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Let’s face it: When you sign up for a software engineering immersive bootcamp, you’re making an ambitious decision to learn a significant amount in a short period of time. I commend programs such as Flatiron School, of which I’m proud to be a student, for making computer science and the world of programming accessible to folks who may not have had the means or access to the discipline earlier in life.

As a bootcamp academic, you quickly learn that such an undertaking requires consistency and commitment daily. Whether you’re participating in a lecture, practicing concepts through code reps, planning and…


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During my initial time learning the fundamentals of software engineering, it became readily apparent that programming is powerful. Not only does code of any language have the capacity to create and manipulate intangible worlds borne from the depths of our mind, but also to provide oneself inspiration, satisfaction, and understanding along the way. Conversely, coding for beginners can (and typically does) tend to leave you in a state of frustration, disappointment, and confusion.

Throughout my career, I’ve leaned on the mantras, credos, and quotes of others to help me make sense of certain situations, assuage myself of unnecessary concerns, and…


In my last post, I discussed a concept I dubbed “roundabouting” as a key approach to developing one’s programmer skills when first approaching programming. In short, set your sights on an end objective, ask questions and test those questions through trial and error, and don’t beat yourself up over taking the long route to achieve a solution only to find a shorter route thereafter; just retain the lessons learned along the way and before you know it, you don’t have to look over 15 times when writing a function in vanilla javascript…or you might give up on memorizing

json-server --watch…

In most pursuits, discovering that there was a shorter approach to a task after completing said task usually begets frustration and regret. If I drove all the way from Seattle to Portland to get my favorite order from Dutch Bros., I would be irked if, upon my return, I discovered there was a Dutch Bros. location in Everett, WA; a 6-hour roundtrip across states versus a 90-minute jaunt? I wouldn’t even be able to enjoy my coconut mocha.

With computer programming, however, the roundabout way of accomplishing something doesn’t necessarily elicit this kind of sentiment. Sure, smart programmers SHOULD do…


Understanding string interpolation was one of my first memorable “AHA!” moments while learning the fundamentals of JavaScript. At its core, string interpolation lets us dynamically insert values we’ve defined into the middle of a string…so what does that mean, anyway? Well, I quickly realized this sounded quite familiar to a routine responsibility in previous Marketing and Customer Success roles I’ve had: incorporating attributes within the content of email marketing campaigns!

A quick breakdown of email marketing

Marketers seize every opportunity they have to personalize communications with my customers. Let’s face it, I’m more likely to read an email that starts with “Dear Alex” than “Dear CUSTOMER”…

Alex Calvert

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