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Web developer of 20 years

Stephen Adams
I'm a web developer, building apps for my clients using #angular
・1 min read

Hi I’m a web developer with 20years experience, I’ve written a book on Angular and have been working for myself for the last 7 years. Feel free to ask me about working for yourself, contracting, writing and Angular

Discussion (18)

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David Dal Busco

How did you come to the idea a writing books? You always had an interest for becoming a writer and for writing or it was a spontaneous challenge the first time?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Well originally I was approached by a publisher to write for them, eventually that fell through and I had to publish it by myself.
I have always been interested in writing, I have a. English degree 📜 which I’ve never really used.
Writing a book is a challenge, the main issue is being consistent and keeping the momentum of writing going. But if you are writing a large book it can seem like it’ll never be released.
I would write another one, but it’ll be smaller in scale, something on a small topic, like using a library like NgRx or writing unit tests.
It is well worth writing as it makes you learn more about a topic, you need to know the finer details of the topic of the book in order to be able to explain it to the reader.

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David Dal Busco

I've got a huge respect for such achievement and commitment. Thx for sharing this story and for your books of course. Looking forward to the next one 😉

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Cheers David

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Mark Harless

At what direction do you think web development will go in the next two years?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Hey Mark, I don't think there are going to be massive changes over the next few years. The big 3 frameworks are going to keep releasing new features, that may be cool, but might not be needed or used as much as originally thought.
I do think that reactive programming will become more and more popular. Now that the use of Observables and RxJS are becoming more and more popular, the idea of writing web applications using this reactive approach will become a more standardised way (I see this in the Angular ecosystem ).

I also think that being able to write cross-platform applications will continue to be important, especially for companies who want to have one team who can write apps for all platforms. VSCode will still be very popular (though I'm a Webstorm fan)
Hopefully, remote working will become more popular with businesses, that'll be good, but I can't see the web industry-changing drastically over the next 2 years. Now the JavaScript framework madness we had a few years ago has started to die down. I can see people now wanting to know how to write good software based on good software principles, instead of using a new framework.
But we'll see, it's still going to be a very exciting time to be a web developer, that's for sure.
What do you think will happen in the next couple of years? Do you agree or disagree with my ideas?Let me know.

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Anower Jahan Shofol

Do a web developer need to learn new technologies continuously throughout the whole career?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Hi, you do need to keep up with current trends and approaches. Especially if you want to work for yourself as a contractor.
You don’t need to know everything, that’s not possible, but have good basics and maybe specialise in a certain approach. For me I’m mainly Angular.
But continuously learning is what makes being a web developer exciting, trying to learn every new thing is what causes developers to stress out.

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Anower Jahan Shofol

Thanks Stephen for the answer from your experience.

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Chris Achard

What surprised you the most about your writing experience? What was the hardest part?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Hi, I think what surprised me the most about writing this book was that no matter how much you felt you knew about a topic, there was more to learn. Also if you write a section that you felt was really clear and easy to read, it’s so worth rereading as it might not be as clear as you thought it was when you first wrote it.
The hardest part was keeping the momentum behind the writing process. Finding time and consistently writing was hard to keep doing throughout the writing stage.
Still once it’s done it’s great to see it out there.

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Chris Achard

Yeah, I've re-read some of the things I've written in the past (that I thought were clear when I wrote them), only to find them super confusing later... same as code I guess :)

And I could see how momentum could be a really big issue, yeah.

Thanks for the answers!

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Bill Mitchell

Is there anything from web development 20 years ago that you miss?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Hi Bill, I think the thing I miss the most from web development 20 years ago is how straight forward things were back then.
All you had to do as a web developer was write HTML for 1 or 2 screen sizes, maybe 2 different browsers. To get started building a website all you did was create a couple of folders on your C drive, (if you was using IIS) and there you go.
So things were more simple then, but the opportunities are far better now. As a web developer, we can make sites and app for such a wide variety of platforms. There is far more professionalism now about being a web developer now, now it's more of a craft than back then, no one really knew or cared about the work you were doing as long as they eventually had a thing called a 'website'.

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Josh

Question about working for yourself: How do you get into working for yourself?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Hi Josh, well I was working full time for a company, who decided to relocate to the US, which led to them letting me go. So why looking for a new full time job, I saw a contract role, which I went for. I was lucky enough to get the job, and stayed there for a few months. After that I went onto another contract role, and kept on contracting.
Now 7 years later I can’t see me going back working permanently for a company, well that depends who they are.
I think that why I’m not a freelancer in the traditional sense, I do have flexibility in what contracts I apply for and through contracting I’ve had more different opportunities open to me, including writing my book. It’s been great and I have no regrets starting to work for myself.

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BinConsole

Thanks for the AMA.

Do you have experience with remote work?

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Stephen Adams Ask Me Anything

Yep, as a contractor you have to work in many different places. So I’ve been lucky enough to work remotely for a couple of contracts.
I think remote working is great, due to the flexibility and work balance it gives you.
With tools like slack and zoom i can see remote working becoming more and more popular, especially for web developers.