CA 2nd District, Court of Appeal App

Today I’ve published an app for the 2nd District of Court of Appeal, CA.

The App will be helpful for those interested in the 2nd District to look up opinions quickly.
Download here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.cniederm.coasearch

If you know your docket/case number then you can input the value and display all the summary information. On the result screen there is a button to allow for a download of the full case file. This file is downloaded as a pdf and that is the only option.

What do you think of it?

This is the 2nd District’s main site, Court of Appeal.

DC Universe Online App – Update Coming!

Recently, I’ve been a bit busy and got distracted from DCUO Map. Although at the time I made it, I was excited to see hundreds downloading it and enjoying it.

Now lately, I’ve read a lot of emails from DCUO Map Fans that would like to see this app progress even further. Honestly, I didn’t expect to get all this great feedback and users wanting to see more. So instead all the emails, comments, and reviews I’ve read really inspired me to keep continue this app. I realize the map contains a lot of the basic marks but I will expand this app. This is a growing process but I’m going to strive to bring this app up to date.

At the moment I really want to put up an update, to let everyone know I’m here and working on it again actively. So for those of you who are interested in the coming update, it will contain:

-DCUO Map v2.0-
* Update to Map choice interface
* Alert Maps: Area 51, Bludhaven, Gorilla Island, Hive Moon Base, Oolong Island

I know these maps a bit dated but I am also planning to add some newer content afterwards.

A big thanks to the fans!!! Let’s see what we can make.

Diving into ASP.NET and C#

Recently, I’ve been working on getting familiar with ASP.NET and C#. So far from what I’ve read and heard its a very powerful tool. I’ve been working through some video tutorials over at ASP.NET from Scratch and it’s a great resource! I wouldn’t recommend it for the absolute beginner but if you have background in OOP and Web development you shouldn’t have much difficulty following along. I got through the 5th lesson and learning a ton.

It’s pretty fascinating on what I’ve seen and done through these lessons. I’m excited to really learn and try to learn ALL the ins and outs.

Do you have an experience with ASP.NET? What do you think about it?

Your Hired

I’ve been slacking on the blogging because recently I was offered a position to program and I accepted the offer.

This is an exciting moment and certainly want to start off on the right foot. I will continue to post topics of interest on how to improve your programming practice. Since we can all can improve.

As far as this weekend I’ve been gearing up my computer and address all minor problems I’ve had so I don’t have to worry about them during my work weeks.

To those still trying to get in the door stay persistent and continue to program, it will come.

Programming Challenges!

Programming challenges are a great way to practice and improve your programming technique.

TopCoder
I’ve mentioned before about TopCoder and going into their practice rooms to acclimate myself to their process and type of questions. A few of them I’ve tried where I found myself completing 2 stages out of the 3 but haven’t quite made it to the third one yet. I’d suggest to give it a try, it’s a lot of fun especially. I found myself solving my problems but once I look at the source code of a higher ranked person, I’m amazed on how concise their code is. That is one of the nice features which you learn from reading their code, viewing their style, etc.

Interview Street
Another good site that has challenges is Interview Street but these are not timed. You have as much time as you want to submit a solution. This challenges to me seem to be a bit more in depth because of the no time constraint. I’m not saying TopCoder isn’t tough but challenging enough for the 75 minute limit. I have yet to submit a solution yet but I do intend to at least complete to see what the whole process is like.

Bottom Line
[Great programming challenges to hone your skills]
TopCoder: A great site with timed challenges, with tons of challenges to practice off of!
Interview Street: A hand full of challenges with no time limit and more in-depth since there is no time limit.

If your in the same position as me and trying to get a foot into the industry. I’d recommend doing some challenges! =) Let me know what you think about the challenges. Also if you know any other sites let me know!

The Last Few Days

Last night, I wanted to share but just got too tired to type. Anyway, let’s get in to it on what I’ve been doing into attempting to get into the tech industry.

Open Source Project
Lately, I feel like I’m getting closer to finding one that I can contribute in but not yet. Also in the meantime I’m really trying to pen point that one area of programming/development that I am passionate about. I love coding but need to find my specialty.

Blackberry App World
*I’ve been waiting for my approval from RIM about my android app(DCUO Map) this past week or two but I finally received that email. As I the whole email in excitement I sadly found out it was unapproved due to OS requirement being 1.0 which needs to become 2.0. *sigh* That hurt because I really hoping to receive that free Blackberry Playbook. Well you live and you learn. Anyway, so I went back into my developer console and made the change of OS requirement from a 1.0 to 2.0. Sadly it’s past March 2nd so the offer is over but on the bright side of things if it’s accepted I can also call myself a blackberry developer, once accepted of course =). We’ll wait and see.

*In the process of writing this I received approval of my app AND will receive a blackberry playbook! =D

Jobs
Searching for job openings I also come across tons of articles although, I can’t remember what site it was, but just simpled talked about writing that tech resume. I have my well laid out resume however they stressed on highlighting skills & projects which I had at closer to the bottom. Looks like I’ll make a resume that highlights projects and skills rather than previous odd jobs until now.

Tech Recuits: love them or hate them, I really don’t understand them. What I do know is they are doing their job in finding qualified people but do they ever look at the prospective client’s resume? Seriously, about 80% of the time I get calls about Senior positions. I wish I had enough experience for that but they always act surprised like they didn’t even look at the resume when it turns out I don’t have enough “real world” experience. *sigh* I’m sure these calls will continue.

Hunger to Code!

Today, I was going over the OpenGL tutorial over at video tutorials rock and got to animation. So I’m at the point where I play with the code and do some exercises because I’ve read through the source and feel I understand what’s being done. Now I stop what I’m doing because I feel like I’m learning this but I feel I need to do more programming with the languages I know then continue learning OpenGL.

I’m still unemployed and lacking the real world experience everybody wants. I got that “hunger” in me to get this “real world” experience. I asked goggle about entry level programming jobs which lead me to a forum about tips I’ve read hundred times before:

“To get Experience”:
————————
*Open Source Projects
*Internships
*Code in your free time

Do any of these especially in the area of interest.

The word “interest” always gets me because I genuinely enjoy programming in every course I took at the university. So instead of spreading myself out too thin, I need to focus on myself to see what area I would love to really dive into.

Just like a Bottom-Up approach I’ll list out core interests and take it one step at a time to find out where to invest my time.

What kind of interest do you have?

Warm weekend in March

This week did a lot of running around errands wise but doing good and staying cool.

[OpenGL]
Completed the Terrain lesson from Video Tutorial Rocks. I did run into some problems with needing 24 bits per pixel for a grayscale image. Finally realized in order to get the 24 bits per pixel the image actually needs to be RGB image but only using grayscale values. Now time for me to move on to Drawing Text.

[TopCoder: Competition]
On March 3rd I finally got around to the Top Coder Competition Arena. They usually if not always have a Single Round Match (SRM) in Algorithms. I played it cool this weekend and just observed on how the competition is conducted. It really looked like fun and found their are 3 parts of the coding phase, which you have 75 minutes to complete. I also like the fact that it has two division which separate, which I will call the amateurs and the pros. One thing I noticed was that rarely did anybody even finish that last part of the coding, especially in the amateur division. Two other phases take place known as the Challenge and Automated Testing Phase.

Challenge Phase, you actually can view the source code of the user and challenge the functionality of there code. This is for 5 minutes I believe.

Automated Testing Phase, any code that hasn’t been challenge will go through TopCoder’s automated testing to determine if whether or not you will get points for the projects completed.

All this got me anxious to try it out and plan on trying out my first official one next Saturday. It was really exciting to see profiles of everyone from all over the country as well. While I was exploring the arena I found they have practice rooms which will prepare you for what to expect which I’ll definitely give it a try.

What did you get into this weekend?

What Coders Can Do

Just watching this video got me inspired on what “We” “Us”(Programmers, Developers, Coders) can do?
Highlights (Optimization):

  1. Scour a sub-set of wiki from 3 seconds to 200 milliseconds
  2. NIH Alg. – 1 day, Researcher Alg. – 1 hour, Coder Alg. – less than one minute

TopCoder Innovation Series – Professor Karim Lakhani on Open Innovation

It’s very exciting to see the possibilities and where it will lead us in big data problems. This is why, though not limited to, I love programming!

Thoughtful day…

I didn’t do much coding today but did a lot of reading and thinking.

The only coding was me adding a following me button for twitter, haha.

Thoughts of the day:
Late last night I read the article Crowdsourcing & Open Innovation: Near Field Expertise Driving Extreme Value Outcomes. It was an interesting read on how, “…to apply knowledge cross domain expertise is a tremendous catalyst for innovation the world over.” It began the article with an example back in the 15th Century when skills of a blacksmith were handed down by apprenticeship from a master blacksmith. Now of course in the article you couldn’t cross domains if you were a blacksmith unless it involved mending some type of metal. Even til now I still think about that.

Today we can cross domain and I always hear the unemployment rate of tech industry is lower compared to other sectors. As I continue my quest to find a job, I am nowhere near being a master programmer but definitely a goal. When I think of apprenticeship I think intern. Today’s world is so heavily reliant on experience.

I don’t have a master that’ll teach me the ways of programming. I would consider my studies in Computer Science at the University my master that taught me many techniques. Of course with anything practice makes perfect and you never have enough practice. So the practice I make myself do is through my motivation to become a developer.

As great as that sounds to me, I feel like I’m playing with a double-sided sword. I can practice programming such as design, algorithms, debugging, complexity, etc. but in the end the companies I always come across have their interest in “real world” experience. It seems my practicing just doesn’t count as “real world” experience.

As I read The Rock’s tweet today…

It’s nice to get a reminder that this isn’t going to last forever but need to persevere!