How to Land a Job Interview in Programming

You've graduated college and now you are looking for a job in the IT field, preferably, one in programming. Programming is not double clicking buttons in a WYSIWG editor and typing a few lines of code. If when you graduate, all you can code is basic, you will have a hard time. Hopefully, you did not goof off in your classes and forget all the coding experience you learned in your four year journey. You actually want to put those skills to good use.

If you want to get a good job, here is some advice. Become good at public speaking. Learn how to interview and be interviewed. Know your stuff. Take a career development class of some kind. You don't have to be the best programmer, but having a lot of charisma can be the deciding factor in getting your job. Mumbling your words and staring at your shoes during an interview isn't going to help you. Don't make the mistake of only relying on your charisma to weasel your way in, though. You won't be able to keep your job before your style wears thin and your lack of talent becomes apparent. As long as you know your stuff, and have experience, then the interview will be in the bag. After all most interviews are, mostly, just about seeing how well you can talk about the subject. If you can do that, then your chances of getting the job are high, whether you have the skills or not.

Good engineers are not typically good with communicating. I highly recommend communication classes as well, provided you have some good engineering skills to go with them. Otherwise my advice is look for a government job.

Some employers once gave me these very important pieces of information. If someone was awkward or nervous and didn't make eye contact, but did well with the technical parts of the interview, then the employer would hire them. If someone was great with being eloquent, smooth, and charismatic, but failed the technical subjects, then the employer would have no interest in hiring them. Being smooth does overcome technical incompetence, or at least largely so. Being poor at interpersonal communications wont help. Knowing your stuff is certainly important, but there are indeed other aspects. Being able to learn, thinking about customers, working on teams, knowing when to change approaches, generating ideas and weighing them, and so on.

People in general are more inclined to hire the mostly charismatic over the total nervous wreck. It applies to all jobs in general. Just how well can a nervous wreck fully explain he knows his stuff as well as work well with his co-workers on a team or interact with customers on a team?

It's not as easy as wishing the interviewer would just hand out a test and say "here you go, code this," and whoever got the highest grade would get the job. Most of the time, the interviewer hires people they think they will like, and … Read the rest

Things They Don't Teach You in Highschool

Can you dream a dream?

Or am I just dreaming?

Fragments of memories scatter through my mind,

as I frantically try to piece them back together.

Am I wasting time?

Or is time wasting me?

Hanging on to every piece of the past,

I cannot seem to bear with myself.

Do I anger my imagination?

Or does my imagination anger me?

Every question that is thrown at me,

is now answered without a single ounce of creativity.

Is my happiness gone?

Or have I just given up?

I can't seem to figure out my purpose anymore,

does that mean I am not significant in this life?… Read the rest

Chevy Truck Restoration: Websites that Sell the Parts Needed for Your Project

My fiancé, Dave is restoring a 1969 Chevy C-10 Pick-up. He actually has two Chevy C-10 trucks on our property: one for parts and the one he is restoring.

He is looking for both original and after-market parts during this restoration project, and since there is no one local that he knows that deals with parts for this type of place, he has been tirelessly searching online for parts for his Chevy truck restoration project.

He says that he found sites for Chevy truck parts easily when he simply searched for "Chevy C-10 truck." However, not all sites that sell these Chevy truck parts were user-friendly. I asked him to share his top three picks for parts for his C-10 Chevy truck. Here is what he told me, with a bit of my own opinions as an e-commerce employee.

BrothersTrucks.com
Why he likes it: "It has a very good catalog; easy to look through."

BrothersTrucks.com offers parts and accessories from Chevy and GMC trucks for years 1947 through 1987. BrothersTrucks.com is extremely professional looking from an e-commerce standpoint. The categorized left-hand navigation of this site makes it easy for truck fanatics to find what they are looking for regarding their Chevy truck or GMC truck. The site also offers a log-in feature, allowing users to create an account for quicker ordering and also to check order history and order status. This site also offers tech articles, truck show schedules, photo galleries and more. A big plus for any online shopping experience is that BrothersTrucks.com also has a customer service line. And, you can also request a print catalog for quick and easy reference.

EarlyClassic.com
Why he likes it: "They have a lot of after market parts for this truck. It's very easy to use."

I work in e-commerce and I think this site is a little "old-school" looking. In my professional opinion, this site needs a redesign and an updated navigation. However, Dave likes the way you can search for items on the EarlyClassic.com catalog page. This search function is a good feature, and probably the best thing about the site. EarlyClassic.com also has a page where customers can show off their truck restoration projects. There are also lots of technical articles filled with advice for people like Dave who want to restore old Chevys or other old trucks.

LMCTrucks.com
Why he likes it:
 "This has a lot of original parts. It's easy to find parts. Very descriptive site."

LMCTrucks.com, which also has a print catalog, bills itself as the largest seller of parts of Chevy and Ford pick-up trucks. The site also offer parts of GMC and Dodge trucks as well. LMCTrucks.com allows users to view each and every single page of the print catalog, and allows for zooming in for a close-up view of a part or page. This is a very different experience for online shoppers, as you click on the part number within the catalog page to order. This is not the norm for e-commerce … Read the rest

How to Find a Great Website for Boomers

How does a Boomer find a great website just for them? EMarketer, an online market and research organization, lists specified data proving that the boomer generation -as opposed to the senior population today-will be worth its weight in gold, if properly tended to, in years to come. That’s why the Web cannot afford to see the boomer generation as the seniors of old (pun absolutely intended). Let’s stroll down Weberly Lane and see what websites are available today specifically geared towards boomers:

1) Eons.com – I wrote an article about Eons.com some time ago giving several reasons why boomers should pass when seeking a site of their own. Even so, it is one of the few sites online that targets boomers, only. But, if you look closely, there are still parts of the site that border on very old age. Boomers don’t like to be thought of as old, even if we are. Jeff Taylor, the former CEO of Monster.com is the brains behind Eons.

2) GrandmaBetty.com – This site is a clearinghouse for Boomer sites. But, alas, Grandma thinks boomers are seniors too. At least that’s what her title says. “The starting point for Boomers and Seniors”. Nice thought, Grandma Betty, but I think I’ll get in my convertible and go to the gym instead. Granted, many Boomers have a myriad of health problems. These boomers might be trying to figure out what nursing home to spend their last days in – but I would hazard a guess – and say- most Boomers don’t want to be one of them. And aren’t. Let’s face it – the minute most boomers see senior coupled with them in an online title, the clicking begins.

3) Aging Hipsters: This is my favorite. It is cool, groovy, and has flower power. Unlike the majority of Boomer/ Senior sites – Aging Hipsters is all about Boomers and where they came from. This site recognizes that the boomer generation is literate and engaged when it comes to broadband internet use, and even, yes—-ipods.

4) SeniorGrandCentral.com – Even though, the CEO of SGC states that part of his demographic is the boomer brigade – using the word Senior as the company title is almost guaranteed to lose the Last Hippie Group Standing. However, it’s a great site- and comes equipped with many of the bells and whistles that enable those who come to have a good time.

5) Boomers International: Just say Boomers Everything and you have given this site a synonymous name. This is a place to sit back and read articles, thoughts, and get the scoop on the boomer mentality today. Pretty good.

How do you find a great Boomer website? First, keep in mind that we, as Boomers, still like to talk to each other. We love the ‘Net but, unlike the younger set we do not walk around with cell phones growing out of our ears, – so, make sure there is a definite way to chat. Message boards are cool. Forums … Read the rest

A Marvelous Tea Party

I've been to a marvelous Party,
With Bubba, and Sarah and Jules
We wore Patriot hats
and removeable tats
Rode Harleys and acted like fools.

We drew a mustache on Obama
And spat at the mention of Gore

And we all knew the fun was about to begin
When Bubba hung eight teabags from his hats brim
And shouted the N-word and "Let's Impeach Him"
And I couldn't have liked it much more.

Yes I've been to a marvelous Party
To meet twenty thousand like me
OK, it was not
As large as we thought
We numbered six hundred and three.

We ranted and railed about taxes,
Obama's tax cuts we ignored.

And we all know the fun was about to begin
When Alaska's ex-governor Sarah Palin
Said You Betcha! Next time we won't quit…we will win!
And I couldn't have liked it much more.… Read the rest

Orange Flavoured Green Tea

We all know the benefits of drinking green tea, its anti-aging, anti-oxidant properties. Green tea is excellent for your skin and so is the vitamin C from orange juice.
Why not make a great tasting iced tea combining the two? A healthy way to cool off this summer.

You’ll need:

4 cups water
4 green tea bags
Juice of 2 oranges
2 tbsp honey (or as desired)
fresh mint leaves (optional)

Boil the water and put the green tea bags in it. Let it sit for 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the tea bags. Let the water cool a little and then add the orange juice and honey. Stir all the ingredients. Make sure the honey is properly dissolved. Now add the mint leaves and lots of ice. Enjoy!

You can also freeze the used tea bags and put them over your eyes to wake up tired eyes!… Read the rest

Computer Programming Tips : Fixing Infinite Do and While Loops

One of the most common errors in computer programming is running into an infinite Do or While loops. These are parts of the source code that is usually meant to loop for a certain number of times until the condition of the loop is met. These loops are utilized for specific purposes in the logic of a source code/program. However, there may be times when you encounter a loop that goes on and on unintentionally. In rare occasions, infinite loops are utilized to keep a program running forever for whatever purpose it may be and again, let me reiterate, it’s quite rare.

If you happen to have an infinite loop in your code and want to fix it, there are some steps can you can do to try and debug or fix it so that the Do or While loop will end. Let’s say you want to run the loop 10 times but when you run the program, it continues to run the loop continuously instead of stopping after 10 times.

Before you move on, it’s always good to do some real-time debugging for Do and While loops. Place a command that will show you the value of the index. It depends on what programming language you are using but for the sake of our example, you can use print, writeln, msgbox, etc. to display the value of the index. This way, you’ll know how many times the loop has run or what values the index acquires after each loop. If it goes way over the number of intended times it’s supposed to run, you may possibly have an infinite loop. The index is the variable that we usually assign to count the number of the times the loop has run.

Let’s use a While Wend loop as an example (for the BASIC programming language).

X=0
While X = 0
Print “Hello”
Wend

In this case, the loop will run while the value of X = 0. Let’s call X as the index of the loop. If the value of X changes, the loop will terminate. In this While loop, it will print the word Hello infinitely because the value of X is 0 and it does not change. To verify this, add Print X below the Print “Hello” statement. The program will display the value of X (which is 0) after it displays Hello. You’ll know immediately that the loop will run forever since the value of X will always be 0. But if you place X = X + 1 before Wend, after the first execution of the loop, the loop will end because the value of X is now 1. So when your conditions are met within the loop you’re trying to make, make sure you change the value of the index.

For Do Until loops, it’s the other way around. It will continue to run until the index is equal to the value in the Until statement. For the For Next loop, you don’t have to … Read the rest

Tips for Writing Thank You Cards

Whether you just got married and you have 100 thank-you cards to write or you just had a new baby and have to send thank-you notes to your friends and family, here are some great tips to help get you through the writing process of writing the thank-you cards.

Keep them short and to the point. Thank-you cards are not the time to let people in on your life story at the moment. You should not brag about your new job or complain about anything going on in your life. They are a note to say thank you to the person. You should express your gratitude, let them know how you will use the gift or how the gift has helped you and them close the note up.

Make sure that you send a thank-you note for every gift that you receive. Even if it is a small gift, it still deserves a thank you. If you have trouble keeping track, make a spreadsheet or a list that you can write them down as soon as you receive the gift. At most parties, like bridal showers, someone will write down all the gifts down for you with the names of the gift givers. Make sure that you follow that list and are checking off the people you have sent thank-you cards to. You want to make sure everyone receives a thank-you card and also that someone does not receive two thank-you cards.

Mailing a thank-you card is a lot more personal than emailing the person a . Actually handwriting a letter shows the person that you took the time out of your day to write a letter and mail it, were as an email sort of looks like an afterthought. I know most people like receiving friendly letters in the mail and this is an excellent way to make a person’s day.

If you have a lot of thank-you cards to write out, set up a place in your house that you can have a station set up to write all of them out. Choose a spare bedroom or a spot in your office that does not have clutter. Gather up the stationary or cards with the envelopes, pens, stamps, and your address book and you can quickly put together the cards when you have the time and they will be there and organized so it can go much quicker.

Even if you do not like the present that was given, you still need to write a thank-you card to the person. Everyone likes to be appreciated and just because they got you something that you may not like, it doesn’t mean that they didn’t like it or thought it was special. Focus on the positive, such as the thought of the gift.… Read the rest