Can you introduce yourself?
My name is Shane Murphy, I am 35 years old and I currently live in North Carolina.
How did you get interested in programming?
I first learned about programming about 5 years ago. I was living in Houston, Tx for about a year and fell on some very hard times. I was in a bad situation financially and homeless in the streets of Houston. All my family and friends lived back in NC so I didn’t have any help. Needless to say, I was struggling and running out of hope. At one point I was staying with a co-worker and I ran across a blog about a guy who taught himself web development using free online resources and went from making 9/hr at a seafood restaurant to making 38/hr at a major media company only 3 years later at 26 years old. I then researched more about the industry and seen that it was true and that many others were breaking into the industry without a degree. I have always been into technology and good with computers so I dove in headfirst. I was working two part-time jobs at the time, so I saved up my money and bought a laptop for $150 bucks. I found codecadamy.com and started from there. From there I went to Teamtreehouse, Freecodecamp and any other resource I could find. Ever since then I have been honing my skills and building a portfolio of all my projects.
Where do you learn new skills?
I have used almost every free and paid resource on the web: Codecadamy, TeamTreehouse, Freecodecamp, Youtube, etc. When I found CodingPhase’s channel on youtube years ago, it gave me hope and confidence that I was on the right track. As well as a community that I felt connected to. Joe gave me the advice to take certain courses on Udemy and I listened and completed all of those. Every time I have listened to his advice I always feel like I leveled up afterward. So Codingphase and Udemy have probably been the biggest gamechanger for me, I have become a lot better with my skillset due to these two resources.
What do you love the most about programming?
What I love the most about programming is the ability to make something cool out of nothing. It is the most empowering feeling when you look back at what you created. Especially when you struggle with a bug that is breaking your project, and you search for the solution frustrated for hours, and then finally you fix it, that feeling is amazing. Another thing I love is that you are constantly learning. There is always something new to learn, so you are always getting those little feelings of accomplishment pushing you along. I have never found anything else in my life that gives me the same feeling that web development gives me. It has given me purpose, and literally pulled me out of poverty, homelessness, and despair.
What do you hate about programming?
I can’t say there is anything I hate about programming. There are many things that annoy me, but those same problems once solved are the reason I love it.
Are you currently working as a developer?
For the last few years, I have been freelancing and have built sites for a few companies along the way. This gave me experience and helped build my resume with projects to show. I applied for jobs seriously for the past year or so with not too much luck. Finally, early in 2019, I landed my first job with a small digital marketing agency as a webmaster. I have loved every minute of it and I learn new things every single day. It’s true what they say, you learn so much more working for a company on real projects than you could ever learn by only following tutorials. So my advice to everyone is to never give up, and keep applying for jobs no matter what, and to never stop leveling up your skills.
What’s your favorite stack or type of application?
I can’t really say, because I haven’t gotten too far into using any particular stack. I am going to start learning react.js very soon so the MERN stack sounds appealing. But as of now, I only have experience experimenting with the LAMP stack.
What’s a technology or language or skill you wish to learn in the future?
React is definitely the next thing on my list to learn and master. As I progress in web development I think I am gravitating more to the front end. I think it suits my capabilities better, and I enjoy it more than backend languages.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years I see myself in a senior position in a good company while mastering many skills. I also aim to develop passive income through my blogs and many niche sites. Eventually, I want to have my own companies and have enough passive income to travel the world and work on cool projects of my own. That is the dream for me, being financially free and comfortable, all while doing what I love to do.
If you were to go back into time and give yourself the advice to make it easier to learn to code what would you say?
If I could go back in time, I would have started learning to code way earlier in my life, before I had a long list of responsibilities to manage at the same time. I would have went super hard and mastered many skills so I could be financially free at an early age, and I would have more time doing the things I enjoy, like spending time with my family, travel, and learning new things.
Check out my blog: Level Up Dev , its a portal for learning web development and I create content to teach through my experiences. I would like to help all newcomers avoid the mistakes I made along the way, and to help them learn the skills and get their first job asap. Also, be sure to subscribe to my email list for free content and exclusive information to level up your skillset as soon as possible.
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