Week 6 & 7 & 8 Per Scholas: Core Java

“Give a man a program, frustrate him for a day.
Teach a man to program, frustrate him for a lifetime.”
Muhammad Waseem

Coding is a new language. It should frustrate you.

I grew up,in the mid-90’s, trying to figure out how my friends and I could create a adhoc network to play Starcraft, Warcraft, Age of Empires, and more. It was frustrating becuase of the challenges lugging actual desktop machines and CRT monitors around, lots of cables everywhere, and sometimes really frustrating conversations…

However, when we would be able to get it to work, it made playing those games so much sweeter.

I am relatively new to programming languages and the pace with which we have been learning concepts has been “drinking from a fire hose”

Most of the day has been in a lecture format focused on Core Java these 2 weeks. The concepts ran from getting the compiler to just print out integers ,which seemed super basic, all the way to connecting to an Oracle database server and retrieving and manipulating the information.

The slack channel our class uses wasn’t really seeing much use until we started actually doing problems and mini-projects. Now it pings pretty consistently throughout the day with Stack Overflow forum posts, new resources, or other programming topics.

Because there are so many aspects of Java that we are covering, I think the thing that would make the program even better is just more fingers clackin’ on the keyboard.

I have looked at code academy on their java problemsets and it is helpful and has a lot of guardrailsand helpful hints…but means a lot of people can speed through their tutorials.

So the best problem work I have found for Core Java is from the University of Washington.

It doesn’t have many guardrails and basically either says it is right or wrong and that’s it. Some are easy, many are not, but the sheer amount of problems reference in one text is daunting.

Each concept from binary to escape characters and logic sequences have at least 3 associated problems to drive home the point. I give an example of one using escape characters below.

I highly recommend using this if you are going through a later programming class or just want to brush up on your Core Java concept skills.

So what about outside of class?

Since life happens, my wife called me after class one evening, to mention our sewer line backed up and calling a plumber, who camera’d it, recommended we replace the entire sewer line at a cost of $4100.

It’s what happens when you own a house built in the 50’s when your main sewer line is clay, installed in 3' sections, and then live in East Texas where tree roots scour the soil for moisture.

Now, I thought I’d put it off till I got a job, but 2 days later it backed up again. And again a week later. So by Thanksgiving, we should have a brand new sewer line.

I will say being gone from my family during the week is easier and tougher all at the same time. It is easier in the sense, that my responsibilities are lower. I come home, eat dinner, facetime, code, watch a youtube video or two, and then sleep. It is quiet and I don’t have 3 young boys screaming, punching, or whining from the moment I pick them up from school..

It is much harder because I also don’ t have 3 boys laughing, playing, or telling me every 30 seconds “Look, Dad! See what I did.” It is harder because my youngest is asking why I have to go.

So What about jobs?

I have been applying and have gotten to 2 final interviews. One for a Project Manager 1 Position and the other for an Application Developer. The latter hired internally and the second I am still interviewing. Before Thanksgiving they gave me a list of 6 more interviews. It will be 9 in total if I make it through. Sheesh.

But I am trying to focus my efforts on project manager positions or cybersecurity jobs. I don’t want to rely on an interview with Cognizant…Especially since I now have a beautiful new sewer line to pay for.

Thanks for reading, enjoy your end of read treat!



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Father of 3 boys, husband of a real beauty, while being a project manager and developer focused on making life useful and better for all.