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General Discussion

Jinman Kim
Jinman Kim
5,586 Points

Where to start when trying to build a first web page

Hi everyone, I am seeking for some help on building a web page. I have recently got into programming, starting with front-end development skills. Mainly I have been using Treehouse to build a foundation and whenever I wanted to find out a specific feature or tricks, I would search on Google or YouTube. My problem is that although I have gathered some knowledge on HTML and CSS, I can't seem to put together my knowledge into work. My plan is to build a portfolio to practice some skills. If anyone can share with me their first experience of stepping into web developer path, I would greatly appreciate it. Well, thanks everyone of Treehouse and good luck with all of your 2019.

*Skills I am focusing on: HTML, CSS, Angular, JavaScript

2 Answers

Hey Jinman, building a full-scale website, even something relatively simple like a small static site such as a portfolio page is quite a bit more work than it seems, IMHO. I can totally relate to the desire to start making real things right away, but have patience! Since your interest is front-end web development, I suggest you work your way through the Front End Web Development track. At the end of each course or large course section, download the workspace files for your reference, and see if you can clone and then possibly even extend the example project as independently as possible, only looking at the original code when you really have to. At first you will have to look at the original code a lot, but the more you do this the less you will find yourself looking at the original code. I find this method of learning with Treehouse to be extremely effective.

Once you have made your way through most of the FEWD track, then you will be in a better position to start putting it all together to make a portfolio site. But I highly recommend taking your time and working through most of the courses first, and make sure you finish the course on Bootstrap or take the course on CSS Grid Layout before attempting to build something that you really want to show to the world. Most front ends are not built with just HTML and CSS but also some kind of CSS framework and/or preprocessor like SASS, or some other technology built on top of CSS. Using Bootstrap or CSS Grid + CSS Flexbox is going to drastically improve your workflow and solve a lot of frustrating and time-consuming problems that arise when you try to build a website with pure HTML and CSS.

Psychologists believe that people learn the fastest when they repeat what they learn with slight variations. Therefore, if you clone example projects but put your own spin on them or extend them, you are going to absorb the skills you need to build a real website at light speed :). Happy coding!

Jinman Kim
Jinman Kim
5,586 Points

Hey Michael, thank you very much for your advice. I actually agree with the psychologists after looking back to previous practices. With coding, I feel like I was very impatient but that's probably part of passion. Mainly, positioning the contents have been the problems for me but it seems like SASS and Bootstrap can help a little with those. What are the minimum level of skill to land a first job as a FEWD? (ex.being able to build a dynamic and responsive website from scratch)

I am still learning myself and have not yet landed a job. My focus is backend development. However, I think that if you complete the FEWD track and also learn the basics of one JavaScript framework (Vue, Angular or React) and also learn CSS Grid and Bootstrap, learn Git and Github and a little bit of basic commandline stuff you will be in a good position to hit the job market. I would say just work hard on learning the core skills in the FEWD track, then build a portfolio site when you are done. Then take the Treehouse course on Git and the course on CSS Grid Layout, then start applying for jobs. Also it goes without saying that your portfolio should have a few nice looking projects, but I don't think you should feel as though you need to make dozens of projects before applying for jobs. A few projects that showcase your CSS skills and your JS skills, ability to make responsive designs and layouts, ability to use AJAX and apis at the level of a first-year junior developer and the basic IT skills to use simple commandline commands with Git and you will be a candidate for a junior job. But never rest on your laurels. Even once you hit the job market, keep building projects and taking courses.

Jinman Kim
Jinman Kim
5,586 Points

I think you summed up the path of FEWD really well there. Thanks again and good luck with your path too!

It would be a good idea to take the Command Line course at Codecademy too. Its not that long and not that hard but gives you a good foundation. Recommend taking it after you take the Git course. Being able to interact with the terminal is useful and employers will like it. Good luck to you as well!

The best way to do that it is to take the code source of the sites and analyze it in order to understand the structure it is based on with trying to imitate it, and doing this again and again will instill in you the automatic and fast handling of the codes....

Jinman Kim
Jinman Kim
5,586 Points

Hey Marco, appreciate your advice! How would you normally take the code source? Through Chrome developer tool perhaps? I can't seem to get the best understanding of the code through Chrome developer tool but is that something to improve over practice?