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Hack Reactor Week 2 Review

Mulligans, mystified by git, pair programming, and toy problems

Keegan Leary
Keegan Leary

I'm attending the Hack Reactor 12 Week immersive coding bootcamp from 11APR to 8JUL in an effort to develop my programming skills to offer a wider range of services to my clients. The schedule is jam packed with 11 hours of coding content 6 days a week Mon-Sat. I'll be keeping a journal of my experiences with the program here.

The journey continues!

Hack Reactor offers a "mulligan" where at the end of the first week you can opt to remove yourself from the program and defer until a later date. The rigors of pre course should not be understated, the expectation on day 1 is that you are already writing Javascript and can understand fairly complex logic problems. If you googled for answers to the pre course material and didn't fully absorb the content, there may be a chance you need to take advantage of the mulligan. We had 3 people from our pod decide to use it.

To be honest, underbar, our rewrite of the underscore library, still give me trouble, and this is the third time we've done it! However, I can definitely get by and hold my own, so I'm pressing forward. I'm also still a bit mystified by git. I can do basic forks, clones, commits, and pushes, but workflows with separate branches, pull requests, and reversion are still confusing. I'm really glad Hack Reactor expects us to use this tool, but I wish we could have a lecture or demo on its use. I know that understanding git is vital for any developer.

I'm also feeling more confident about the week 1 material already. Really enjoying the immersive style and fast pace of learning.

Pair programming is better than expected. I'm finding that having to explain my code is a powerful way to refine and clarify my logic. It feels a little slow at times but we've managed to work through all the "bare minimum requirements" (BMRs) thus far. Each project has minimum requirements, which we are expected to meet, and advanced topics, which we can explore if we have the time. Usually I'm feeling capitulated by the time BMRs are complete, but sometimes I'll explore the advanced stuff on my own. They even have "nightmare mode" topics for the elites.

We've started working with toy problems, which are essentially prompts similar to leet code. It's a good way to be introduced to computer science topics and honing are skills with basic syntax, datatypes, and logic.

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