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Ask HN: Why do coding bootcamps teach Ruby on Rails and JavaScript?
27 points by Onixelen  2 hours ago   27 comments top 13
rubyn00bie 2 hours ago 1 reply      
JavaScript is a must know if you want to do web work. It's as necessary as HTML. It's the only language browsers actually natively run.

Ruby on Rails is sort of the basis for most any other modern MVC web framework. That is to say it inspired nearly every other web MVC framework, in most other languages. If you can use Rails you'll be able to use most anything else. Prior to Rails most web apps had proprietary frameworks powering them or no framework and were just an bunch of "pages" (endpoints) loosely strung together.

Rails also, for better or worse, has one of the easiest to use ORMs-- ActiveRecord. This helps new folks worry less about the intricacies of learning SQL (or whatever your persistence layer is) and more so about what writing a web service is really about.

Ruby as a language is also very expressive, is truly object oriented, and has all the right building blocks (that's kind of a pun actually), plus a very large amount of documentation and examples. It also is very good for meta programming which is what enables a lot of the rails magic (and fun).

At the end of the day learning more languages like PHP, Python, Java after Ruby is fairly trivial. I always tell noobs to learn whatever is useful for them, and stop worrying about what language.

I started with Ruby 10 years ago and now can write Java, PHP, Python, Scala, Elixir, Objective-C, and Swift; though I am by no means an expert in all of them. At some point you'll realize you've learned concepts and they're what is important. Not syntax.

P.s. don't let my username fool you ;) I'm just unfortunately hipster.

Edit: added some thoughts on why your first language isn't so relevant and a bit of clarity.

Edit 2: fixed absent minded use of rails where I should've written ruby.

jw2k 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
Quite simply, it's great market fit.

JavaScript has extremely low barrier to entry. Everyone has a browser, so you can get someone to get started without download any software. That's huge.

Rails has the benefit of providing a framework that can get someone building functional CRUD apps in a tremendously short period of time.

Between those two, you've hit a nice sweet spot where someone can be fully functional as a developer in a short period of time (talent/quality/patience aside).

bhollan 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Programming concepts come more easily the more gradually they are revealed. Nobody has any concept of what a stack overflow is or why it's important on day 1. Ruby is approachable and fairly forgiving and (at least in MY opinion) VERY readable.

Full disclosure: I went to engineering school for 2 degree and then later attended (and currently work for) a code school.

I can say that I can see a marked difference in students that go through Ruby as a first programming language vs JS. Ruby-first students are more ready to deal with new ways of doing things and they are, in general, less likely to have serious learning issues. JS-first students tend to have more consistent problems grasping things like scope and return values. It IS possible it's bent as such due to our curriculum, but all I can tell you is what I've seen in our students.

aczerepinski 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I think it hardly matters which language you learn first. I went to a Ruby bootcamp but Ruby is #4 or 5 on the list of languages I've used most since then. I didn't use it at all in my first job after the bootcamp.

Those programs are three months out of your life and then you're back to learning on the job and in your free time like everyone else.

I think a dynamic OO language like Ruby or Python is a great place to start but it doesn't really matter. Any mainstream language would be fine.

codingdave 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Look at the goals of a bootcamp in the first place - to get you just enough knowledge to have the minimum skill needed to be useful to a team. They are not trying to make you a computer scientist... they are trying to teach you as little as possible, while still knowing enough to get work done, which means knowing how to work with a toolkit that does most of the work for you. And RoR does that. It also is popular enough that once you know it, you can probably find a team using it that needs help.

And why JS? Because that is what runs in the browsers.

agentultra 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I'd guess Javascript is quite popular[0] because it's literally on every modern computer and has incredible reach[1]. It's also a bit of a kitchen-sink language so students can grow into a style and paradigm that suits them. Plus there's nothing to install to get started... just open a browser.

[0] http://www.tiobe.com/tiobe-index/javascript/[1] https://tessel.io/https://www.sitepoint.com/creating-webgl-game-unity-5-javasc...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sETJs2_jwo

tavrobel 2 hours ago 1 reply      
My guess is that they are the flavor of the month (knowing only Rails+JS is widely employable), and have a low enough barrier to entry that you can realistically teach someone enough to be useful in the timescale of a bootcamp. Add a little HTML/CSS and you can do front end as well.

I think the auto-magicness of Rails helps, since it gives you so much even if you are relatively inexperienced. Then you have a jumping off point, to start learning on the job, earning money and you can ostensibly choose your own adventure from there.

edit: I'm not sure what's objectionable about this comment. I'm new here and trying to be helpful, so if I've gone against some rule, I'd like to know so I can learn from it.

proyb2 34 minutes ago 0 replies      
Both frontend and backend, definitely if you are to be in charge of a project that involve security and quality coding on both side that most developers must be proficient and competent to deliver with "Web application" framework.
newsat13 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
Because they are the (one of the) easiest ways to get things done. Did you have a specific question? This seems to be one of those questions that will bring out the trolls and people will start talking about elixir, rust etc.
slap_shot 2 hours ago 0 replies      
They are ubiquitous and compliment each other in full stack entry level developer roles.
ransom1538 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Most actual work is in "php". But, it isn't 'hip' anymore. So, they teach ruby. Ruby is more difficult and less clear. Rails itself is a land of 'gotchas' (I have 10 years exp in both). After learning ruby/rails it will be difficult to find work and understand basic database constructs.

/end rattling my cane


cookiecaper 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Web is the most accessible medium. If you can view it in your browser, so can anyone else. There is no complex configuration or build process (though it seems the JS community is dead set on changing that). What You See Is What You Get. It's an immediately useful and intelligible medium and you mostly stay away from the really scary things. Teaching simple web dev first makes sense.

Rails is probably chosen mostly out of the false tradition that Ruby is a good beginner's language or the also-false tradition Rails is a good framework.

baybal2 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Ask ten people to write a hello world in js, and they all will do it, and do it the exactly same way - this is great for a production language. On that point, JS is as good as C/Cxx

The downside - ask 10 people for an example of proper use of advanced oop in js, and out of these 10 you will get 5 passible anwers all of which will be drastically different - horrid thing for production

Ask HN: How do I get up to date as a frontend developer in 2017?
30 points by aphextron  8 hours ago   18 comments top 6
dvcc 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I think everyone will need a bit more context around what you do know prior to answering the question. Front-end development has somewhat quieted down from the crazy pace of the past few years -- or maybe I just settled into a stack and have given up, who knows!

But a lot of the major players (e.g, Webpack/React/Angular[!2]/TypeScript/etc) have all been around for more than a year, so context is important.

sergiotapia 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Whatever you do learn ES6. It's the Javascript used today by most startups. Try to learn how to manipulate the DOM without jQuery. Learn React. Learn how to setup a project using Webpack.
binarynate 7 hours ago 1 reply      
My interest was piqued when I first misread the question as How do I get a date as a frontend developer in 2017?
Todd 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I would pick a set of technologies that you want to learn. This will require a bit of research, of course. It's a bit of a personal decision, based on your predilections and your past experience.

There is a ton of activity in the space, of course. I would first glance at the ECMAScript efforts of late (ES6 and ES7 in particular). You'll probably need to use Node.js, since it tends to be the center point of JS development, regardless of the tools and frameworks you choose.

The first piece is your build tool. Grunt and Gulp are the two top build tools. Gulp is more recent and seems to have more uptake. If you haven't written a build script (e.g., gulpfile.js) I recommend building one up from scratch rather than using someone else's. You could use others' for examples of what to do, but build your own from scratch according to your needs, as you go. You'll learn more and understand the whole thing that way.

The next choice is whether to use a transpiler or not. The two biggies are Babel (ES6 transpilation to ES5 or ES3) and TypeScript. You can skip this step at first, but it will be a foundational aspect to your build, so don't wait too long. If you do skip it, loop back once you've made your other choices.

The final big choice is framework. The big ones right now are React and Angular 2. There are many others, of course (Vue, Inferno, ...). You might try a few efforts here to learn about them if you don't have a clear initial default choice.

There are secondary choices depending on which main framework you choose. For example, if you use React, you will likely need a client-side store. Flux used to be the default. Now it's likely to be Redux or, more recently, MobX.

There hasn't been a better time to be a JS dev. There's still a lot of churn, but there's also more stability than there has been in the past few years. You can stick with technology choices for a year or two without major disruption if you make course corrections. Good luck!

PascLeRasc 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm also looking to brush up on front-end; can anyone comment on if Bootstrap is still important?
camus2 7 hours ago 1 reply      
> What are some need to know things in terms of frameworks and workflow that I should be aware of?

Strange times, isn't it? 10 years ago, a front end job would require a comprehensive understanding of CSS, the DOM and JS. Now it's all about framework X and Z, build tool A or B, Typescript and what not, like these tools are so complex one has to be a specialist in these tools because they can't be learn in a few days.

Meanwhile, micro-services are all at rage on the server and back-end developers deemed big frameworks like Rails,Spring,Symfony and co an anti-pattern because complexity is bad (Go)? But stupidly complex tools and frameworks on the client are OK?

Ask HN: What a 2nd tier college student must do to be at par with the best?
80 points by amandavinci  1 day ago   57 comments top 28
whitenoice 22 hours ago 1 reply      
You are doing great! Don't let institution name bother you, it does not matter much, it helps in getting interviews etc, but if you work smartly you will get that anyway. Few things I would focus on:

1. Build a strong CS and Math background, especially since you are interested in AI, ML. Academia is the best place to do this. Look at the curriculum of top engineering schools like mit, cmu for your sophomore year and see how you can complement it with the courses you are taking. This will pay you dividends in future. You are already doing that, which is great! Try to add more structure to your execution.

2. Take advanced courses on the topics you are interested as you get to your senior year. A lot of MOOCs have entry level courses but lack on advanced topics. You will find these scattered across university lecture videos, you already mentioned OCW.

3. For prototype projects try building things from the ground up. For e.g. Taking an Operating systems course great, build a simple filesystem from scratch. It will help you in understanding the complexity involved in production grade software and why certain design choices are made.

4. For the projects that you are passionate about deep dive into it, its great to see people talk about their projects with deep technical insight, pros and cons of design choices made etc.

5. Personally I would avoid learning every new language that comes up, focus more on programming language concepts (there is a course of Coursera on this) and learn few languages well.

6. For internships look for startups that are working on interesting ideas.

7. More than the certificates the projects what you did in those courses are more valuable.

8. Enjoy, make good friends, stay healthy and active.

praneshp 23 hours ago 2 replies      
Possibly unpopular opinion here on HN. I almost went to VIT in 2007 (shockingly got into NIT Trichy instead).

1. Focus on becoming a good programmer (ie, SPOJ/Topcoder/Directi). That'll help you clear interviews, and get good at thinking about algos and data structures. I'd even prioritize this over other CS fundamentals.

2. Keep your GPA up and get into a good grad school. I disliked both the interview process and the classism (ie, recruit from top schools) of Indian companies when I interviewed there.

3. If you don't want to go to grad school, make sure you don't touch TCS/CTS/Wipro/<insert mass VIT employer here> with a 100-foot-long- pole. Given your passion, and assuming you use the next two years to become a strong programmer, you will find a good place to work in Bangalore. You might have to pay your dues, but please don't pay them at the above mentioned places.

And people who look at you as second class undergrads can fuck off (esp the professors at IIT Madras :) ). I know several friends at IITs that preferred to pot-smoke-away their time there. If you're near Chennai I'm happy to chat with you.

segmondy 12 hours ago 0 replies      
You are aiming too low. Why do you want to be on par with the best? Why not exceed them? My advice to you is to learn more than computing. We tend to obsess over languages, frameworks, algorithms & tooling.

Learn "software engineering", this has nothing to do with language, framework, algorithm or tooling. This is about code organization, managing complexity in code, deciding how to structure/architect an application. This is where you are going to read what some will consider "boring" books, these books will hold very strong opinions and are not exact science. You will have to take that knowledge, apply your experience and come up with your own reasonable opinions too. Here are sample of such books in my library, "Business Process Management", "Ship It", "Architecture Principles", "domain driven design", "Enterprise integration pattern", "Clean code".

The real world doesn't care what language, framework, algorithm or tool you use. They just care that you solved the problem. This means you must understand some other domains outside of tech. If your domain is only tech then you will be building tools for programmers/IT folks. If you understanding banking, insurance, health care, automotive, shipping, etc, you could apply your knowledge towards the difficult or poorly solved problems in those areas.

If you become well rounded, you will have the skills to implement, the domain knowledge to solve pressing problems, but more importantly the wisdom to know when to and when not to break rules.

liquidise 23 hours ago 2 replies      
You have already mentioned the top one for me: passion.

Colleges rarely teach you what you need to know professionally - they can't, tech moves too fast. Instead, they teach you how to learn what you need to know. This is an important distinction because it should inform your approach to your professional growth.

1. Stay passionate both about software and your own growth/education in it.

2. Start some personal projects and, important, work on them until they reach a place where you can talk about what you learned, the techs you used and be able to at least show a page or two of it working.

3. Be forthcoming in interviews about your desire to create. The longer i am in software the more importance i put on hiring creative people.

Finally, think of software development as modern day blacksmithing. Those who do well have a few things in common: passion, persistence and a great set of artisans (mentors) to learn under. Prioritize finding some people who have compelling opinions on software development and work with them. It will change how you build software and the value you will bring to teams in the future.

captn3m0 20 hours ago 1 reply      
Few tips:

1. Apply to startups. If you are looking to apply to the big four, make sure you do your diligence and work hard at coding contests.2. Practice peer-teaching. VIT is a huge college. There are more people like you, and you can easily help each other by doing projects together.3. The industry, in general, rewards freshers who have worked in large teams and projects before. 4. Make sure you get a good internship. Shouldn't be hard for you, but if you are interested, drop me a mail (Razorpay, Bangalore)5. Go for depth first and then pick your specialization within software. For me it was Web Development and Software Security. Could be anything for you, but make sure you have tested the waters in other fields before picking one. The one benefit of College Life is that you have time to experiment and fail. You can try out projects in all these different fields, and then decide what you are really passionate about.6. GSoC is a great option. I'd recommend trying for a experienced org over a new one. 7. Avoid freelancing, unless absolutely necessary. It rewards short term gains, over long time learning. You can make much more money cloning WordPress themes and reusing them across projects then learning a new programming language. The latter would help you much more.

I'm very interested in Software Education in India, and if would like to talk more, drop me a mail (email in profile).

nickbauman 23 hours ago 0 replies      
Code that solves a real problem or runs a real (viable) business is more important than any degree certificate you will ever get. 93% top most successful corporations in America are managed by people who come from 2nd and 3rd tier grads. Steve Jobs was a college dropout.
ageis 22 hours ago 0 replies      
Having come from a similar background, I can offer you these suggestions -

1. The level of programming taught in Indian universities is not enough. Writing a sort program is quite different from writing good, maintainable OOP code. Apart from working in a good company, one way to develop this skill (which I feel is critical) is to look and contribute to good open source projects - elasticsearch, spark, etc. Unfortunately I don't know of any good books which teach this overall, apart from specific aspects like Effective Java.

2. Another aspect that I feel is missing in Indian universities is challenging assignments. I would have liked to write my own toy OS to learn systems, or toy kafka to learn distributed systems. The more core computer science fundamentals you master now (preferably through writing code along with learning theory), the better an engineer you will be later.

3. Another aspect that is lacking is the way to reason through things. Indian universities have a third-person approach on the lines of "the experts do things this way so we will just do it this way", on the contrary in a US university the reasoning is more on the lines of "we use to do X, that had Y limitations. So we moved on to Z, now your assignment is to design an extension to Z (say Z+) which solves YY limitation". Unfortunately, I don't know what can be done to improve the way we reason about things.

4. Don't forget to explore different areas. I started with computer graphics, moved on to compilers, then app development, then data engineering, then infrastructure development, then back to data engineering.

onion2k 22 hours ago 1 reply      
Everyone in our country, from academia to industry, looks at us as second class undergrads

Go and work somewhere where your university's reputation is unknown, then people will rate you on your work rather than the university you went to.

bernardino 22 hours ago 1 reply      
I am glad to see a question asked from college student. I am always interested to hear from others in college. I am twenty-one-years-old, attending a community college in the states and studying a bit of computer science.

I am going to go off on sort of a tangent and offer you some general advice:

1. Do not worry about what other people think. You mentioned in the beginning of your question about being looked as "second class undergrads", and that is completely false. As Rainer Maria Rilke once noted: "Your life is so inexpressibly your own..."

2. Build things you are passionate about, and not because they'll help you land a job but just for the sake of building things. If you are interested in artificial intelligence or machine learning, learn about them and build something. Better yet, keep a blog and write about the process of learning about AI, ML, etc. Don't be afraid to email some people you look up in the industry for guidance.

3. Keep learning, learn about anything that sparks your interest. Nothing is boring in its deepest essence. There's always something to learn. And if you know a lot, teach it or write about i.e. set up a repository for other people to learn more about it in an easier way.

Above all: Just be you. Don't label or attach yourself with certain identities. Build great things just for the enjoyment of building things. Love the process of building things. Collaborate with friends and colleagues. Go boldly.

Learning, building, etc. is all a joy. Don't try to be the best _____, just build stuff that matters to you.

shubhamjain 21 hours ago 0 replies      
Having completed graduation in India with a college much less in glamor than VIT, I would advice you to give yourself some slack and continue working earnestly on interesting stuff. When I graduated, I was deep-down with anxiety to get proficient in frameworks like Rails / AngularJs. Apparently, what were web frameworks in my time are AI / Big Data these days the skills insinuated as requisite to be taken seriously.

But things are much simpler than that. Programmers solve problems and even the most revered programmers are just solving other programmers' problems. If you are building stuff, irrespective of size, scale or complexity, you're on the right track. Snub the anxiousness of not studying in the top-tier college; it won't matter few years down the line. I certainly can relate to zealousness of solving complex problems, but in my view, it's certainly not a prerequisite for personal fulfilment, or success, for that matter.

In day-to-day work, I am yet to use anything related to AI but every now and then, I find immensely time-saving project that just solved an insignificant problem.

gh1 20 hours ago 1 reply      
I checked out the game you developed...looks awesome.

Look - since you are passionate about solving problems and making things, why don't you just create sources of passive income or build some business from the ground up? This way you will be able to bypass any reputation issues that your university has and focus on your creativity instead.

ravirajx7 14 hours ago 0 replies      
You're doing great. Don't stop your learning curve fall down. I feel that there are really very very less people like us in our country who have similar likes and views though they share almost same story like ours.I can understand the situation of student like me. I too am sophomore student at an Institute ranking way below yours but i feel it doesn't matter a lot specially in our field. I read so many things over internet like how i can develop myself up and so and so though i start everything i don't do anything good which i can show or prove to the world Trust me bro you can't match my level of procrastination. I haven't done anything except reading things over internet and i don't know why the heck i came here to suggest or advice you. But one thing i would like to tell you: don't let yourself feel down and fuck the negativities around you instead try utilizing and learning as much as you can in forthcoming years. There are hell lot of people who are there to help us out and internet is our best friend. I'm studying really hard to learn things around me and i feel you should do the same and make each second count for your better future. Good luck.
akarambir 21 hours ago 0 replies      

You are already on right track. Just complete the Graduation as it is required by many companies(and visas if you need any in future). Go for fundamental courses more on MIT OCW and others. I also studied in a private engineering college from India(2010-2014). My rant at the time here: https://nainomics.blogspot.in/2011/11/welcome-to-indias-high...

I just focused on my learning. Some professors were encouraging. That helped.

One anecdote: I made a heroku style PaaS for my final year project(like dokku). My professors couldn't understand what it does and why is it even necessary. Their main point was we have "shared-hosting" services to do these(I had to go from php to java/python example then :P). Now after two years they have their industry peers saying docker all over and have called me several times regarding that.

I am now Backend Dev building APIs with Python(Django) and Elixir at a small company. I also have small Open source contributions under my belt. Contact me if you need someone to talk to

tallanvor 20 hours ago 1 reply      
I can't really speak for anyone else, but speaking as someone who has been involved in interviewing and making hiring decisions, I don't care what school you went to. I care that you graduated, and I care to a slightly lesser extent what your degree is and what your GPA was.

What I really care about when I interview you is how you answer my questions (this doesn't mean that I expect you to be able to answer every question fully), how well I can gauge the depth of your knowledge, and whether or not I think you will listen to senior engineers, learn what you need to do quickly and with an appropriate level of mentorship, and be a team member rather than someone trying to do his/her own thing.

Ok, I'll admit that someone who went to a for-profit school is going to have a higher bar to pass, but I haven't had to worry about that yet.

eachro 23 hours ago 0 replies      
Focus on learning and self improvement. Everything else will naturally fall into place.
glangdale 23 hours ago 1 reply      
Do you want to be a game developer or an AI expert? I would suspect that the things you should do are going to be quite different.

Also, what do you mean by "at par"? Status? Money? Knowledge? Expertise in a given area, and if so, what?

RangerScience 22 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been watching a friend follow their passion (food); what they do, and what I do/think in response. At this point - anything and everything to do with food, my first thought it - What's Veronica's opinion on this?

You want the people you know (and who know you) to have their idea of you intertwined with what you want to be doing; now, everything they encounter that has to do with that will get funneled your way.

tps5 23 hours ago 0 replies      
No one you want to work for is going to look down on you based on where you went to school.

I hesitate to give you advice since it sounds to me like you're pretty busy already.

kc10 20 hours ago 0 replies      
No one really cares where you graduated from. I have worked with developers from IITs, BITS and much smaller colleges. Some of them are smart, some of them are mediocre and some are bad, irrespective of the college they are from.

All that matters is your passion and how much you put into the work you do.

greenmoon55 23 hours ago 1 reply      
First, you need to think about what you want to do after graduation, such as becoming an Android game developer or a graduate student focusing on AI. Then figure out what you need to do to achieve your goals (such as work on projects or do research) and keep working on it. Everything will be fine and you can be at par with the best.
sch00lb0y 16 hours ago 0 replies      
keep on learning new stuff. make use of time. vit university has a good startup culture so try to find a startup and work on it. here is the some of the vit open source project where you can contribute 1)https://github.com/karthikb351/CaptchaParser2)https://github.com/princebansal/MyVIT3)https://github.com/shubhodeep9/go-MyVIT4)https://github.com/aneesh-neelam/VITacademics5)https://github.com/sch00lb0y/Vit-Photo
asafira 1 day ago 1 reply      
At the risk of sounding cliche', just do work at something you enjoy. If you think there will be valuable knowledge in the degree certificates, go for them. If you have a cool idea you want to explore, go for it.
grigjd3 22 hours ago 0 replies      
Don't let yourself be entrenched in the things you already know. Take on tasks well outside of your comfort zone and peel away at those problems so you are always getting better.
cvigoe 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I think I am in quite a similar position to you: after secondary school here in Ireland, I didn't consider any universities outside of my home town (pretty much because I didn't know a single person who was considering bigger and better options, so it genuinely didn't cross my mind to apply to Stanford, CMU, MIT etc.) so I ended up going to a fairly average and not very well known university to study electronic engineering for my undergrad.

I went on an exchange for a year to UCLA and this was when I started to feel something similar to the sentiment you're expressing here.

I'm now in my 3rd year of undergrad EE and for the last year I've been trying to fast track myself into the AI / ML field as I've been increasingly regretting my EE major and becoming more and more interested and passionate about ML (particularly the intersection of ML, altruism and design): I got Norvig & Russell's textbook and read it in outside of my engineering classes, read less technical books like Nick Bostrom's Superintelligence for motivation / food for thought, made a simple collaborative filtering recommender system using the movielens open source dataset, moved away from the web dev stuff I'd been doing in 1st and 2nd year and tried to hone in on improving my algorithm and pure CS skills, watched a load of AI / ML videos to try and get a better sense of who's who, where's where and what's going on etc. in the field. The "dream" (I use that word loosely) is to do the google brain residency program instead of a PhD, or the U Chicago data science for social good fellowship, so I've been trying to figure out how to get myself into good shape for either of them.

It's been overwhelming at times, largely because I feel like 1) I'm not in the "right" major, 2) I've had a taste of but no longer "go to" UCLA (or an equivalent high ranking university) and won't be graduating from there so will need to work hard to stand out against the competition for placements / fellowships / internships 3) I don't have mentors or peers who can help me navigate the field (I have a great relationship with a lot of my engineering professors but again, it's not ML). So I'm sort of trying to make sense of it all myself. It's reassuring to hear there are others feeling similarly and it's great to hear all that you're doing!

On a positive note, I suspect you may be overestimating the educational superiority of the top tier schools (I know I certainly did before I went to UCLA) but at the same time I don't think it's fair to completely disregard the big unis and just say "circuit theory is circuit theory" and forget about it. While I was there, I really didn't notice all that much of a difference in terms of course content or even teaching quality - the biggest difference was there were an awful lot more high achiever students in my EE classes compared to in my home uni in Ireland, and there was a much more impressive "career fair" and internship opportunity scene than at home (think Irish Cement vs Hyperloop One).

You seem to be doing everything right. I think I was edging down a "burnout" path a couple of months ago with fretting over what you're saying and over my own EE vs CS major "challenge". I've tried to take a step back and remember that there's no one enforcing a particular pace or path for me, hopefully you won't let the fretting get in the way of your passion which almost happened to me.

Just wanted to comment this to warn you about the burnout thing, reassure you somewhat about top schools and throw in a few links you might find interesting for good measure!

You mightn't find any of these links below helpful, you very well may be much more well read than myself but I thought I'd link these here anyway. The first is a reassuring AMA on reddit from the google brain team (particularly the comments where the team talk about all the different backgrounds everyone has at google brain). The second is a list of programmes, fellowships, resources and random AI / ML related pages I've encountered in the last year (amongst a lot of other stuff ). The third is a playlist I made for a friend on interesting AI / ML videos which you most likely will have seen before but you might just enjoy anyway. The quick interviews are cool if you haven't seen them already.

Anyway - best of luck!




AnimalMuppet 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm in the US; if you're going to stay in India, my advice may be less helpful.

But I would say that you're in an environment where everyone cares greatly about credentials, because that's all anyone has so far. Once you graduate and have worked for a few years, people don't care so much about the credential. It may matter some, but it matters more that you can actually do things.

So you need to get a credential that is good enough to get you a job. But it matters more that you actually know what you're talking about, rather than just being able to repeat what the professor said. You need to understand, not just memorize. You need to be able to write software that actually helps people do things, not just classroom exercises. If you can, then you will surpass many who have better credentials than you. It may take a few years, but you will pass them.

seesomesense 23 hours ago 1 reply      
If you are at Vellore (VIT appears to be Vellore Institute of Technology ), there is a world class medical institution in your town (CMC Vellore )that sends many of their graduates around the world to places like the Mayo Clinic and MGH.

They have a well regarded neurophysiology lab that was run by Marcus Devanandan. Perhaps you could do research / collaborate with them.

Ologn 20 hours ago 0 replies      
I spent years working in IT before going back to school at night to get a CS degree.

One thing is to just learn the subjects and get as good a grade as possible. Even if a class is subpar, just learn the subject. I had to submit an assignment once about process scheduling in Linux etc. After ten minutes study, I knew I had an A+ on the assignment already. But I had always wanted to look into that topic any how, so I spent several more hours reading about it for myself. I always wanted to learn about scheduling, and if I punted on it then, when would I ever study it? If I did that all the time my skill level would be high.

If you study and get good grades and have a good relationship with professors (go to office hours and schmooze a little, pay attention and participate in class and be prepared and listen), you can always apply for a Masters at IIT or elsewhere. So you can still get that name if you want it.

If the subject is theory of computation and the teacher is sub-par, just go above and beyond. Learn about big-O and the squeeze theorem and pushdown automata for the class, but for yourself as well. Read (some of, all of) a non-assigned book on automata theory if necessary.

Insofar as projects, one thing I suggest is doing projects related to coursework. Toward the end, or right after a class on C++ - write your own C++ program, or fix an issue with a Github hosted C++ program and send a pull request. If it is a graphics class on OpenGL, write your own program in OpenGL towards the end or right after the class - maybe explore iOS/Android OpenGL ES. Or look at scikit-learn after an AI class. Ground some of the theory you learn in class with application.

Your classes covering concurrency and threading and critical sections and mutual exclusion may seem boring in school, but if you're a programmer you will run into these things and you will be happy you learned how to deal with it properly a few years back, even if you haveto go back and read up on it. The AI stuff may sound exciting, but getting all these details right together is what will get you to be a good programmer.

From what you wrote, my main advice is don't be too all over the place. If you have a class in databases and a class in Java, that semester, spend a lot of time learning about the theory, and maybe a little time in application setting up MySQL on your desktop and writing a Java program to populate kt. It's OK to have one other side project going at a time of something that interests you, but you should be spending a lot of time learning about databases and Java.

If you have time on your hands, just dive more into it. For example, in the USA, a drink may be 2.5 liters. In some countries that is 2,5 liters (comma, not period). I once submitted a patch to a Java project doing a switch/case by country. The upstream told me the Java had a DecimalFormat class that already did that. My method was a waste of time, and also less complete. It was something about Java I nad not learned. You're just scratching the surface in class, there's a lot of ground to these subjects.

So get a good grasp of each subject you study. Meanwhile, if you have an interest or specialty you'd like to pursue, do that as well.

rhizome 23 hours ago 0 replies      
There is no "best," but you mention AI in two of your three questions, which I think answers the third.
Ask HN: Have you launched your project this year? How are things so far?
5 points by jjoe  8 hours ago   2 comments top 2
jetti 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I launched my OSS project Plsm (formerly Plasm)[0] and have 27 stars and 14 hex downloads. It is the most successful (in terms of stars and usage) project I've worked on. Show HN helped that as well as /r/elixir


ezekg 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This week I launched a closed beta of https://keygen.sh, a SaaS product I've been building for ~8 months. Looking to gather feedback and launch the full product next month.
Ask HN: What online CS degrees would you recommend?
20 points by amorphid  1 day ago   9 comments top 6
huehehue 11 hours ago 1 reply      
You mention you're self taught -- do you have an undergraduate degree?

The OMSCS FAQ[1] is vague about whether such a degree is required:

> "significant professional or other work experience with supporting recommendations may qualify as an adequate substitute for the appropriate academic credentials, however work experience will not take the place of an undergraduate degree."

gigatexal 1 day ago 1 reply      
I couldn't afford this one but it's one of the strongest universities in Oregon for such a thing: take a look at the online CS degrees offered from Oregon State University (http://ecampus.oregonstate.edu/online-degrees/undergraduate/...). They also operate osuosl -- a popular mirror for linux and oss projects:http://osuosl.org
mlwarren 23 hours ago 0 replies      
NCSU has something similar to the OMSCS. I took a few courses and had a positive experience: https://engineeringonline.ncsu.edu/grad_degrees.html

For those that need some background in Computer Science (say you have a B.S. in something else but want to learn Comp Sci fundamentals) there's also the programming certificate course: https://engineeringonline.ncsu.edu/PS/CPC.html

NonEUCitizen 1 day ago 1 reply      
UIUC has this:


RUG3Y 1 day ago 0 replies      
Oregon State has a post bacc program that I've heard good things about, I'm considering that myself.
urahara 16 hours ago 0 replies      
What about nanodegrees from Udacity, does anyone have experience?
Ask HN: How do you develop a userbase for your side projects?
55 points by rfitz  2 days ago   29 comments top 13
oldmancoyote 3 minutes ago 0 replies      
I've launched multiple side projects since the early 1970s. Nothing in the way of marketing has worked for me, but I think I have finally found an approach that works.

I know it's counter-intuitive, but, trying to find customers is actually a mistake! It's too much work for too little return.

The right approach is to devise a method to find someone who will find customers for you. This might be deeper than it first appears. Consider this example.

My current budding project (call it E) is a tool for students who are having academic problems. Before, I would have tried to convince students that E would help them. Instead, my current approach is to find people whose problem is not to improve their own academic work but to improve the work of others. My value proposition is directed at them not at students. It is their problem I am trying to solve. E solves their problem by giving them something they can offer to students needing help.

Now my effort is to approach academic advisors, tutors, remedial educators, learning disability psychologists, and the like via professional associations and activities. In a sense, these people have become my market NOT the students. They will work for years for free and share their success stories to fellow workers. This sustained compounding effort is the sort that can lead to exponential growth.

Devising a method to find such people can be difficult. Deep thought is needed.

Who really are your customers?

djmill 1 day ago 2 replies      

As an experiment I posted my side project in subreddits related to what the project's about. I went from ~15 registered users to 45 registered users in a couple of days. Google Analytics showed ~300 new users in 1 day and ~3000k page views within a couple of days.

Just by posting there and using Google Analytics for the most basic metrics, it boosted my site's ranking in google searches which helped. The numbers I got back are tiny, but it's fun to see new users still signing up and adding data to my project.

soneca 1 day ago 1 reply      
There are a lot of advice out there for this, only that it is always for full-time endeavors, ambitious startups with a team of co-founders and even hire marketers.

These advice can give insights but are rarely directly appliable to side-projects. What you want is a constant, predictable source of people genuinely interested in your project, rather than growth hacking your way to the exponential explosion.

The best way to do it for a side-project is to have access to and trust from an audience.

There are two ways to do it. Write a blog and be part of an online community where your target audience hang out. That is why the advice of having experience at the industry you are focusing is even more a sine qua non than with startups.

Both actions are actually very complementary. Regularly write interesting posts on your blog and create an audience with time. Regularly contribute at HN or subreddits or Twitter or whatever and gain trust.

In both strategies be sure to be useful and deliver value not necessarily related to your side-project. If people sense you are only doing that artificially as pure content marketing, you will lose their trust.And for one-man side-projects, this kind of trust it is even more important than to startups.

garysieling 1 day ago 1 reply      
I've been building https://www.findlectures.com, and have ~400 people on an email list and a few hundred people a day use the site, primarily from having articles written about the project on TNW / Lifehacker.

Some observations:

* I work directly with a couple end users who really like the project, which gives much better feedback than posting on reddit, etc

* Build features that help more technical users (in my case, facets for programming languages)- people who come from HN / twitter give better feedback, write better tickets, and are more able to tell others if they like the app

* As far as promotion, I've had success with HN comments, guest posts on dev.to, and the startups reddit. All three have exposed the app to people with much larger audiences.

* The email lists Cooper Press manages are good to write for, because they pick up a lot of their content from niche subreddits.

* People who write articles about you rely heavily on material you've posted about yourself / your project (either on your own site, or in comments here).

* Some Simple UI features communicate what your project does better than verbal explanations (e.g. for a search engine, help text that shows example searches for different features)

* Any articles you write you can re-purpose in emails you send out, or vice-versa, so the time you spent doesn't get wasted if one approach doesn't work

* There is a compelling psychological benefit to posting a project on reddit (etc) in comments - every time I do, I think of some minor way I could improve the project. This is a bit like code reviews, where the pressure of showing someone your work makes you do a better job.

* Broadening the scope of what you can do gives you a lot more to talk about publicly. E.g. you might not be an expert in AI, but if you do a couple experiments on a dataset you have, you can participate in all those forum threads.

See also: https://www.findlectures.com/articles/2016/12/19/FindLecture...

panorama 1 day ago 1 reply      
In my experience, it's really, really tough. To get our first customers we had to send thousands of emails, talk on the phone with dozens of prospective customers (for both customer development and actual selling). There's a reason why SDRs/Lead Gen marketers are full-time positions and it's ambitious to try and replicate a legitimate sales funnel without being able to dedicate time to it.

This isn't something I would have been able to do if I were still employed, which I assume is your situation since you refer to it as "something on the side." For instance, even getting on the phone with people can be tough, since the hours they're more likely to chat with you are the hours you're at work.

I know this isn't something you want to hear. The good news is that I'm sure it depends on the industry - we had zero connections and background in our industry when we started - and I'm sure our experience doesn't reflect _all_ companies. But I admittedly underestimated how much time/effort needed to go into selling a b2b product when I was a comfortably employed developer.

Edit: re-reading your post, I think you might be describing a consumer-facing product. In which case user acquisition is different, but I would say the challenges are the same (having built many consumer-facing side projects in the past).

philippz 1 day ago 1 reply      
Just should actually do community building from the first second on. The easiest way is to share your idea and getting feedback on it. We developed a product for this. It is called STOMT. For example the game "Empires of the Undergrowth" (not on the market yet) intensively uses STOMT to collect feedback in form of short wishes (you can label them as a page owner). We also have integrations for a lot of platforms so people don't have to leave your product: https://www.stomt.com/empires-of-the-undergrowth

Also works well for ourselves: https://www.stomt.com/stomt

You can think of STOMT as consumer-friendly GitHub Issues.

MrPolymatth 1 day ago 1 reply      
I have side project where we charge 60/month to our customers (mostly small businesses but also individuals).

What we did to build a userbase is to pay a small fee (1,5) to freelancers of our trust who would find possible clients (not random but selected people) and write a personalised message for them that we would send. Whenever someone becomes a client, they get extra money (7).

If you run the numbers, it's just a matter of probability the fact that we make more money from paying them to find people (and knowing that a lot will fail) than from staying with our userbase without growing.

So far, it's been a good method.

pryelluw 1 day ago 1 reply      
Its hard to provide actionable advice without knowing more about you. However, in general terms, you focus on developing and audience through a marketing plan that has a clear content strategy.

Your marketing plan might simply be:

Produce content in various formats for $market. Put call to action on content to urge $market to buy/subscribe/whatever. Then post the content in $community.

The content strategy might be something like:

I will focus on $subject. Will produce blog posts, vlogs, podcasts, whatever. The main subject revolves around it. I will do this three times a week for twelve weeks and measure which content got the most attention.

Its hard to say $advice will work for you because there are many variables. Feel free to ping me (email on profile) if you have more questions.

tmaly 1 day ago 1 reply      
try doing customer development to figure out if your on the right path. There is a short book Running Lean that has a great script template you can start with.

another great book Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth co-authored by the founder of Duck Duck Go gives some really great advice on exploring channels through experiments in parallel to your development effort.

You could also try something like betalist to get some initial users.

NumberCruncher 1 day ago 1 reply      
Meet people having the pain point your side project solves in person and tell them about your solution. Have you ever tried attending meetups?
webmaven 1 day ago 0 replies      
I suggest a title change from "How do you develop a userbase for your side projects?" to something like "How have you developed a userbase for your side projects?" or "How did you develop the userbase for your side projects?".
npankaj 1 day ago 0 replies      
Much depends on what platform you are on. If you are an app - you need a marketing boost - can be done in multiple ways i.e. paid marketing, blog coverage, event launches, etc.
siquick 1 day ago 0 replies      
There's a thousand different answers to this.

A simple answer is to keep doing what you did to get your initial users, until that thing doesn't work anymore.

Ask HN: Laid off today for the first time, anything to be wary of? Advice?
107 points by layoffthrowaway  22 hours ago   89 comments top 32
greenspot 19 hours ago 6 replies      
1. You must reframe the situation as quick as possible. Don't think, 'shit, why me, what happened, am I not good enough?' Such thoughts bring you a vicious cycle. You must treat this situation as the best thing ever happened, you must be happy about it. And I promise you, heck I bet $10,000 that you'll tell us in one year that this lay-off was the best thing ever happened and led you to x, y and z. So, basically it's not reframing or lying to yourselfno, what happened was really the BEST what could have happened (so, I just did the reframing for you). Change is always good and rarely gets triggered by oneself.

2. Reach out to as many people as possible, preferably people outside the company. Most people from the company won't help you and even if they did, they just remind you of the company again, what happened and this brings you again to a bad state and you need to start at zero and reframe again. Just let them go, all of them, really. So, look for prior peers, old friends. Further, write applications or just plain emails to many CEOs and tell them that you are out. You don't have to write that you look for a job. Just get into conversations with as many people as possible. It's more about staying connected and keeping a social context (after you lost the one of the company) than finding the next job.

3. Work on a pet project with a technology you always wanted to work with, get into flow and put it online. This will be the most fun and will give you tons of self-confidence in a very short time.

You should spend 30% of your day on 2 and 70% on 3 and 0% on thinking about the past.

Sounds good?

snarfy 15 hours ago 3 replies      
Since you were laid off and didn't quit or were fired, you should head down to the unemployment office so you can start collecting. You don't know how long it will be before you find a new job, and the bills will keep coming in. You may have savings, but there is no need to blow through it when you've been paying into the safety net.
jzwinck 19 hours ago 3 replies      
If you are not hard up for money you should immediately look for a nice trip somewhere. Be flexible with location instead of time to get a good price. Take three weeks off. Nice places this time of year might be Cuba, Thailand, Costa Rica, Florida, or Big Sky.

Polish your resume on the plane.

tyingq 15 hours ago 2 replies      
>if there's anything I should be wary of

Don't cave to the temptation of making an ass of yourself. You never know when you might run into someone in a future job.

They'll likely make you sign some papers for the 1 month severance. Pay attention. Sometimes there are unsavory clauses, like non-competes, non-disclosure, etc. It would be helpful to know where you are located. If you're in California, for example, you can sign a non-compete without reservation, as they are largely unenforceable.

>any advice from people

Was it a really large layoff? Sometimes, there's opportunity there. Often, some of the key people already smell blood in the water, and are thinking of either jumping ship to a competitor, or even starting up their own competitor. If you know any of the key folks that might b e planning this sort of thing, invite them out to lunch a week or two after the layoff and probe around a bit...you might find a place to land.

vesak 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Do something with your free time. Shut down Netflix, HBO, Reddit, Hacker News and all such distractions. It doesn't have to be profitable or even remotedly useful, just as long it's something that you know that you should be doing.

Examples: create things (write, program, compose); exercise; meditate; start learning something.

Sleep 8 hours every day. Or whatever is your optimum. But no more and no less.

https://www.amazon.com/War-Art-Through-Creative-Battles/dp/1... -- this book might resonate especially well now.

youdontknowtho 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Your friends will want to take you drinking. Be careful.

Be sure to get lots of exercise and sunlight. I'm serious you have be very careful about slipping into depression.

byoung2 22 hours ago 2 replies      
I had a similar situation back in 2009. I gave my resignation to my boss on a Friday and he said I should hold off until Monday. Monday came around and they laid off most the the dev staff. Instead of having to work for 2 more weeks I got 6 weeks severance and got to leave that day. I already had a job lined up to start 2 weeks later so I booked a week in Cancun in the interim.

They make you sign a paper that says you resigned, so you can't claim unemployment, but the severance sounds better than unemployment since you were leaving anyway. Negotiate that severance, too...they offered me 4 weeks at first but I asked for 2 more and got it.

lucozade 16 hours ago 2 replies      
As your being made redundant, there's nothing untoward about their reason.

1 month for each year served is fairly normal so again, nothing untoward.

Signing a release is also fairly standard. Under these circumstances I would always recommend showing the release to an employment lawyer. For me, peace of mind is worth a couple of hundred dollars but YMMV.

Also, in the UK at least, there are tax breaks on some of the redundancy package so it's worth looking into.

Otherwise, what you do next depends a lot on what your financial situation is. I was made redundant a number of years ago and it worked out great. I was married and had a child at the time but we had enough money for me not to work for a few months. I had a bit of a break, in hindsight I was quite burned out, then got a job at a startup, refreshed and raring to go.

Obviously, it's not always a positive experience but it's not always negative either.

Good luck. Hope things work out.

scarface74 15 hours ago 0 replies      
In 2011, I was "laid off" from my job along with almost everyone else when the scraps of my company was acquired. It wasn't a surprise to anyone that this day was coming, management was completely open with us about the dire situation of the company and most of us stuck around until the bitter end hoping that our options might be worth something (they weren't) or that we would get a severance.

From looking at people's LinkedIn profile, everyone from developers, to managers, to the L1, and L2 tech support staff had better jobs within a month. Once recruiters got a whiff of the company being in trouble, they started contacting people. Don't ignore recruiters. I have 15 recruiting contacts from different companies in my contact list.

I put "laid off" in quotes above because immediately after I was laid off, I did contracting work for one of my company's clients (based on a written agreement they had with the acquiring company). After that contract was over, I spent a day contacting every recruiting company I knew. Three days later, I had a phone screen with a Fortune 10 company, one day after that I had an in person interview. By that evening I had an offer letter. At the time, I was a an experienced developer but a middling .Net developer trying to get into full stack development.

Moral of the story, aggressively reach out to people, recruiters aren't evil, study up on interview prep, and don't be afraid to take chances on going after jobs that you might feel that you are not 100% qualified for. I've conducted about a dozen interviews over the past four years. I don't care if you meet all of the bullet points. I care if you are "smart and gets stuff done." And if you are an aggressive learner.

Kushan 19 hours ago 2 replies      
Looking for a job is a full time job in itself. Start looking immediately, get up early as if you were going to work and keep looking until it's time to "go home".

The release you've signed is pretty normal, nothing to really worry about (Unless they've done anything illegal, in which case you're not obliged to adhere to the release but I don't think that's the case).

Just get back on the horse. This happens to the best of us.

arethuza 18 hours ago 1 reply      
If you are in the UK you may qualify for legal advice where you get a lawyer and your employer has to pay for it.

A couple of years back I resigned from a job in the UK and although I was on good terms with the people I worked with the HR department (inevitably) did their best to try and screw me and having a good lawyer on my side made the process fairly painless as they actually did the negotiation with my former employer and I got 3 months salary and various other benefits.

tbendixson 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Hey hey. I was in the same boat last year. Loved the company but there just weren't enough contracts coming through the door to keep me fully employed.

One thing that really helps to keep me sane during tough times is to catalog every teeny tiny expense I've made over the past year. When you know exactly where your money is going, it will help alleviate lots of stress.

Before I did this, I felt a vague sense of panic. After I did it, I realized that I had already earned two times more than what I typically spend in a year. It gave me a sense of calm, knowing that I had plenty of "runway" before having to dip into my investments.

If you have any egregious expenses (I know I did), now is the time to systematically eliminate them. You might be money poor, but you are time rich now. If you treat your life like a business, now is the time to make some big cuts to ensure your longterm survival.

Just last month, I cut my phone bill in half, figured out how to cut food expenses by a few thousand a year, and reversed a bunch of b.s. charges for services I no longer use.

Make this your new job & you will thrive.

LordKano 14 hours ago 1 reply      
First thing's first. Sign up for unemployment benefits.

I was laid off last April and my employer gave me a severance package in exchange for a similar confidentiality agreement.

It took me several months but I was able to secure a new job with better benefits but with a lower salary.

Update your profile on LinkedIn. Update your rsum.

Talk to lots of recruiters. If you have friends in the industry, ask them if their companies are hiring.

Just keep pounding away at it and you'll find the right spot.

yoctonaut 15 hours ago 2 replies      
A lot of good advice here. Whenever I was laid off, I tried to send out a minimum of ten new contact emails a day. (Longest layoff, two months. Shortest was 14 days.)

Make sure that you sign up for unemployment compensation immediately--sign up before you need it. If you're in the US, there's (often?) a waiting-week period you won't be compensated for; if you sign up immediately, you can get that out of the way first thing. Good luck!

southphillyman 14 hours ago 0 replies      
That sucks. Luckily in this environment you have a good chance of actually making "extra money" due to the layoff (severance + new job pay overlap)I echo the suggestion to take some time off and travel if your state's unemployment situation allows it (some states now require you to physically check in to receive unemployment benefits)
stevenmays 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I got laid off a year ago. I got severance + unemployment, making more cash then I did at work. Within a month I found a new job making 40% more. This could be a blessing. Treat it as such, and enjoy the paid search for better employment.
JanneVee 19 hours ago 0 replies      
My advice is don't burn any bridges on your way out.
codemogul 13 hours ago 0 replies      
1. Incorporate - Create a name and make yourself a company. In the US, do your state incorporation papers (most are on-line) and get a TIN/EIN from the IRS, and open and fund a bank account in the company name. This allows you to do consulting work or even be called back by your former employer as a contractor, and it puts you in the right frame of mind for maintaining accounting and expenses while you are off work.2. Meet people - Get out for networking events in your industry and visit a BNI chapter. Look for professional associations and groups in your area. Make networking your new job, even if you don't think you are good at it. Time to practice! The way to find better job opportunities is to be actively exploring the market. Sitting behind a screen mining the job boards is not a motivating exercise and does not make you visible.3. Keep your schedule - There are work hours, and non-work hours, and don't let your typical work patterns fall out of sync. It's better for your brain and your emotional state.4. Cut your expenses - Your revenues just went to 0, so time to get rid of subscriptions and habits that are costing you money. Cook at home and stop eating out, and make those rare times that you do eat out or grab a coffee be as an expense for your business.5. Get fit - Join a gym, buy some running shoes, get out and restore your body. Fitness sharpens the mind, and a fit and trim individual finds work faster. Sad but true.6. Keep a journal - Dump your thoughts. Capture your ideas. Get that stuff out of your head and make it real. You will find great catharsis in doing so, and some day you will re-read it from a very different perspective.

Welcome to the next chapter of your life, cheers!

edw519 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Truth be told I was planning on quitting at 3pm during my bi-weekly one-on-one with the CTO, so I'm taking it in stride/happy.

Happy? You should be ecstatic. You just won the lottery!

What you would have received if you had quit at 3pm: nothing.

What you will receive because they beat you to it: 4 weeks pay, 5 weeks benefits, 26 weeks (potentially) unemployment. I dunno, something like $10,000 to $20,000.

Count you lucky stars and enjoy your lottery winnings. I wish I could figure out how to do that.

joss82 18 hours ago 0 replies      
I would recommend this article which is exactly about the situation you're in:


It was written by a fellow HNer a few years ago, but still relevant today, IMHO.

Edit: shortened overlong sentence.

ajeet_dhaliwal 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Did the internal re-org involve only you getting terminated? If not it sounds like it's a time to celebrate. You were going to resign later the same day and now you get the same result along with a month of pay. Re-orgs happen and some good staff are let go (Sony even called the staff they let go yesterday 'high caliber' http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2017-01-12-guerrila-ca...).

That said, I like the question, I have never been laid off or terminated, I've resigned from all 4 jobs I've had (employed at the 5th) and so I'm reading other answers to see if there are real issues to be aware of should it happen to me.

lr4444lr 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Sounds a little more than coincidental that were you planning on quitting anyway. Can you explain further?
z5h 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Send an email to your peers explaining that although you might not agree with reasons, you understand management needs to do what they think makes sense. And that you enjoyed your time together, wish them success, etc.
foxylad 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Don't take it personally. Any energy you use being bitter and making yourself a victim is worse than wasted - it makes things worse.

It's great that you were thinking of leaving anyway. Rejoice that you get the benefits for slightly longer than you would anyway, and move on.

icedchai 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Since you were planning on leaving anyway, what's the concern? Enjoy your severance, relax, and sign up for that government money (unemployment.)
anonu 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Don't disparage your former employer - regardless of how the breakup went. I feel that in retrospect these things are for the better. You didn't want to be there anyway - they just made their move first.
kapauldo 16 hours ago 0 replies      
You may want to buy some time by contracting with a staffing agency. You'll earn a nice premium in salary and can take your time contemplating your next chapter.
mrmondo 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Clear your mind of feelings of self doubt, clarify with yourself what you learnt from your role and the work you did. Find value in this and use it to move forward.
codingdave 17 hours ago 0 replies      
You have 4 paid weeks not to think about what to do next, but to think about where you want to be in the future, and plan your first steps for getting there.
nolite 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Don't get down on yourself. It happens to the best of us (and probably more often to the best of us because we cost more)
mxuribe 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I feel for you. I just recently went through a similar situation. I had never before been laid off. A re-org took place in my business unit, and a few people in my department were laid off including me; the company stated very clearly it was due to re-org and NOT for performance reasons. Further, it happened immediately before the holidays.

I was very lucky in that another division in the same company was having a different re-org. and a few jobs opened up, so I applied for, and got another job. Same company, different business unit. Less than ideal, but I count myself lucky. (Although jobs are posted out there, its extremely rare that companies hire or conduct interviews during the holidays!) But the feeling of having been laid off was quite devastating; again especially since I had never gone through something like that.

I think the advice that others have been offering seems pretty good. While my lay off period was extremely short, I myself woke up every morning - as if at any other regular job - and kept searching/applying for jobs. I think that "routine" helped me deal with the whole thing at least emotionally. I also like some advice throughout the comments here about working on a side project. That could help in several ways:

* Keep your mind off the challenges (physical, social, emotional, etc.) associated with finding new employment.

* Maybe it could turn into a little revenue on the side to supplement unemployment, etc.

* Possibly, it could turn into an opportunity to go into business for yourself. Even if it doesn't make you a millionaire, or is short-lived, its still work. Maybe it might pay bills, and you can feel good about putting it on your resume/linkedIn, etc. (In the state of NJ, you are allowed to collect unemployment and still have a part-time side business [1]...But there are caveats and of course I'll disclaimer that I am not a lawyer. So you'll want to seek out professional legal advice if you're considering this.)

* Even if the side project results in no new business, you will have picked up some new skills, or perhaps improved any existing skills. And, if it involves other people - like a meetup - maybe you can get some future business/opportunity contacts - i.e. networking!

The only other advice I can give you: stay positive, and keep yourself busy so as to avoid getting into a negative groove. Good luck!!!

[1] See "Part-Time Corporate Officer/Owner" section on http://lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/ui/aftrfile/corporate.html

xchip 16 hours ago 1 reply      
It also depends on what the labor law in your country says. Are you in the US?
Ask HN: Does Anyone Know What Text Editor Digital Ocean Use?
9 points by bwhites  1 day ago   7 comments top
dtnewman 1 day ago 1 reply      
Seems very similar to this: http://iphands.github.io/Meltdown/
Ask HN: Having to waive copyright to works created/derived during an interview?
5 points by thefastlane  1 day ago   4 comments top 3
kafkaesq 1 day ago 0 replies      
None of this seems normal to me. Thoughts?

Their reasoning is probably that this will (1) prevent other companies from copying their process (such as the minutiae of their interview questions), and (2) discourage answer-sharing (on sites such as Glassdoor) and last but not least (3) discourage whistleblowing (or any other public exposure) of said techniques and processes, which -- if par for the course in this industry -- are likely to be just as half-baked, shoddy, and/or downright nutty as at anyplace else.

And to do (1)+(2)+(3) with significant muscle, i.e. ammunition to sue your pants of with, if they can catch and identify you that is.

Is it "normal"? Well it don't seem like common practice -- yet (but then again I haven't looked too closely at the fine print on the few interview "services" I've reluctantly used in the recent past).

To my ears it definitely feels invasive and creepy. But what matters is whether it's normal for you, which is entirely up to you to decide. And if it doesn't feel right -- well, it's like any other humiliation companies try to make you go through in exchange for the privilege of feeding at their table. It's tough to make the call sometimes, but fortunately (in the current climate at least) the market should be firmly on your side, by and large.

sova 1 day ago 1 reply      
Consider anything you could "sign" to be in negotiation until you do. You can strike things out that you don't agree to, even rewrite the language and initial by it. That way you can agree to a "line-item vetoed" version of whatever it is you are signing. It's up to the other entity to "accept" your new terms. Typically they do without a second glance. People always try and get you to waive rights to your stuff. I just cross it out and move along. If they don't like it, tough.
username223 1 day ago 0 replies      
That seems pretty normal to me: most EULAs and employment contracts are some version of "we reserve as many rights as we can." I assume Karat also has a binding arbitration clause.
Ask HN: Would you still move to the Bay Area?
9 points by baccheion  1 day ago   16 comments top 9
aphextron 1 day ago 1 reply      
Forget about the rent prices. It's really not that big of a deal. Being black is not an issue. I've never had a problem here. There are very few places in the country more diverse and inclusive than the bay area. After all your expenses you will still be making 10-20% more than anywhere else and the job market is on fire. Any decent engineer can come and go to jobs as they please around here. I can't imagine a better place to be.
efrafa 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I moved to SF from Europe and Im glad I did it.I will probably not stay here my whole life but its a great experience.

I found a very nice studio in Marina (pacific heights) for 2.5k, and it was pretty much first place I applied to, so finding place at least for me was super easy.

Eridrus 1 day ago 1 reply      
I moved from the bay to NYC last year and thought that there is enough tech here for it to not hurt my career. I wasn't wrong, but as I decided to make a career change to become an ML engineer, I found that there was noticeably less opportunity here than in the bay. I still found a good job in the end, but there were just so many more interesting jobs back there.

I don't know if it's worthwhile to go to the bay for purely financial reasons, but it definitely still seems like a good place to go for career reasons.

I'm sort of expecting to move back to the bay eventually, I'm just hoping that they get their head out of their ass and build some more housing.

runT1ME 1 day ago 0 replies      
The Bay Area is about the only place I'd relocate to. I'm picky about what teams I'd want to work for, so the only way I'm going to upend my life, sell my house, buy a house (or find a place to rent) is if I know that I won't have to do it again if things don't work out.

I'd throw LA into the mix too, as it has a growing tech scene and a lot of things going for it. Seattle, Austin, and maybe Boulder if you can survive the cold.

rayj 1 day ago 0 replies      
Seattle median home value is $612,000. San Francisco median home value is $1,132,300 (zillow).

Assuming all other factors are equal that means you need to save almost twice as much for a down payment in these areas. If you are making >100k/year CA income tax will further complicate matters.

Seattle home prices are about 1/2 SF. There is no state income tax, so add on 8% to your income. Salaries are slightly lower, but not by much.

If you don't care about culture and just want to make/save lots of money, this is the place to be.

prostoalex 1 day ago 1 reply      
After taxes, rent and food, what is the net savings in your bank account today?

Then evaluate your offer and calculate net savings in Bay Area.

For many (especially those currently located in low-paying areas such as Eastern Europe or some Asian countries) the net savings are greater with all things considered, therefore a move makes sense. For others the increase is marginal or non-existent, as high salaries exist elsewhere in the world, so they won't bother.

xchip 1 day ago 0 replies      
Nevermind being black. I was there for 3 years, I am Spanish, my English was far from perfect and people were really nice to me.

I used to pay $500 for a huge room in a flat shared with 2 other people :)

mud_dauber 1 day ago 1 reply      
I travel between Sunnyvale (company HQ) and Austin (home) fairly often. It all depends on your priorities of course - but the quality of life in the Bay Area doesn't hold a candle to Austin.
thrwythrwy 1 day ago 0 replies      
go for it, you won't be disappointed.
Ask: why some neighbourhoods feel more lively/alive than the others
7 points by PixelMath  1 day ago   1 comment top
itamarst 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Even my mother can run Linux
85 points by ntnsndr  1 day ago   62 comments top 22
heyalexej 1 day ago 2 replies      
My parents are both ~60 y/o and run Ubuntu since roughly 5 years. I gave them a crash course over the course of 3 days and my mother took notes on all the things that she uses daily - spread sheets, word documents, images, browser, Skype etc..

I've set up dynamic DNS and a few other things so I can help them if something goes wrong as we live 12000 km apart. After a year I realized that none of them ever asked me anything. So I asked my dad "Why do you never contact me to help with the computer?". He responded: "Well, everything just runs!".

Before, with Windows, I can't even count the time I've spent fixing their laptop.

redirectleft 1 day ago 2 replies      
I'm responsible for my sister, my mother, 6 coworkers and 13 friends running Arch on their hardware, in various personalized configurations that took me maybe 30 minutes each. I can push out updates and flag new software for installation within seconds if they ask me for it and so far, I have not had one serious complaint. Some use Libreoffice for their private stuff, some appstream Office directly into a X window. Oh you don't like GNOME? Let me install Xfce. It's perfect if certain use cases apply. My sister has had hers for 6 years and counting, uses it for web browsing exclusively and only complains when she cant execute nickelback.mp3.exe.
digi_owl 1 day ago 1 reply      
In the end, complaints about Linux boils down to "i can't apply Windows (or Mac) rote gestures on this". In particular with regards to "admin" tasks, that from personal experience they rarely attempt on those platforms anyways.

Instead they grab the neighborhood geek (or should i say nerd, geeks seems to be too cloud oriented these days) and pay with cookies or beer (depending on age of said geek).

What seems to be going on is a mixed message of "hard to admin" and "don't need to admin" (aka "just works" in Mac speak). Meaning that it is rarely if ever about day to day "usage", but rather about being able to admin their own system.

And frankly i think Linux have a leg up there, as things are actually documented and in plain sight (at least until Freedesktop stuff and, their fetish for using dbus for everything, gets their panties in a twist). With Windows and Mac is it all too often some closed up blob going bad, involving magic incantations found in some forum or blob somewhere.

atmosx 1 day ago 6 replies      
That's a beautiful story congrats. The problems usually lie further down the road. When she gets a new printer, will she be able to enable the scanner without messing with the command line? If she's not able to get the printer going, will the support, be it a friend's daughter/son or even professional computer support in the neighbourhood, be able to help her or go like "I'm sorry madam, this is an operating system we don't support" and so on and so forth. That can get really tiresome after a while, so you end up fighting the OS vs working with it.

That is the problem with Linux. Of course it's getting better and better but it's not where OSX or Windows is by any means.

gargravarr 1 day ago 0 replies      
Much like others in here, I gave my mother an ultimatum. I was so sick of maintaining Windows that I gave her the option of running Linux, or she could have Windows but I wouldn't support it (ergo, she'd have to pay a technician).

After her old Acer Aspire One fell apart, I bought her a cheap Compaq 15" laptop on Amazon for Xmas in 2014 and installed Mint on it. Since, as is common these days, she uses a web browser more than anything, it was easy to teach her how to connect it to wifi and launch Firefox. Since then, I've heard zero complaints or requests for help. Linux JustWorks. I think she's come to like the Cinnamon GUI as much as I do, too.

I also tried to get my sister to switch - she is a lot fussier, I got a huge amount of resistance switching her to Win7 after XP went EOL since she prefers the GUI. The difference here is that she uses a tablet PC (not a Surface, the original spinning-screen + pen-based digitizer laptop style machine) which she uses for drawing and artwork. To give her credit, she relented and gave Mint a go for a week, with an XP skin on it (which was pretty accurate, all things considered). Unfortunately she couldn't get used to GIMP and there were lots of hardware issues, in addition to old Windows games that wouldn't run under Wine, so reluctantly I put her back on Windows. Still, she at least tried it.

These days, Mint is my go-to. The Win7-inspired GUI is pretty easy to get Windows-only people to learn, and it's up to date and reliable. As their Windows PCs slow down and the OS degrades (I stil swear Windows has a built-in timer for this purpose), I find that my family members are so keen to have working PCs that they don't particularly care what OS it runs, so long as they can find the web browser. I nearly Mint-ified my uncle's old well-abused Acer laptop, until we discovered that nuking the Acer crapware made it usable again.

Linux on laptops has come a long way, much further I think than any other OS.

tianshuo 1 day ago 0 replies      
My grandpa,now 89, has been running Ubuntu on an old computer for more than ten years(I remember it was 5.04 or something). No viruses, no malware. He uses Picasa for photos, Firefox for online email and news browsing, with a 150% font. Many apps and websites are non-elderly-friendly -- they break when using a larger font. His eyesight is getting poorer recently and uses Facetime on his iPad instead. Maintenance is usually because he forgot to pay the network bills, although these ten years I have upgraded both the hardware and OS multiple times. My grandma sometimes complains that he is addicted to the computer and tells me don't come to fix the computer. But grandpa will harass me every day with phone calls until I come :)
sliken 1 day ago 0 replies      
Seems kinda silly, anyone literate can be taught the basics pretty easily. Grandfathers and Grandmothers just require a bit of basics to get the basics of web browsing. Before you know it they are attaching their cameras to send out photos to friends and families.

My preferred setup is a dirt cheap chromebox, like the Asus for $150 or so. Add 2 4GB dimms and install ubuntu LTS. Drag off all the crap icons for amazon search, libreoffice, etc. Set it to automatically login. Make sure the browser icon is easy to find.

I would spend some time saying that never give their credit card to anyone without talking to you. Or print them out a whitelist with a red circle around what to check for, like https://www.amazon.com or whatever vendors you trust.

wvh 1 day ago 0 replies      
I made a low-power system and installed Debian on it for my girlfriend's mother some time in 2002-2003, who is in her seventies. She's mostly moved on to a Macbook Air by now though. She's an intelligent person and really wants to stay up-to-date on technology, to keep her brain occupied. It's having the "will" to do something that matters, not the age or gender. I don't mind stereotypes, there's usually some truth to most of them, but let us also keep in mind people can break out of them at any time.
diegoperini 1 day ago 0 replies      
My mom and dad run Ubuntu too, without even knowing it is not Windows. It was an easy transition since they never had the chance to fully adopt any OS out there. Hence, they are able to manage all of them, when they are shown how to launch the browser. I'm using a Macbook, there is another Windows notebook at home. All feel the same to them, they say. They believe the UI differences are due to my or my sister's choice of theme.
teekert 1 day ago 1 reply      
Nice, I'd like to do the same thing for my mother in law, she mostly browses the web and import pictures and prints stuff from time to time. But then there is this one thing, she used special software to print photo-albums which does not run on Linux. As a result has a very slow Win 10 PC which frustrates more than helps her. Maybe I can just buy her an ssd...
Jan_jw 1 day ago 3 replies      
I don't know if it's just me or is everyone these days talking about dumping their iMac and switching to Linux?
aphextron 1 day ago 0 replies      
It seems more and more that the actual operating system is mattering less for casual users, which is a big plus for Linux. Pretty much anything you need to do on a computer can be done through the web browser now. As long as it can run Firefox decently the hardware/OS doesn't matter much.
xracy 1 day ago 9 replies      
Here's a question. Currently I hate Macs (for the expense), and Windows (for a number of reasons having to do with the OS).

But I have been questioning what the best flavor of linux to set up someone who has little to no "technology skills", on. Does anyone have a good recommendation?

meir_yanovich 1 day ago 0 replies      
My 9 old kid also using Ubuntu 16 on my old 10 years ibm laptop.

its magic , i carry USB disk with Ubuntu installation every where to save old laptops ...

kalleboo 1 day ago 0 replies      
What does she use it for? Does she organize and print her photo collection, edit some short home movies, write a blog? Or is it just a pure Netflix, email and Facebook machine?
somecallitblues 1 day ago 1 reply      
But you should totally buy her a new computer for her next birthday. 10 year laptop is a turd no matter what you put on it.
pgt2art 1 day ago 0 replies      
that's a bold state, i mean it means linux is now equal to windows its even safe to use by parents, thats an engineering achievement
jenniferjoshwa 1 day ago 0 replies      
Nice. Technology has been improved alot
mundanevoice 1 day ago 0 replies      
Great! Thanks for sharing.
partycoder 1 day ago 0 replies      
Since Android devices, Roku and many other consumer products are based on Linux, yes... everyone can run Linux, sometimes even unknowingly.
Numberwang 1 day ago 1 reply      
Just don't expect wi-fi to work consistently
CyberFonic 1 day ago 1 reply      
Everybody who uses an Android phone or a ChromeBook is also using Linux. It really is about the GUI that the average user interacts with.
Ask HN: What tools are there for rapid mobile app development?
4 points by hues  1 day ago   4 comments top 4
hackermailman 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Lambda-Native uses Scheme (Guile)http://www.lambdanative.org/

There's an example program on the front page to judge for yourself how much knowledge is required which is basically just an understanding of the scheme r5 spec. https://www.gnu.org/software/guile/learn/

brock_obama 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Fastest in terms of bootstrapping/dev would probably be using Ionic or Cordova (https://ionicframework.com/) but in my experience it is not super performant (as it is hybrid) and allows for little customization. Learning curve isn't super steep, esp if you already know Angular/Angular 2.

Coding knowledge: html/css/es6/typescript/angular

If you want good performance & a huge support base, React Native is probably the way to go. Learning curve is probably a bit higher than Ionic/Cordova (you will deal with platform specific syntax for components), but its what many top companies (AirBnB, Instagram, FB) use for their mobile apps. It is really performant. You may need to write platform specific code and it may take slightly more time, but I still would prefer this route over the hybrid app route.

Coding knowledge: need to know html/css/es6 & have experience with frontend frameworks. Redux/Flux has a bit of a learning curve.

TL;DR: Try doing tutorials for both, and see which one you prefer. IMO it's probably not as fast to develop for React Native as it is Ionic/Cordova, but its still the far better option. It's worth the effort to go down the React Native route.

LarryMade2 1 day ago 0 replies      
If you keep it simple then just some good responsive CSS, and keeping in in mind how mobile inputs works vs. desktop.
zn44 13 hours ago 0 replies      
i'd recommend react-native, iteration is very fast and you'd be able to reuse some of your web experience
Ask HN: Recommendations for startup lawyer in Boston, MA
3 points by sentientsearch  1 day ago   5 comments top 4
itamarst 12 hours ago 0 replies      
http://www.rexbaker.com/ - Rex has helped me negotiate agreements a couple of times and has been very helpful.
LindsayN 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Hi there! I work for a firm called New Leaf Legal in Cambridge. We do all our work for a flat fee, which startups love. And we are one of the lowest cost options. Plus we're fun. Check us out! or give us a call at 857-228-8172. --Lindsay
rgbiv 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Sentient - Rex Baker here. Depending on where you are in terms of raising money, it might make sense to go with a big firm on a deferred fee basis (I highly recommend the folks at Cooley), or with a smaller shop like mine. If you contact me through my site (rexbaker.com) I'll be happy to talk through the lay of the land with you. MassChallenge is another great resource as mentioned above. Good luck! -Rex
tylercubell 1 day ago 1 reply      
I don't know of any personally but you might have luck reaching out to MassChallenge or one of the startups in its program for a referral.


Ask HN: GitHub down?
11 points by softvar  1 day ago   7 comments top 6
leogout 1 day ago 1 reply      
Github is up for me, even if the charts on https://status.github.com/ says the opposite.
letientai299 1 day ago 0 replies      
Server up again within 5 minute. Kudos to Github team
d4nc00per 1 day ago 0 replies      
Looks like a major outage now.
friedman23 1 day ago 0 replies      
not just you
eremzeit 1 day ago 0 replies      
Ask HN: Is any tool lacking for more companies embrace remote work?
5 points by soneca  2 days ago   6 comments top 3
alistairSH 2 days ago 0 replies      
The first hurdle isn't tool or tech-related; it's management. They need to buy in. If they don't, remote work won't work.

About half my team is remote, and that's not uncommon for my division. We use Slack for collaboration. It was rolled out recently - prior to Slack, it a mix of (lots of) email and Skype. We use BlueJeans for larger meetings.

For day-to-day work, this all works well. But, it's also ingrained in the culture - we've had many remotes for a long time.

For new project kick-offs, especially greenfield dev, it makes sense to bring the remotes into the office for a week or more. I've done this three times now over the past 5 years. It fosters a sense of team and also allows easy white-boarding and fast/effective collaboration.

All my remotes are within an hour +/- time zone and a short flight away (office near DC, remotes in Carolinas and Mid-West). Teams spread across continents introduce more problems.

savethefuture 2 days ago 1 reply      
My companies biggest concern is ensuring that people are still working while at home, when in the office they have the ability to walk around and see that you are at your desk. While it is still possible to be working on other things besides work, they at least see you are in the office and in front of your computer. When at home they've said in the past "We dont know if you're really working". For my position remote work would work great, if I dont have code to show for, I'm getting fired, but other positions in the company have a problem "proving" work I guess. So it comes down to a lack of trust and guarantee that people are still working while outside the office.
31reasons 1 day ago 1 reply      
Eye contact, Face-to-Face meetings, shared space, white boards. I think next generation VR will be a tipping point for remote work.
Ask HN: What are some good documentaries to watch?
4 points by milankragujevic  1 day ago   2 comments top 2
drakonka 14 hours ago 0 replies      
My three favorite documentaries are:

- Earthlings - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0358456/

- Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (1996) - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0117293/

- Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret - http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3302820/ (some have questioned some specifics presented in the documentary, it is on my list of favorites for the overall point it makes about sustainability as it relates to animal agriculture)

Ask HN: Has Anyone Switched from Linux to Win10 Linux Subsystem for Development?
8 points by throw20161123  2 days ago   2 comments top 2
freestockoption 8 hours ago 0 replies      
It works decently for me. I had to get on the Windows Insider for beta Windows builds because the stable only has Ubuntu 14. Beta has 16.
romanovcode 1 day ago 0 replies      
Unfortunately for the most part it will not suffice. For example I tried to run Node and Go applications and they did not work properly.

Node had error with `pm2` package which is needed if you want to launch multiple applications a la "microservices".

Go had problems with `go get` on sqlite database.

Note that this was about two months ago, maybe things changed by now. I am very happy with Win10 in general, but that is because I use C# and do not need Linux for developing.

Ask HN: What's a good developer's resume look like?
66 points by rachel-ftw  2 days ago   98 comments top 24
debatem1 1 day ago 8 replies      
One page. One page. One page. Only one page. No more pages. Don't do it. Only. One.

Remember that when I'm reading your resume I'm reading. Write it to tell the story of who you are and who you want to be as well as you are able. Cut out things that don't fit that story-- you can always pleasantly surprise them later with the extra skills.

Unless you've worked on something that got put on a billboard near my house, I don't know what your project's codename was. "Developed key metrics for Project Hazel" translates to "measured brown thing" in my mind.

Many engineers find it distasteful to describe their contributions in glowing terms. But that's the game and because I can't tell you're being demure I'm going to turn the brightness down two notches on your resume same as everyone else's. So amp it up until it feels gross (and not much further).

JamesBarney 1 day ago 0 replies      
1. Include relevant skills and keywords because many resumes will be processed by H.R./machine doing simple keyword matching.

2. Try to keep it short(1 page). Resumes are usually not read but skimmed. Most hiring managers are given 20-50 resumes and very little time to decide who to pick for a phone screen.(typically 3-5 minutes or less)

3. Don't be afraid to use an interesting conversational writing style. So 80% of resumes read like a badly translated instructions manual from a 1970s VCR.

4. Structure your resume to put your best qualities first. If you went to a good school or got a good GPA put that on top. If you kicked but at your last job and got promoted a lot put that at the top.

probinso 1 day ago 0 replies      
Your resume architecture will change dramatically with every stage in your career. It is not critical for a resume these days to be only one page, but it would be silly for you to include an entire detailed education on a resume for an industry developer of several years.

Your content should be increasingly selective with every position you get, and every award you get, and every a commendation.

It should be very easy for employers to identify what conversation pieces you are ready for. This can be provided in the form of a side project list, a neat contributions list comma a extracurricular, or presentations you provided. Anything on your resume should be something that you can talk about in great detail. For every interview that I've had, I re-read through code Snippets of all projects I have listed. When Review Time becomes greater than necessary, I delete projects from my resume.

You should also update your resume monthly, you often don't understand or remember what new things should be added to your resume unless you do this as a rolling task. This can accumulate until you are finally applying for jobs, where you would then remove things you no longer find interesting or that are irrelevant. This will give you the opportunity to add non technical, yet important things to your resume.

pbiggar 1 day ago 1 reply      
My best advice is to have a personality shine through. It will lose you some interviews, but gain you others, As a new engineer you really want to focus on strongly appealing to a smaller number of people, than to slightly appeal to many.
skylark 1 day ago 0 replies      
The top answers are giving good advice, but I don't think they answer the real question: "How do you write a resume when you have no professional work experience or CS degree?"


Talk about your projects - they should have a short description stating what it was, the technologies used, and any cool things you implemented (say, some special algorithm to do XYZ thing.) It should have bullet points in the same way you'd treat a past job you had. I've seen one page resumes that were 80% projects and 20% everything else.

Use your graphic design background to help you. The easiest way into a development position would probably be to find a place that will let you implement your designs in HTML/CSS. Then you can sneak your way onto the development team.

All you need is a foot in the door.


Go into too much detail about anything unrelated to the job you're trying to get. Generally speaking every single line of your resume should scream "hire me" - anything that's lukewarm should be cut.


If you can get into a top coding bootcamp, you might be able to accelerate your career by a few years. It's really difficult to get your first job, and chances are you won't be paid that much for the privilege. If you're paid 15-20k more per year from the start, that alone pays for the cost of an expensive bootcamp.

bottler_of_bees 2 days ago 2 replies      
If you've had no commercial work experience, it's a little tough to craft a "good developer's" resume I'd say, so I would focus on things you've created while self-learning with demonstrable websites, as well as clearly list all the community sites/forums/lists and whatnot you're involved with and any contributions made.

In a cover letter I'd stress how well you can pick up new technologies and become useful to the client/business very quickly, how passionate you are about keeping up to date with technologies, and somehow indicate you're not a Machiavellian-ego-consumed prima donna that won't shrink when your logic/work is challenged or when the stress hits.

Employers it seems to me these days are asking much more than they would of any other profession i.e. do electricians get asked to trot out a list of sites they've worked on in the past, or are expected to work after hours on open source projects they can demonstrate when they next go to a job? It's tough for recruiters to understand what you're good at, so it becomes a bit of an art to actually letting people know you're good at such-and-such.

I haven't had any problems being self-taught in the development area - once you've got a few engagements under your belt and referees. Getting that first one is the tough bit, if you can prove yourself after that, things get easier and easier.

general_ai 1 day ago 1 reply      
I just export my LinkedIn profile as PDF, references and all. Have no trouble whatsoever landing great jobs.
kenrick95 1 day ago 0 replies      
For people that are about to write their first resume ever, I recommend to look at the advise and sample resume here: https://careercup.com/resume
gaius 1 day ago 1 reply      
Just remember what a CV really is - it's a sales brochure to get you an interview. Nothing more, nothing less. Once you understand this what to include and what to leave off becomes obvious.
russelluresti 1 day ago 0 replies      
So, honestly, my resume is pretty lackluster compared to most. It's simple and factual. I have 4 sections: a summary (a couple of sentences), my experience, my education, and "proficiencies" (coding languages, software, tools I know, etc).

You can see it here: http://russelluresti.com/resume/ (it prints basically the same way).

Most of what you hear in terms of resume rules is kind of nonsense. The whole "one page only" thing I think works fine for the start of your career, but I'm not going to limit myself to it. I also believe that talking about specific metrics, while it can be helpful, is really the opposite of what matters.

I believe that what got me my first couple of jobs was my cover letter (or the content of my website - they're usually pretty similar). Resumes don't usually excite people. There are a few extremely clever resumes out there that make you take notice, but the rest are usually a collection of bullet-points, and bullet-points aren't exciting.

If you want to to get noticed, don't tell people WHAT you do (every resume does that), tell people WHY you do it; this is what will make you stand out and has a much better chance of creating excitement. Specifically, talk about ethos. If you and your potential hiring company align there - on your beliefs and motivations - they're going to be excited for you.

This generally goes against the normal advice people give for cover letters where they tell you to focus on talking about what you can do for the company and how you can be an asset. That advice is bad advice for this community (development, design, anything at all in the creative field). Instead, convince them that you care about the same things; that the passion that drives them as an organization is the passion that drives you as an individual. That's how you stand apart from your competition.

And if you can't, with a straight face, say how your values align with the values of the company you're applying to, you're applying to the wrong company.

Note: I originally started communicating this way on my own material after watching this - https://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_insp...

koonsolo 1 day ago 1 reply      
Here is some advice that works for writing a resume, but can be applied to anything.

1) Put yourself in the shoes of the one reviewing your resume. What does he want do read? What doesn't he want to read? What is he looking for? How does he select candidates based on all the resumes he gets?

2) See how your education and experience can help the company that reviews your resume. Don't think about yourself, think about the value that you can offer, and make it clear.

I once had experience in both Java and C++, about equal. I had 2 resumes, both correct. But on one the Java part was more obvious, and on the other the C++ part. So it depended on what the company was looking for whether I would send the one or the other.

sssilver 1 day ago 1 reply      
Two points.

1. I don't understand people who say "I don't have time to read two pages, so please send one". Why not just read the first page then and only move on to the second page if you're intrigued and want more details?

2. Legibility has a myriad of variables. I wouldn't rather read a CV that shaves off some whitespace that'd otherwise make it more delightful and easier to go through, in order to artificially shove in necessary content into the dimensions of Letter/A4.

olalonde 1 day ago 1 reply      
Not a direct answer to the question but a common mistake I see in resumes is including a "grocery list" of technologies. You don't need to enumerate every single technology you have ever used, better to keep it short and focused.

If I'm hiring a React developer, I'm more likely to pay attention to the resume that lists "JavaScript, React.js, HTML/CSS" than the one that lists "OS X, Subversion, Git, MS Excel, Linux, MongoDB, React.js, Ruby, HTML, XHTML, HTML5, CSS 2/3, PowerPoint, ASP.net, MySQL, Agile (Scrum/XP), PHP, Heroku, Bash, Node.js".

aprdm 1 day ago 0 replies      
Keep it short. One to two paragraphs with summary / goals / why you want to work there in the email body or in a cover letter helps as well.

In the CV itself, max two pages, bullet points with relevant technologies, most recent/relevant work experiences, URLs for Linkedin / github / projects.

dotancohen 1 day ago 1 reply      
> WTF do I put on my resume?

Start by changing that to "What do I put on my resume?".

Your resume does not end at the bottom of an A4 or Letter page. Your resume includes how you present yourself, and ill-placed vulgarities are far more telling than "HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP" are on a few lines of ink.

ubersoldat2k7 1 day ago 1 reply      
One of the things recruiters seem to like about mine is a cloud tag of the technologies.
JTxt 1 day ago 1 reply      
I suggest looking at "Who wants to be hired?" posts for ideas.https://news.ycombinator.com/submitted?id=whoishiring
DrNuke 1 day ago 0 replies      
One page is more than enough to say who you are, what you did in the past, list your main present skills and give a couple of best references.
sbassi 1 day ago 0 replies      
Exploring Argentina data and there are people who speaks French and English (as native tongue) is very unlikely, also Language: indigenous and Religion: Protestant, is odd
GoToRO 1 day ago 2 replies      
A perfect resume looks exactly like the resume of the person that is doing the hiring. So they would go like "Aha... aha... you're hired!"
gumernatorial 2 days ago 1 reply      
Willing to share if you share your email. Wouldn't say it's great but I've been around the block and it's landed me multiple offers.
thewhitetulip 1 day ago 1 reply      
Does it matter if I have written a somewhat famous tutorial on web development and started a YouTube channel which has decent views?

I have got +ve response on both

Yaggo 1 day ago 1 reply      
Keep it short, use plain text, include urls for your public work (repos).
solipsism 1 day ago 1 reply      
I'm a newly self taught full stack web developer

I daresay the only role of your resume should be to convince someone to click on a link that shows the amazing work you've done. Nothing you write is going to mean anything, comparatively.

Ask HN: How to Implementing Garbage Collection Algorithms
3 points by shefaliprateek  1 day ago   1 comment top
hackermailman 1 day ago 0 replies      
The Art of Computer Programming Vol 1: Fundamental Algorithms has a chapter on GC for linked lists which is interesting and shows implementation, there's also the Golang forums/mailing lists which discuss GC and it's optimization https://blog.golang.org/go15gc

SICP also has a chapter on GC w/implementation https://mitpress.mit.edu/sicp/full-text/sicp/book/node117.ht...

Universities have some lectures on this too and you can look up the algorithms they mention

https://suif.stanford.edu/~courses/cs243/lectures/l14.pdf Intro to GC

http://web.stanford.edu/class/cs243/lectures/L17-Advanced-GC... Advanced GC

Ask HN: Become a PHP expert
3 points by RUG3Y  4 hours ago   7 comments top 3
esamy 3 hours ago 1 reply      
This is an excellent resource for modern PHP development: http://www.phptherightway.com
clishem 3 hours ago 2 replies      
"Learning PHP", fresh off the press, is quite useful as a first PHP overview in my opinion. It's aimed at PHP beginners with some prior programming experience.
xxphenomxx 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Learn Python...
Ask HN: CS courses in NYC
2 points by aaaazzzz  4 hours ago   1 comment top
jonbaer 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Do you attend any Python meetups in the city, some folks there might have good ideas for paths ... ie: https://www.meetup.com/NYDataScientists/events/236709796/
Getting beaten up in the acquisition need your help
4 points by rockin_rolla  5 hours ago   4 comments top
gigatexal 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I've no M&A expertise nor do I have an MBA but I do know at least one friend from college who has been doing M&A for years now and I'll pass this on to him. But what I would say is that your gut is probably right. I would set some ground rules: they talk to the team as a whole or not. Have everyone sign NDAs and non competes so they can't poach one member and then copy your product.
Ask HN: What things did you sell/hustle as a kid?
1 point by Huhty  6 hours ago   3 comments top 3
amingilani 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Condoms. I was 11 and we were just hitting puberty when I decided to walk into a pharmacy at a whim and buy condoms. My lunch money at the time was 30 PKR (.30 USD) a day. And a quick trip to the pharmacy and an awkward conversation with a guy there told me a 3 pack of cheapest condoms was 5 PKR (0.05 USD)

Long story short, I sold condoms at 15 PKR a piece, made a profit of 40 PKR (20x cost). No one else was brave enough to buy a pack at the pharmacy so I enjoyed my position for the next two years.

t3hSpork 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I tried selling bricks door to door :P
bbcbasic 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I tried to sell drinks to workmen on a nearby building site. Problem is they never had change on them to buy. But some drivers did buy, but only made a pound or sold before I stopped this going concern
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