Rather than make this one long and impressively boring tale, I decided to break it up into time-frames so it's easier to digest. I'll begin with my most recent activity since it's the most relevant. After that, I'll convey an abridged recollection of my tale from the very beginning.
2020 - Present
Starting in 2021 I began advertising myself on Upwork, an online freelancing platform. I have completed multiple jobs with a 100% success rate, along with receiving 5 star reviews for each job.
I'm currently contracted as a technical writer for the following companies:
- • Initial Commit LLC - Initial Commit is a blog with various learning resources related to the programming field. I wrote multiple technical articles for them relating to the Git version control system.
- • OhMyCrawl - OhMyCrawl is an SEO consulting company that specializes in technical SEO with an emphasis on React single-page applications. I wrote multiple articles for them relating to React and React metaframeworks such as GatsbyJs and NextJs.
Initial Commit LLC
- GatsbyJs v4 | Deferred Static Generation
- Next JS Server Side Rendering (SSR) Implementation & Optimization
Sidenote: For Initial Commit LLC, I operate under the pseudonym Art Sphitz. For OhMyCrawl, I operate as a ghost writer. If required, documentation can be provided to prove the authenticity of my work.
2012 - 2013
In the beginning... There was classic ASP, and all was good in the universe. Well, not really. ASP was already obsolete; nonetheless, it frames the beginning of my unlikely journey to becoming a developer.
While working in an education department as a clerk, I met an MCSE guy who took me under his wing. He taught me much about domain administration, and the inner workings of Windows OS. Good fortune found me in strange ways during this time.
About a year into training with this gentleman, I happened to find a Wrox Active Server Pages book laying around (better known as classic asp). Since I was the guy all the teachers called when they were having excel problems, I thought hey, why don't I build them a website to record their attendance rather than dealing with these clumsy spreadsheets?
And thus COMAS was born (Comprehensive Office Management Automated System).
While ASP.Net was in full swing, I spent over a year toiling away with classic asp, and I don't regret a minute of it. I built a pretty sweet student tracking machine that offered real-time metrics thanks to centralized data.
COMAS did everything from tracking student hours and recording entry and exit dates, to genereating standardized reports. They liked it so much they used it for over 8 years; and I was hooked.
2013 - 2016
After my experience with asp, I was eager to get my hands on some newer technology. I soon acquired everything I would need to develop with asp.net web forms, and over the next couple years I designed multiple sites using the technology.
In 2014, I build a site called veSwap. It's a site where users can swap vehicles with other users for a scheduled period. So if you have a nice truck, but you want to take a sports car to the beach over the weekend, maybe there's someone out there with a sports car who needs a truck to help move over the weekend!
Around mid-2015, an ex-banker friend of mine, who's very savvy in the world of finance, wrote a book on credit repair. He asked me if I'd be willing to develop a website that promotes his book and his brand. And so I built CreditScoreMaestro.com.
I did a lot of research on SEO for this project, and utilized marketing resources such as Facebook and Google PPC campaigns. It certainly gave me an appreciation for what it takes to improve Google results and increase organic traffic.
2016 - 2020
After my journey with ASP.Net, I began researching the fastest growing platforms and frameworks; I wanted to ensure I was keeping my skillset relevant. Node, Express, and React were obvious standouts.
Me being a project oriented learner, I decided to build a social media site to get a better feel for things. I ended up using a CMS called KeystoneJs, which incorporates a React admin console. Figuring out how to tie in my own React Hot-Loader build with the pre-existing Keystone build was tricky, but I learned a lot about how Webpack works.
I worked on the intricacies of my social media project for quite awhile, and built a number of other small projects as well.
At the start of 2020, my boss asked me to build him a standalone system that could import an Alpha Run from pdf into a sqlite database, and handle some specific tasks for him such as keeping track of current class lists, and export these lists to an excel file for sending via email to all of the respective teachers.
I built him a really cool SPA that does everything he wanted and more!
Since then, I've learned multiple frameworks, such as GatsbyJs and NextJs. I redesigned Credit Score Maetro using the Gatsby framework, and hosted it on Netlify.
I guess you could say my developer story isn't quite average. However, it benefited me in many ways, and I'm a better person and developer for it.
Sidenote: In August of 2020, I was awarded the Unsung Hero gold badge on StackOverflow. I'm quite proud of this badge, as I pride myself on the enjoyment I find in helping others.