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Learning styles and open-sourcing notes

pickleat profile image Andy Pickle Updated on ・2 min read

In June, I decided to sell my stake in the coffee shop I owned to pursue something else. One of our shops was in the Little Rock Tech Park and I got to know some of the entrepreneurs and tech folks in the building. Over the year working at that location I decided tech was an intriguing next step for me. So I quit(!) and started learning to code.
Over the next several weeks I also got a job at one of the tech companies in the building, just doing anything and everything they needed. (I’m still there actually! Vocool is a great place to work!)

One of my coworkers is a really talented Software Engineer and in addition to him answering my endless silly questions about how things work, we also talk a lot about learning styles. Because when you begin learning to code there are so many routes you can take. You can go to a university or take a MOOC, you can go the freecodecamp route or try another online service, you can enroll in a boot camp, or even just watch YouTube videos! Point being, there are several ways to learn, but at the end of the day you may need some help figuring out how you actually learn. I know it took me a few classes before I found my sweet-spot. And honestly one day things did start making more sense.

I am an immersive learner. I don’t just take the class, do my homework and move on. I surround myself with as many sources of information as possible even though I don’t understand. For example, I said “kubernetes” out loud before I had ever heard anyone else say it, that was pretty funny.

Here’s the deal. I love to take notes, a lot of notes, and I’ve always been a bit of a stickler about formatting them. So now that I understand how markdown works (go me!), I’m going to take my notes with it and then post them for all to see. I’ve started a GitHub repo with mine and I’m going to go back and format my notes from my first few classes and post any future classes there as well. A great reference place for me and who knows maybe someone else will find them useful.

So how do you learn best? Is there any particular practice you find useful to retain information?

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