In this article, I will share my experience in becoming an Angular front-end developer and how the FIYU Academy sped things up for me.
When I joined the FIYU development team I already had 5 years of experience working as a .NET developer, mainly backend, but this time I was joining the project as a front-end developer with almost no front-end experience. It was time to learn.
What motivated me to start something new and what were some of the obstacles?
Working as a developer one thing is for sure, you have to stay up to date. My motive for learning Angular was not only for my resume, but it took me out of my comfort zone. Luckily in IT, you don't have to wander too far to find something challenging and new. The only question is how to make the transition- that is the true challenge. It is the same old story: to start working on a project you need experience, but to gain experience you need to work on a project. The real-life scenario is usually like this: you finish an online course and then you get your first chance to start working on an existing project. When you start working on an existing project you soon see that it looks nothing like the one in the course and as a result, the onboarding process is not so smooth. Even if you are an experienced developer, the onboarding process can be challenging because every project is different.
What makes FIYU different?
The Academy is a combination of educational materials and onboarding materials for the FIYU project. It is different and efficient because its goal is to prepare you for working on a real-life project. For example, the Angular part of the Academy is divided into two sections: one for Angular beginners and one section that covers more advanced Angular topics. Each section has a list of topics and then each topic has:
i. a list of recommended courses on external sights,
ii. a workshop with assignments,
iii. a link to the GitLab repository that contains the finished project described in the workshop
If you are a beginner this is an excellent place to start. First, you will be introduced to basic concepts and after that, you get to practice them through the workshop project. When you practice, you can try to solve the assignments by yourself but if you get stuck there is a walkthrough tutorial and a link to the repository with a finished project. After the covering the basics, you can move on to more advanced topics and continue practicing. If you are a more experienced developer, you can read the titles of each topic and if you see something that you don’t have experience with you can concentrate on that topic. The academy prepares you for working any FIYU project so when you start working on real assignments you will already be familiar with its architecture, libraries, tests, plugins, etc. Of course, the FIYU platform is much more complex than the workshop project but the Academy gives you the basics on which you can expand and it is a great reference point if you to refresh your knowledge later on.
What I liked the most was how quickly, as an Angular beginner, I was able to work on a project confidently. Since FIYU is a platform for rapid development I guess it was no surprise that the academy was an efficient and rapid introduction.