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Dharmesh Shah's profile photoAK Adapa's profile photoLionel Di Giacomo's profile photo
love reading this post. love the progression. At the end, that is some real ninja stuff. i am sure you come across haystacksearch and debug toolbar and may have forgotten to include them. Your "...why Phython is marriage material" got me more interested in Python. thanks!
I failed to post my comment readably on the post directly, but want to appreciate you for having written it. It has given me a lovely moment to both see the learning process of an accomplished developer, and to reflect on my own, less linear progression. 

Here is the comment I tried to post, in case you wanted to read it:

My evolution:
1996: Make my first website in 6th grade by myself on my schools dial-up modem pool account. Tool around, stealing animated gifs and novel snippets from around the web. Every one of my 256 colors is amazing. A friend shows me his even cooler website, with many nested tables with exaggerated edges. Am humbled and awed by his ridiculous mayan pyramid style header and resolve to learn the black art of tables.

1998: Have learned every attribute available for nearly every HTML tag. Have begun mastering photoshop and made custom headers for my own Goldeneye 007 fan page. Sadly get mixed up in a keynabbing operation at school, and lose my modem pool account and computer lab access.

2000: Grade 10. After a hiatus from programming, my personal blog designed in tables is totally sweet, utilizing photoshop slices, image maps, and an external style sheet. I begin dipping into javascript to create some crude rollovers. I've decided Dreamweaver is frustrating and stick with notepad.

2001: Get a team job designing a web framework for JNBridge. It is a sort of teen-empowerment project, but I lead the charge. CSS and the idea of making a change in one place to affect all my pages has charmed me completely. I design and write a simple but functional javascript based templating system, pulling headers, sidebars, and footers seperately from content. I feel proud, and begin to firmly understand how to make a complex web product.

2003: Get a job designing a PHP software suite for a start-up temp agency. Client tries to use an unsecured prototype for their website and try to underpay me, claiming I had finished to product and wanted to overcharge. Learn a valuable lesson about contracts and choosing clients.

2004: Feel like a shut-in, start distancing myself from computers and trying to get into other things. Design a few flash based websites for artists and expositions. Still learning as I go, having no idea what I'm doing until I do it.

2005: Get an IT job which actually gives me shell access back. Relearn VI and Emacs to my delight, and learn Perl to write basic web-accessible monitoring scripts. Learn a lot about CGI, and gain an understanding and interest in Linux for web development. 

2006: Lose my job, and abandon programming nearly entirely, forgetting everything.

2013: Finally accepted that web development was a great skillset after years of grocery store jobs, have realized women won't like me any less for being a programmer, and trying to relearn everything. Lost in the woods. The internet jungle has gotten huge. Decided to fallback to wordpress based websites with Headway theme to ease myself back into work. PHP seems familiar, but Python seems essentially smarter. New CSS is incredible, but overwhelming. Cross-browser considerations have gotten easier in some ways, but being self taught, libraries like JQuery feel like cheating, especially when I never really learned the fundamentals. Learning JQuery anyway. Trying to use MySQL again, but doubtful that it is the right choice. Responsive design seems theoretically simple but in practice incredibly time consuming. Never heard of gutters before last month, and I keep hearing about node.js but still can't quite wrap my brain around AJAX-loading content into my site, let alone what I'd use node for. Reading books and tutorials flips from boring review to frustrating non-understanding in minutes flat. Feeling eternally rusty and brand new at the same time. 

The new landscape of the web is hard and diverse, but I'm determined to catch up and learn to work in teams. I feel like I have it in my bones, even if not yet in my brain and fingers. 

Thanks again for the post, It has given me some time to reflect on my own tentative journey through web development, and even gives me a bit of a roadmap to think about while I foray into the new web.

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