Hello readers! My name is Amanda and I am the Dojo’s newest member here in Cambridge. Words cannot describe how excited I am to be here! I am normally afraid of big changes, but I felt comfortable with this new beginning as I had a gut feeling this team would help me begin my career in this journey. It really helped my anxiety when Victor Fong gave everyone on the team a Lego Pokemon toy after he just returned from a trip. Here he is!

Once I met my team I jumped right into standup with literally no time being wasted to get my day started. Shortly after, I was paired to work on UI project. This exposure to code without needing documentation about it really blew my mind away. However, I get to see Ruby, HTML/CSS, git, and angular JS all in one day! Later, I got to rotate with my team to work on deploying Kubernetes. It can be challenging to understand what is going on, but that is because this is my first time really using things like Ruby or cloud technologies. My week with this new team finished with retro on Friday, which is when we all get together and talk about the good, okay, and bad things that happened during the week. I admitted in the bad category I felt ashamed for taking too longto learn, but I was reassured by the whole team these things take time and that I will get better.

So what have I learned?

  • Ask lots of questions. People want you to learn! There is no such thing as a stupid question. 🙂
  • Things will break. Sometimes it is an easy fix like adding a missing parenthesis. Sometimes it is a challenge that takes a day or two to figure out.
  • Ruby is a weird language. That is all I have to say about that.
  • DevOps is a really efficient way of rapidly delivering code.
  • Test Driven Development and pair programming made my first week feel almost seamless. I say “almost” because I have so much learning to do in order to get familiar with this kind of environment.
  • Tools such as Diego, Kubernetes, and Bosh can do many “things.” You might ask, “What kind of things?” And I could probably tell you they help manage deployment of containers and VMs.
  • Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. They’re something to be learned from.
  • Everyone has something to bring to the table. Share your ideas, even if you might be disagreeing with others.

Hopefully this gives you an idea of how much I learned during my first week, I am fortunate to be working with intelligent individuals who make up an amazing team. From my past experiences, I have never worked so closely with people as I have been since working here. No more contributing to one thing from the confinements of the cube of solitude and instead working with people on multiple project at a given moment. It is so easy to ask anyone what is going on because they are all familiar with the ongoing projects that are happening. Being able to pair with someone has definitely made my transition into this role feel easier. This team is passionate about what they do, and it really motivates me to do my best to get up to speed with their skills. At the time of this post, I have been working in this role two weeks now and the time feels like it elapsed in seconds. I wake up everyday to come to work feeling energized and thrilled to be at the office. Hopefully I can share something more technical next time!

~$ whoami
Before I go, I should probably share a few things about me. My favourite hobbies include: gardening, 3D printing, video games, and reading. This year I have successfully grown various herbs, such as basil and parsley, and I am an avid succulent/cactus collector. I like to 3D print miniatures and tiles that get painted for D&D, which I play occasionally when I find a good group to play with. I have always been a PS2 girl at heart, but I have been playing PC games for the last 4 years now. Lastly, I like to read mostly sci-fi books and I am currently reading through Stephen King’s “The Dark Tower” series. This pretty much sums me up outside of work. So feel free to reach out if you ever want to talk about what I do for work or my hobbies! I would love to get to know more people in this community. 🙂

Amanda Alvarez

Amanda Alvarez

Amanda Alvarez

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