First Month at DockYard

By: Marin Abernethy

I came to the programming party a little late in my college career, only having a year and a half of classroom experience under my belt. Due to my limited CS background, I was rather anxious to start work at a web development startup, fearing my qualifications were not up to par. However, my feelings of inadequacy quickly subsided after starting at DockYard! I was welcomed by a comfortable learning environment and an atmosphere of positivity and productivity. My coworkers are very approachable and always willing to answer my questions. Because of DockYard’s intimate size I am able to see all sides of the business, and get to know everyone in the office.

It has now been a month since I began working and already I feel I am light-years ahead of where I started. My nerves have been replaced by an eagerness to continue learning and grow as a developer. The amount of information that has been thrown my way is rather overwhelming. I have already pored through 6 books, including: Agile Web Development with Rails by Sam Ruby and, Secrets of the JavaScript Ninja by John Resig, in addition to other readings on CoffeeScript, version control (git), and user stories. Not to mention my introduction to vim and all the commands that accompany it. While I cannot claim all of the information has stuck, the exposure will surely breed understanding. I have learned that it isn’t about having all the answers, but the efficiency of finding them that is important.

In addition to all the reading, I have worked on a small side project: a simple blog site (my introduction to test-driven development) that I rebuilt 3 times, each time adding more features. The saying, “repetition is the mother of all learning”, has certainly resonated with me after this exercise. Also pair programming with others in the office has also been extremely helpful, giving me an idea of the day-to-day. Overall, I feel lucky to be at DockYard in the midst of the growing field of web development. Already I can say my experience has been invaluable and I thoroughly look forward to the rest of the summer.