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Cover image for Carolyn Stransky learning her way from journalist to developer and back... and other things I learned recording her DevJourney

Carolyn Stransky learning her way from journalist to developer and back... and other things I learned recording her DevJourney

timothep profile image Tim Bourguignon πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡«πŸ‡·πŸ‡©πŸ‡ͺ Originally published at timbourguignon.fr ・2 min read

This week, I published Carolyn Stransky's #DevJourney story on my eponym Podcast: Software developer's Journey. Among many other things, here are my main personal takeaways:

  • Carolyn's first job in tech was in a Blockchain company, doing digital marketing, trying to explain Blockchain to artists. The experience was good enough for her to want to stay in the tech industry, but not great by any means. She didn't describe it this way, but reading between the lines, I fear she experienced something alike the "bro-culture", mixed with technology-hype...
  • In her next job, Carolyn got to write technical documentation, but it is only in hindsight, now that the became a developer, that she realized that it was indeed documentation for developers.
  • Working closely with developers, Carolyn realized that "they" were treated very differently, as costly resources. That's when the idea emerged that she should maybe cross-over. All but one of her developer colleagues were very supportive and encouraging. The comments of the other one, made her mad. She didn't say it out loud on the show, but reading between the lines, I think it fueled her motivation for switching over.
  • I find it fascinating that Carolyn really googled "how do I become a developer?" to find what to do. Stepping into the realm of the "unknown-unknowns", how do you even start to clear out a path toward a goal that you cannot define? This is one of the goals of this podcast :D
  • Carolyn described how she initially thought there were 3000-ish functions that you could use, and you had to know them by heart, before realizing that functions were something your create and name yourself. I love this description of a paradigm-shift. Sometimes, when you look at it "the wrong way", a task or element looks awfully complicated, whereas taken from the right angle, it instantly makes sense.
  • I love the story of her first talk. All it took was two persons showing genuine interest in her ideas and helping her draw the skeleton of a talk. This was enough to give her the confidence to start. You never know how much impact "helping a little" could have on others.
  • Once again, Carolyn's story is one of meeting people, being selfless and open for opportunities and look where it took her!!!
  • Carolyn feels like including journalism in her future again. In oder to be ready when the opportunity arises, she has taken up freelance writing again. But she is also torn between machine-learning and data-visualization. I am sure she will find her sweet spot between storytelling and tech!

Advice:

  • Include your past in your story, your past is valuable

Quotes:

  • "My CV looks dijointed, but I like to see it like a path"

Thanks Carolyn for sharing your story with us!

You can find the full episode and the shownotes on devjourney.info or directly here on DEV

Did you listen to her story?

  • What did you learn?
  • What are your personal takeaways?
  • What did you find particularly interesting?

Posted on Jun 2 by:

timothep profile

Tim Bourguignon πŸ‡ͺπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡«πŸ‡·πŸ‡©πŸ‡ͺ

@timothep

Host of the DevJourney podcast. Mentoring πŸ₯‘, Technical-Agile-Coach & Chief Learning Officer @ MATHEMA

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