardest part for me was not to give up :) thank you for your kind words

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George Moraitis

I understand completely !!

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hangindev profile image
Jason Leung ๐Ÿง—โ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ’ป

This looks really nice and professional. Thanks for making this for the web!

Could you share what did you study in Finland and how was your life moving there all alone? I am exploring postgraduate study opportunities. Thanks!

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Thu Nghiem Author

I studied Business IT. I was a real struggle at the beginning - didn't know what I wanted, didn't have enough money to buy what I want. But I was lucky to meet nice people but still hard to do everything alone.

I have a nice job currently and people at work are super nice. Last year, I bought my own apartment and now I am living my best life :)).

I do plan to share my life in my youtube channel in the future, glad that someone was curious

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Jason Leung ๐Ÿง—โ€โ™‚๏ธ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ’ป

I bet you are happy with your decision and I am happy for you. Please do share more in your channel.๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿป

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Ankit Beniwal ๐Ÿ™‚

And Now I am waiting for that full-stack path.

Meanwhile I will try other paths. Cool Stuff!

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Thu Nghiem Author

I am working on it atm, you can try Discord for updates :)

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Hebert Romero

Hey dude congrats for your work looks fancy, and its a an amazing work just for u

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Thu Nghiem Author

Thank you dude :)!

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Thu Nghiem Author • Edited

yes I'll consider that in the future thanks for suggestion

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Alejo Garcia

This is great. Do you have a revenue model?

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Thu Nghiem Author • Edited

I have some in mind. But I don't expect too much. I do this because I want to start my own youtube channel. I really hope it will help people more than I earn more money. Tax in Finland is really high :))

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JagpalKooner

AMAZING! I been meaning to look for something like this. Thank you!

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Thu Nghiem Author

nice to hear, I hope you will have a fun time with it :)

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ips-coding-challenge

Amazing work ! ;)

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Thu Nghiem Author

Thank you so much!

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Saravana Kumar Putta Selvaraj • Edited

This really looks perfect to upskill myself. I should thank you for this.
Just a suggestion. Please have the Sidebar(navbar) fixed and let the scrolling be in the content area.

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Thu Nghiem Author

I'll add it to the todo list, please join Discord, you can suggest more features there :)

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Julian Pufler

Awesome work, glad to be a small part of the bigger picture! ๐Ÿ‘

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Rahul Jain

This is so cool๐Ÿ™Œ

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G33kNoob

Seem interesting, maybe you can put patreon or bitcoin donation at bottom..
I will try to solve any problem listed due i learning frontend developer with vue

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Thu Nghiem Author

Sounds great, I'll design more challenges. and yeah patreon may sound easier to do :)

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Dragodzs

Wow, thank you for the inspiration for me โ™ฅ .

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Thu Nghiem Author

happy to hear. Please share it if you can :)

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Ezeganya Victor

I am inspired. How long will it take me to learn figma?

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Thu Nghiem Author

learning the tool is not difficult, but learning the concept is.

I think it will take you 2 days to learn how to use the tool. I am not so sure how long to learn to concept, I learned designing 4 years ago and bit by bit improving over the time :)

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Akshay090

What did you do for state management, like were context and hooks enough.
Did you use useReducer

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ShinaBR2

Thanks for your inspiration.
P/s: hay quรก anh ฦกi :D

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Thu Nghiem Author

haha thank you and minh con tre lam :)

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William Grant

Looks great!

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Htet Lynn Htun

This gonna help me a lot. The site looks awesome.

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Thu Nghiem Author

haha nice to hear :)

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Thuyet

Love the simplicity. I'll give it a go 'cause I'm learning frontend at the moment and looking for practice opportunities.

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Thu Nghiem Author

Xin chao! Glad you like it, and best of luck with your studying :)