Webapplog Apprenticeship

Webapplog Apprenticeship

In August, I posted an idea of a three-month apprenticeship in web development and Node.js:

I only wanted to test the water, and was surprised that I got over 20 requests. Therefore, I went ahead with the interview process in order to select one aspiring Node.js programmer…

Lo and behold, the candidates were so smart and eager that I started having a hard time making a choice. Part of the effective learning comes from collaboration between peers; therefore, I accepted three individuals. They already started working on projects like HackHall, mongoui and Pro Express.js. We have weekly meetings and communicate almost daily via the Slack chat.

All apprentices received my books and were invited to attend in-person trainings like Node Program absolutely free!

The original apprenticeship program description as follows:

I have a unique opportunity for a person who knows a little bit of HTML and CSS, but wants to learn more about JavaScript and Node.js (JavaScript on the server).

You can get weekly coaching, code reviews, and maybe even paired programming sessions from the author of seven books on JavaScript and Node.js.

Why spend four years and boatloads of MONEY, at a college and get a degree which most likely will be 70% obsolete by the time you graduate, when you can learn cutting-edge stuff by doing and working with an expert?

Would someone be interested in programming (web development) apprenticeship with me?

The length of the program is three months.
The commitment is 10–20 hours per week.
Remote/online/weird hours are okay.

Job Security is Dead But There Is a Way

The Best Way to Never Worry About Job Security Again

There is no such thing as a job security. You can trust my word on this, because I worked for one of the most stable employers in the world, the U.S. federal government, during 2007–2008, and had seen a lot of bright software engineers, analysts, technical writers, quality assurance engineers, and project managers let go due to the market downturn and budget cuts. Startups and private corporations are even more brutal. They won’t even give you a two-week notice! I know of a company that fired its lead software engineer with just ONE hour of notice… poor fellow didn’t expect it at all when he was coming to work in the morning just to go back home for the rest of the day right away!

Are you sure your job is secure and that you will be able to continue to provide for your kids? Anything can happen, even if you do a great job and your boss is happy. For example, a competitor might move into a space and disrupt your employer’s revenues. Or someone way up in the company chain-of-command could decide to close your project for political reasons. Sadly, rank and file employees are just pawns. But there’s a way to turn that around!

Oh, and if you’ve read your employment contract carefully, most companies can fire you without stating any reason. It’s called employment at will.

However, there’s a secret trick that you can pull out of your sleeves. Only a select circle of people know and use it… and it’s not working long hours or playing company politics!

I have talked with many employers, and this is one of the ugliest secrets of Silicon Valley: Everyone wants an A player/ninja/guru/superhero! I think there’s a place for all levels of expertise, but sadly, business culture dictates this hire-only-the-best-fire-the-rest trend both to startups and large companies. But you can make it work in your favor. :-)

Here’s “the secret” to never worry about job security again (which is not really a secret because it’s so obvious that we ignore it). The advice I want to give you is to become a thought leader in your niche, because this will make you “a hot commodity” and you will have more employment options than ever before. It might even happen that, in the “unfortunate” event that you’re let go, the new gig will be more lucrative, and offer more perks and free time!

The best way to become an expert and a thought leader is to thoroughly research a topic and then publish a book on it. Since I published my first book, recruiters from Twitter, Google, Facebook, Amazon, and other great companies try to lure me into interviewing with them… and my experience is not an exception! I’m sure that authors like Alex MacCaw, or Reg “Raganwald” Braithwaite have found their dream jobs (Stripe and GitHub respectively)… and no shortage in even better job offers!

The great thing about writing a book is that you don’t have to risk anything! All you need is a few hours of writing per week and in a few months you can have your own book that you can sell, give away at conferences, and prominently feature on your resume!

The way I approached writing and publishing of seven (7!!!) books is disclosed in my latest book ProgWriter [programmer + writer]. It’s the collection of all my secrets and lessons learned on my path from ordinary developer to writer of multiple programming books—that sell (a few became Amazon.com best sellers!). So, don’t wait any longer. Arm yourself with my tips and tricks on publishing and how to write a book to make yours and your family’s future more predictable!

ProgWriter [programmer + writer]: Lessons learned on my path from ordinary developer to writer of multiple programming books—that sell

ProgWriter [programmer + writer]: Lessons learned on my path from ordinary developer to writer of multiple programming books—that sell

Node Program Online Beta is Ready: From 0 to Hero with Node, Mongo and Express

Node Program Online Beta is Ready

My team and I worked hard last week to create Node Program Online. We are still polishing content and putting final touches, but we’re opening the beta version of this online course to a small circle of trusted readers (only 100 “seats”) of this blog! Yes, the Node Program Online Beta is ready and you can enroll now!

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Node Program Online is Coming Soon

Node Program Online

Node Program has been running since the summer of 2014. Next weekend, October 25-26, 2014 we’ll have another class which might be the last in-person course (register here)… because we launching Node Program Online on Udemy. Yes, that’s right! Last time we recorded the training and now the lectures, tests and interactive exercises will be available online!
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NodeFrameworks.com Got GitHub Stats

Now our hand-picked registry of Node.js frameworks (NodeFrameworks.com) has GitHub statistics right on the website, so you don’t have to navigate back and forth when making a decision!

This is how it looks: each framework has a number (GitHub stars) next to its name. This serves as a social proof meaning the more people use the framework the more robust it is and the less bugs it has.

GitHub stats on NodeFrameworks.com

GitHub stats on NodeFrameworks.com

The buttons provided by the service called GitHub Buttons. The links to the frameworks’ GitHub, NPM, examples and other resources are hidden under the “i” icon.

Thank you Randson Oliveira for contributing and making pull requests!

Punishment for Becoming Better

Punishment for Becoming Better

If you do something for a living every day (i.e., you have a job) you have two choices:

  • Learn and become better: this is the default path for most people (it’s hard to do something over and over without getting better at it).
  • Stagnate and regress: this is actually harder than progress, and may require some subconscious proactive self-sabotage.

So everything is better if we automatically make progress, right? Not quite, because when we make progress, other people (including bosses) start to notice, and they then give/bring/order more of the same work—not a new type of work. Usually it’s the same stuff you’ve been doing already (and for the same money), because management doesn’t want to lose a good producer. I call this punishment for becoming better.

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Secret Express.js Settings

Secret Express.js Settings

Express.js is one of the top Node.js frameworks out there. It was used in the overwhelming majority of projects that I’ve encountered since I began working with Node.js in 2011. One of the main selling points and key differentiators is the framework’s configurability. However, while writing Express.js Guide and Pro Express.js, I discovered a few secret settings never mentioned in their documentation.

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The Foundation: Starting from Nothing

The Foundation: Starting from Nothing

Last year, at about this same time, I discovered The Foundation podcast. I was vacationing in Mexico and stumbled on it via Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income—a hyper-popular online infopreneur. I downloaded and listened to many similar podcasts on online business, but The Foundation surprised me in the magnitude of its guests’ success stories. These weren’t the product of a few niche blogs, life coaching and ebooks, but six figures per month (and up) marketing and SaaS companies.

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