“Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant.”
Mitchell Kapor

When I thought I had mastered HTML and CSS decades ago, I thought that this is it. I can now focus on building websites, and enjoy all my hobbies between projects. No more learning anything.
 
Fast forward >> to 2017. Here I am still studying and learning the new web technologies that are constantly coming down the road, and it is not slowing down either.
 
Here is a shortlist of things to learn:

  • Evolution of languages (i.e. CSS to CSS3, ES5 to ES6)
  • Learning new languages (i.e. PHP, JS, Ruby)
  • Pre-Processors (i.e. SASS, LESS)
  • Frameworks (i.e. React, Vue)
  • CMS (i.e. New versions/updates)
  • Databases (i.e. MySQL, MongoDB)
  • APIs (i.e. REST, GoogleMaps)
  • Create SVG (i.e. Illustrator, Sketch)
  • Editing video (i.e. Premiere, Final Cut)
  • Latest SEO (i.e. tips, Google algorithms )
  • Social Media (i.e. using twitter to grow your business)

I am sure you have a bucket list of items you want to learn and it may not even have any technical element, examples:

  • People skills
  • A better listener
  • Business skills, teamwork
  • Reducing stress
  • Keeping physically fit
  • A foreign language

Ok, it has been determined that a designer or developer needs to keep learning just to keep up with the web industry.
If you don’t, you will fall behind and be stuck working with outdated or deprecated technologies.
 
Discouragement
We all have busy lives; family, work, maybe 2nd job, projects with deadlines, school, etc.
So you search the internet, what you find is a overwhelming wealth of information, “like taking a drink from a fire hydrant,” from the opening quote above.
If you are like me, I just shut everything down and say “forget it, who has the time?”
But since then, I have learned to team up with today’s technology, and fit these learning medium’s into a slice of free time each day.
 

Using today’s technology to learn
Good News, with today’s media, you have a way to learn and grow within your means.
This is what I do to keep up with the latest:
 
Podcasts:
There are numerous web development podcasts available.
I download them on my phone, and listen while driving, jogging, working on the yard, just about anywhere when I don’t have a computer.
I have learned and gathered so much info from podcasts.
The downside is when the speaker is referring to code, you cannot see them in action.
 

Videos
I am a visual learner, I have learned and grasped so much from watching videos on Youtube.
Since many videos are short, or broken into parts, all you need is 10 minutes or 20 minutes at a time.

  • Set aside 10 to 30 minutes during the week to watch a video on something related.
  • When working on a project, take a time out and watch a video on something unrelated to what you are currently working on.
  • If you are at Starbucks, or somewhere similiar, you may have accessibility to wi-fi, where you can be viewing a tutorial.

 

Websites
Knowing that free time is a priceless commodity, we can’t be wasting time surfing the web.
If you just want to open one website and scrutinize what are the hottest web development topics, new techniques, or just fresh inspiration, take a look at these sites.

No matter how busy you are, everyone has been given 24 hours.
The successful find ways to manage their time to be fit things into their busy schedules.
Look at your daily and weekly schedule, think of ways to incorporate bits of “learning time” into your schedule. All you need is a few minutes each day.

Keep Coding
 
Gerald Watanabe
 
IslandWebTek

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