Daft Punk Sound Manager app

In week 6, when we started learning JavaScript and jQuery, we did a really fun project using the Sound Manager 2 JavaScript Sound API.

I finally got round to making it work properly, jazzing up the styling and putting it onto Heroku. Unfortunately the sound doesn’t really seem to work on mobile, so I might have to look into this at a later stage. But on desktop it works well.

If you know that famous song by Daft Punk, then crank up the sound on your computer and go to the link below! (Hint: click the buttons on the website)

Daft Punk – Work it, make it, do it…


Making the impossible possible

It’s Saturday and I’m spending yet another weekend on a seemingly impossible homework task which I already know will look easy when Michael explains it to us on Monday. This is how my day unfolded:

I got up early and start at 9am or so. I’d already been thinking about how I wanted to approach the homework and it didn’t seem overly difficult. I start working on it. Setting everything up, starting to code… and it’s not working. OK, no problem. I’ll just google it. Then implement the answer that I found. Hm, seems wrong. Some more googling and trying and testing and even more googling. For hours. I am wondering if I’m wasting my time. Nothing works. Should I just give up and do some Codeschool tutorials instead? Or some Ruby code quizzes? Ah, I know! I’ll do some CSS. Wow, now it looks cool!

That makes me want to try again. It has to work! Surely I must be able to figure out a way? I google some more. I HipChat the others. Michael gives some hints. I try this line of code and that line of code – hang on, didn’t I try the same thing at 10am this morning? I don’t know what’s what anymore.

6pm, I open the wine. Ahhhh… The world of code is a better place with a nice glass of Rioja. My French classmate says on HipChat that the homework is a real ‘head breaker’. Agreed! Let’s install some more debugging gems. Wahhaay! My error messages are even more colourful now!

That’s where I’m at. It’s Saturday night and this is actually what a lot of my Saturdays look like during the WDI course. I haven’t given up hope, I’ll try more tomorrow.

Anyway, I haven’t really posted much about week 6 yet, so here goes: we learnt JavaScript, jQuery and how to make Ajax requests in Sinatra.

On Wednesday night I went to Codebar for the first time. Codebar is a weekly workshop supporting minorities in the tech industry. It’s completely free and experienced developers help students with whatever they are currently working on: tutorials, a personal project or the GA Chat Ajax post request homework. I was glad that I had help with it. It was hard!

On Thursday I decided to change my attitude. No more winging, no more saying that it’s hard. You are what you believe you are! Steve Jobs never said that something was hard, did he? So I said in our daily standup that the homework was fun and I got it all done without any problems. And that felt so good! (I did warn everyone that this was an experiment).

The homework for Thursday was to create a rock, paper, scissors game in JavaScript and jQuery. I stayed positive and the homework turned out to be fun! It took me four hours or so to figure it out but it was an enjoyable process. And it worked! My experiment was successful. And now you can play!

On Friday we didn’t learn anything new but just reviewed the homework with Alex in the morning and then Jarkyn explained Ajax get and post requests in Sinatra again which was really useful.

The weekend homework is to do a basic bank balance calculator using Ajax requests on Rails for the first time. And you know where I’m at with that one.

…aaaaand we’re back

After a two week Christmas break we’ve all assembled (no pun intended) again at hipster central to start the last seven weeks of our course. So nice to see everyone again!

This week stands under the sign of JavaScript and we jumped straight into it on Monday with an introduction to variables, functions, booleans, strings and what not in JavaScript. Hey, kind of looks like Ruby! We know all this! So how hard can it be?

On Monday afternoon we learnt how to listen to events in the browser and then make stuff happen when these events occur. Again, seemed relatively straight forward.

And then came the homework: MTA stations calculator! Uaaaaahhh… Michael had promised us that we’d never have to touch this project again. But Michael is skiing this week, so the TAs have taken over – and decided to torture us with this.

We had the working Ruby code, so just needed to transfer this into JavaScript. Again – not too difficult, surely? Well, it turned out it wasn’t just a matter of adding a ton of squiggly brackets and semicolons to the Ruby code. But I got it working in the end and went home at around 9pm.

Today we did a code along in the morning where we created a cash register which adds up the amounts entered and displays each amount on an individual line. All without a browser refresh. Pretty cool!

I had some time during the explanations of the individual steps in class and decided to jazz up the plain grey and white CSS design and create a disco calculator. I like to amuse myself with those kinds of things sometimes.


In the afternoon Guy (the A-to-Z CSS man himself) introduced us to jQuery, which – according to the grown-ups – is the most amazing thing since sliced bread. I don’t know, at the moment I just find it confusing. I have hardly even started to digest JavaScript and now this?

Guy started showing us a whole lot of theory about it and then we went on to create a drop down navigation using jQuery.

No homework tonight because GA has organised a joint dinner for us and the UX students so that we can network (what I’m hearing: free food and booze!). Looking forward to it!

On a slightly different note, GA (who are also offering digital marketing courses) had a funny social media marketing #fail today when they suggested that I should do their front-end course to learn JavaScript. Haha! What was that about the cobbler’s children’s shoes? My Twitter profile clearly says that I’m a WDI student… Know your audience, GA!