December 28, 2018

Using namespace std

Seems like it was just yesterday when I was programming with some classmates and strangers at a project Euler sprint when the unknown happened. As we were working on the problem I quickly opened my text editor and begin typing out the boiler code. Type,type,tyep…type.

using namespace std;

WOHHH WOHH don’t do that!
What do you mean?
You are importing the entire namespace library.

At this point in my programming journey, I was somewhat new to C++ and only worked extensively with C thus it never crossed my mine when importing the entire stdlib library. I was simply programming without thinking how such an import could save us time when solving time constraint problems.

Why is using namespace std considered bad practice

After that particular meetup, I was intrigued by why such a statement was bad practice and dove deeper to broaden my understanding. Often times when programming we programmers tend to import or use libraries for tedious tasks.

What I found was when you declare using namespace std you are importing the entire namespace library and given your experience you may only use a few of the provided functions declared in c++ standard library.

Use only what you need

Ever since that particular meetup I have written every program in such a way that I only import namespaces that are needed. This has also helped with readability and avoids naming collision especially when using c++ libraries such as boost which may have similar or the exact same namespaces as the standard library.

June 23, 2013

I’m sorry, you’re not the best

Everyone wants to be the best at what they’re doing. No one wants to be told they cannot do this or that you’re not quite ready for that. Rejection is hard and as a human being we have to understand and acknowledged that we’re not the best(not quite yet), but over time we can become the best. Over the last month or so I have experience rejection after rejection in my search for a job or internship. As I were finishing up the semester I was excited for the summer and knew that somehow I would get a job somewhere writing and producing code. As I started interviewing with different companies I knew out of all of them I could at least land one gig. WRONG! Maybe a day or two or even a week later I would receive the same copy and paste email ,"While your skill-set is very impressive, we’ve decided to pursue other candidates". I sat at my computer wondering what could be the problem. Thoughts such as "maybe I am a bad programmer", "I’m not as good as I thought", "my portfolio is not good" wondered in my mind. I had no idea  what I would be doing for the summer since I’ve move to Chicago until the school semester starts.

The Truth

I found out this summer that though I may not be able to find a job that I am fully capable of writing great code and that my skill-set is not as bad as I think they are. Companies have different standards on who they’re looking to hire and maybe I was a great programmer to them or maybe I was just a guy who does design and front-end and didn’t know a thing about back-end. After getting multiple responses from different companies I understand that sometimes things do not work out and that you have to be strong and continue on your ultimate journey.

Moving forward

The only way to advance and overcome the downsides of life is to move forward. Nobody wants to get rejected nor feel that they do not have the right skill-set for a job. My problem was I started out as a designer / front-end developer and that is mainly what my portfolio showcases. I’ve built websites in php, setup a full stack web server, created a full-blown web application but a lot of that is not showcased in my portfolio. You can be the most talented developer in the world, but if no one can see your work or witness your skill-set then why are you applying to jobs. I decided over the summer to write more programs and contribute to open source projects so that I can become a great back-end developer. I want to be the "best" I can be when it comes to programming and never want to stop learning. The only way to be the best is to work hard, collaborate, and communicate with peers so that you can someday become great at what you do. ABL fellow and aspiring coders!

May 11, 2013

The update: May

So it’s been a while since I’ve last posted on here but lets not make excuses. Over the last month or so I’ve been extremely busy with school. If you’ve read my blog before this post you might have noticed that I was not doing so well during my midterm. To sum it all up I decided to drop mathematics(still finished the book), and focus on biology which was a very tough class. During the last week of school I ended up passing my final exam and was ready for my new year at the University of Chicago, which is the school I will be attending in the fall. It’s been a very good year for me since I have accomplished a lot of my goals for 2013. I look forward to the rest of the year in my "new" life in Chicago. Over the next couple of weeks I will be in search of a job so if all goes well I will soon be employed by someone. Until then keep working hard and reaching for the stars.