The journey has begun. I have downloaded Eclipse IDE, installed Java JDK, and created the classic “Hello World” application (which I quickly customized into the “Catherine is Awesome” application). I have taken the first steps of understanding proper semi-colon placement and am trying to decipher the color coding in the Eclipse code editor.
I started feeling like I am on the right path — especially when I saw this YouTube video and I understood the developer’s t-shirt.
Since I started on this journey to the center of the cloud, the most popular question I have been asked is why would someone want to learn Java in her spare time? The typical assumption is that I want to develop the next million dollar app. Why take on something so bizarre if it is not financially driven? Based on several blogs related to monetizing apps, I believe if money was the root motivator, it would be like investing in the Lotto instead of my 401K. From a financial perspective, I do believe cloud services will help minimize costs, but revenue from this endeavor is not a motivator.
Truly, there are two simple reasons to take the cloud journey:
1. Creative Fun
I find joy in starting with nothing and creating something useful or beautiful (hopefully both). One of my favorite creations was taking about 50 lbs of cake, stacking it, icing it, covering it with fondant and enjoying it with friends and family at my brother’s wedding.
I didn’t do it all in one day – in fact, it took a couple years of practice to get it right. Like coding, I am hopeful that when all the practice is added up, I will have gained the skills to create something wonderful to share — maybe even participate in a Hackathon for cool prizes and lots of free coffee.
The developer community is about an open sharing of ideas. They discuss ideas at informal pizza meetings, collaborate remotely across the country building apps, and freely contribute to learning materials and tutorials. The people that are attracted to this field want to be part of something larger than themselves. That is the same reason I chose to wake up at 3 a.m. at Disney World and drag my brother-in-law out to run a Princess Half Marathon.
Because running is more fun with friends – especially when you can help someone run farther than they thought they could, alongside thousands of other people in the same community “crazy enough to get up at 3 a.m. to run 13.1 miles.”
They say getting started is the hardest part. I plan to harness all the help that is available and enjoy the ride of creating along the way.