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General Discussion

New To Treehouse: And I Love It!

Hey guys, I just started my Treehouse membership a few days ago, and I have been going through the videos and assessments almost non-stop.

Here is what I like about Treehouse so far:
1. The videos and teachers are extremely high quality
2. The side videos are entertaining and fun
3. The support forum adds a social feature to coding, which for people like me does not exist in real life haha
4. Earning badges are surprisingly motivating. I find myself checking my profile every few hours. lol
5. I'm liking the "Markdown" usage in the forums. I may start using Markdown for other implementations in my websites.
6. The content is well organized, making it easy to find new videos on certain subjects and to reference videos that have been watched in the past.

I know most of you guys have probably been Treehouse members for a while. You guys probably know it better than I do. What do you guys like about Treehouse?

Naeem Congo
Naeem Congo
530 Points

I recently joined Treehouse a few days ago, and I'm interested in knowing how Diego is doing since posting this 2 years ago.

Nathan F.
Nathan F.
30,773 Points

I can't speak for Diego, but I commented on this thread nearly 2 years ago, and I'm still here at Treehouse. I think that speaks to the quality of the material here. :)

I'm not (yet) working full-time as a web or mobile developer, but what I've learned here has made me confident enough to be able to manage my own servers on Digital Ocean, work with git, make simple iOS apps, and tinker with WordPress functionality. I've built, fixed, and maintained sites for friends and a small handful of clients. I think if I applied myself to showing off my projects more prominently (and seeing a few more through), I'd probably be doing this gig full-time now. :)

Naeem Congo let me spend a little more time preparing my answer. I'm on my way to work!

Hey Naeem Congo! Here's my quick update:

I'm currently working full-time as one of the marketing directors for a local mortgage company here in my hometown of Albuquerque, NM.

I recently led a team of 10 in a full branding and web development project (in a 24-hour CreateAthon) that we donated to a local charity here called Global 505.

I am also the Web Development Team Lead for the local TEDxABQ non profit.

I own a virtual agency called Siam Tek that focuses on providing online business solutions to small and medium-sized businesses in the Albuquerque, NM area. (Tagline: We don't just build websites. We build revenue streams.) It brings in approximately 1,000 - 1,500 per month.

My next step is to earn enough per month (roughly 2x more) to justify quitting my full time job so I can do online business solutions full time from my laptop on the beach somewhere.

That said: I've earned more than enough to make up for the cost of Treehouse over the last 2 years. In 2 more years, I'll be an authority in my market and my company will be killing it on revenue numbers.

Honestly without Treehouse, I'd still feel stuck in my job and in my life. Treehouse gave me freedom that I never knew that I could have.

Naeem Congo
Naeem Congo
530 Points

Thanks for the reply guys. I'm just trying to gauge how long it usually takes to grasp it all. When does it become second nature? If ever?

Good question Naeem Congo ! It really depends on your commitment to it. I was already learning HTML and CSS long before Treehouse, but it never really felt like it was second nature to me until about 3-4 months of part-time training with Treehouse (5-10 hours week).

When I first got started, it was tough, because I had learned so much of my code piecemeal from everywhere else, making my code more buggy. I had to completely replace all my knowledge with stuff that actually worked and that had less quirks about it (which is why I wanted to learn HTML5 and CSS3) to feel comfortable doing websites for other people without screwing everything up.

If you are committed, (1) take GREAT notes in your learning project files, (2) learn from the videos with the intent to teach your younger brother or a neighborhood kid and (3) set aside a generous amount of time to learn the first time and even time to review from the Treehouse videos.

That learning strategy alone helps you to gather more information, because you become driven to learn it more completely than you could if you were just learning for yourself.

I remember actually dreaming in code, debugging problems, etc. My girlfriend at the time (now my wife) used to hear stories about what I learned that day in CSS -- even if she didn't want to hear it. At work, I resented being there and would rather crack open my laptop to learn some more.

I think that that is a good illustration of how committed my brain was to learning code. And I think that that really helped me to get where I wanted to be. :)

10 Answers

Nathan F.
Nathan F.
30,773 Points

Welcome to Treehouse!

Like you, the content keeps me coming back here. Long before (well, okay, a little before) I signed up for Team Treehouse, I had always been tottering towards subscribing simply because the website was so darn pretty. Say what you will about books and book covers, but that had a lot to do with my initial decision to join up (the other major factor was offering of detailed material about iOS development, which I see as my long-term game plan).

The cover turned out to be very indicative of the content: polished, fun, informative. And I know they're not to everyone's taste, but I can't help but grin like a doofus every time I earn one of the side videos. They're just campy and fun to watch. I'm finding myself wanting to know more about Lullaby as I go.

The organization of content is also a strong draw--one of the biggest barriers of learning development has been determining what to learn and when and how. Treehouse hasn't fully solved that problem, but I don't think anyone could hope to--the very nature of design and development means that there's a lot of ground to cover.

These are a few of my favorite things~.

Haha! Yeah I love the fact that the website is so well designed and highly interactive and functional. It's probably one of the best websites I have ever seen. And because of Treehouse, I believe that I will eventually make a website or two like this.

The videos are indeed "campy". lol I think that that helps to keep the learning process fun and relaxed, as opposed to difficult and frustrating. It softens the need to be perfect and it makes the high bar of design/development less daunting to look at.

missgeekbunny
missgeekbunny
37,033 Points

Welcome to treehouse! I have to admit I enjoy a lot of the things you said. I also enjoy that I can explore without judgement. I have dabbled in ruby and found it wasn't my thing and was able to flesh out in php and wordpress. I also like how everything is all put together in a nice place and I love being able to hang out on the forums and help where I can.

Being able to explore without judgement is a nice feature.

Also, I notice that before I had Treehouse, I had a tendency to compare myself to some of the best and most accomplished coders on the web--their websites, blogs, applications, etc. I would feel like I was in over my head.

Being able to put myself into perspective as a student has helped me to feel not only more accomplished, but more excited to get to where those great web designer/developer guys are.

missgeekbunny
missgeekbunny
37,033 Points

Yeah, I know it's great to feel accomplished and recognize the things that you are able to do. I also love the amount of proficiency that is taught if one is willing to stick to it.

I love the proficiency I can achieve also. I have revisited my trouble CSS elements and attribute selectors several times so far.

I like to take extra notes in the form of comments in the work files as I follow along the first and second and third times.

I am only 2 months into my Treehouse experience and I have learnt more in that time than any book has ever been able to give me. The Treehouse gang are able to explain content in nice bite-sized chucks that are easy to digest, and if I do not understand the content the first time I watch the video I can hit replay video button without the nasty feeling of someone looking over my shoulder.

I love the way you can do whatever you want in any order without having to unlock sections. Nice for those occasions when you have codeblock and need to think about something else for a bit.

Now I just wish I had enough funds to upgrade to Gold for all the extra content.

No joke Darren! I have dozens of books and video sets teaching me web design, SEO, and application development, but I can't say that I have learned nearly as much from those as I have with Treehouse. I love that.

Faye Bridge
Faye Bridge
4,879 Points

A big welcome to Treehouse, Diego Lucero!

It's great to hear you're enjoying learning with us and thanks for joining the community, we're really happy you did!

Keep up all the great work. :smiley:

Thanks a lot Faye! I think you guys have won a fan!

Edward Boyce
seal-mask
.a{fill-rule:evenodd;}techdegree
Edward Boyce
Front End Web Development Techdegree Student 3,799 Points

Edit: Sorry going to delete my reply, I came from a link on facebook where i thought it was a discussion about Treehouse.

Welcome!

Faye Bridge
Faye Bridge
4,879 Points

You absolutely are Edward Boyce! We'd love to hear what you think of learning with Treehouse. :smiley:

Jay Holt
Jay Holt
15,617 Points

I am in my 2nd month of membership, and I am really loving the experience. Like what Darren Potter mentioned, it is giving me a way better experience and amount of knowledge than traditional books do. For the past few years I have been trying to find the time to get books from the library to learn javascript and more advanced programming languaged and struggled. What I have found out, though, is that it wasn't time I needed to find, it was the right material to use. I love learning, and I love website development, but what I didn't love was having to refer to "dummies" guides to help me start a business. I have racked up almost 5000 points in under 2 months and its because I genuinely have a passion for learning web development and Treehouse makes it fun and easy.

I also love how much we learn about progressive design and technique. I can read any HTML5 book on the market, and learn HTML5, but what we really don't get from those are the newest techniques and tricks. Love you guys. I plan on making a long career out of these skills, and I appreciate everything you guys do.

My only complaint, and its probably more my fault than anyone elses, but I blazed through HTML, CSS, Javascript and understood everything and am having fun building front-end now. I want to be able to do front-end and back-end though, so I dove into programming this week. I learned Python in the past, so I figured this would refresh my memory and I could continue on learning, but I am finding it to be very difficult to keep up with. The teacher explains how to make things happen, but doesn't really explain why or how that is working or why we should do it this way or that. So I feel like I am just trying to memorize his techniques instead of actually learning it. Again, I probably just need to spend more time experimenting and using what you give me to figure it out on my own.

Overall: 9/10 ---- Love the site!

Keith Kelly
Keith Kelly
21,326 Points

To your last point I felt the same way when I was going through JavaScript because it is all new to me. In those instances I feel that if I review the videos again and try to apply the information to projects that it would start to make more sense to me.

Jay Holt
Jay Holt
15,617 Points

I will try to do that! I think I just need to slow down and digest the programming portions slower than the html and css.

@Jay Holt, What I like to do is take direct notes in the form of comments directly in the learning material documents as I follow along. I pause the video and talk to myself in the comments with the goal of simplifying it, explaining all the moving parts, the syntax, providing examples, explaining the examples, etc.

Sometimes, I will have over 10+ lines of comments explaining a simple function or syntax. It may be verbose, but as a student, I can't tell you how helpful it is to have a reference catered specifically to me.

btw, how can I tag someone? I don't see it in the Markdown Cheatsheet.

Jay Holt
Jay Holt
15,617 Points

That is a good idea Diego Lucero, I think I am going to go back through the Javascript and do that, then move into Ruby. Plus, a second time through wouldn't be a bad idea either.

Keith Kelly
Keith Kelly
21,326 Points

I agree with all of the statements in this thread so far. It is nice to have a self paced tutorial that will teach you everything you need to know to get started. I like that I will always have this information to reference once I dive into some projects.

Another bonus is that the content is constantly being updated as standards and practices continue to evolve.

I love the cutting edge standards and practices that we are learning too. The student is only as good as the teacher, right?

Its amazing. I've spent all day hooked to Ruby on Rails programming and loving it. It's been a few years since I did programming and I am hooked again.

Although the guy with the creepy smile really freaks me out and makes me want to punch my screen.

hahaha

Nathan F.
Nathan F.
30,773 Points

Blasphemy! The Seifer smile is legend.

Welcome to Treehouse! What I like about Treehouse so far, is a better overall experience in learning something new. I've tired CodeAcademy, books, websites, and even apps. Nothing seemed to work for me, yet within watching and practicing on one session. I've learned more about HTML and CSS than any of those previous learning experiences. Treehouse and CodeAcademy both have a badge earning system, but I found Treehouse has a more rewarding system. I agree with many things you've stated Diego!

I'm here for the storyline ;)