Pearls of Wisdom I’ve Gleaned From Building My Portfolio Website

I’m here to tell ya….

I thought I’d write something a bit different from my previous blogs. I have so many takeaways from finishing Draft #350 of my portfolio website. (It is and will never be quite as perfect as I’d like.) What follows will mostly be applicable to recent bootcamp and/or college grads. If you’re a seasoned dev, you probably either already have a portfolio website or you don’t need one!


All about the Git

Photo by Mark König on Unsplash

I’ve recently started working with a team at a non-profit organization which has forced me to pay better attention to proper Git work flow. Git add/git commit/git push no longer does the trick when you’re working with others on a project. So I thought, why not take this time refresh/add to my knowledge of Git and Github.

Git is an open source software that serves very effectively for version control amongst teams of software developers. The software package was created in April 2005 by Linus Torvald (of Linux fame) during a dispute with Bitkeeper (another version…


a functional journey

Now That I Have Your Attention, Let’s Learn About Hooks! Photo by Chen on Unsplash

I don’t know about you but I have read many articles trying to make sense of bind/call/apply in React class components and the information is just not sinking in… yet! With this in mind, I am really happy to know that React has been rather swiftly moving away from class components, and that functional components can indeed handle state/stateful logic. Enter Hooks! According to the React.js docs: “Hooks are functions that let you “hook into” React state and lifecycle features from function components.”

The core concepts of React Hooks were introduced at React Conf in 2018 by Sophie Alpert and…


It’s Math… And It’s Not

HINT — it’s a database problem! Photo by Jan Antonin Kolar on Unsplash

What is N + 1? And why is it a problem? I found this question required a bit of a geeky dive. First I felt I needed to understand a little bit more about relational databases and SQL queries. In addition, I needed a basic refresher of ORMs (Object Relational Mapping). So let’s rewind just a little bit:

According to Manu Ajith, “an ORM framework is written in an object oriented language (like Ruby, Python, PHP etc.) and wrapped around a relational database. …


A Kickstarter/Guide to Semantic Styling

Semantic UI — a styling library for React
Semantic UI — a styling library for React
Semantic UI React

While in Mod 4 at Flatiron, the topic of Material UI vs Semantic UI came up. It was a fleeting reference and I was left writing a Note To Self: “Google Semantic & Material UIs”. (I am continually surprised at the number of terms/tools that come up that I’ve never heard of! #StudentLife) What I’ve since come to understand is that Semantic and Material are both front-end libraries, specifically made for JavaScript frameworks. Semantic can be used with other JS frameworks while Material’s components seems to have been created directly for React apps. There are…


To $ or Not To $

If you’re like me, when Google searching for help with JavaScript, you’ve come across all kinds of answers involving jQuery. Wait, what? What is jQuery? (And why is JavaScript called “Vanilla JavaScript”?)

I thought I would do a little tooling around on the interwebs to find out more. Is jQuery worth learning? Is it still used in the dev community? A quick Google search starting with “is jQuery…” returned:

Simple Google Search on jQuery

According to Wikipedia: “jQuery was originally created in January 2006 at BarCamp NYC by John Resig… designed to simplify HTML DOM tree traversal and manipulation…


A Beginner’s Guide

Photo by Ben Libby on Unsplash

Welcome to vicarious Flatiron School, Mod/Phase 3! In Mod 3 we take a big left turn from Ruby into JavaScript. In my experience, shifting to JS has been quite an exercise in learning and patience. Ruby is so simple, so straightforward. I do admit, it makes me happy.

Disclaimer to my friends: this is not a definitive list.

JavaScript, on the other hand, is pretty fun to write and kinda fancy, although it can certainly be confusing at first. So I thought I’d try to save others a little frustration by putting together a beginner’s guide for…


It’s Infrastructure Week at the Flatiron School!

Photo by Martin Sanchez on Unsplash

Welcome to vicarious Flatiron School, Mod 2!! While learning the Ruby programming language in Mod 1 we interacted with our application Models in the CLI (Command Line Interface). I kept wondering if we were in Rails and somehow didn’t know it. “What is this wondrous Rails I keep hearing about??” Way back then (aka, two and a half weeks ago), our Ruby apps looked somewhat like the most primitive version of Space Invaders, and now on Rails, projects are beginning to look like an actual, albeit fairly basic, webpage. Baby steps!

Images from…


Geeking Out Over Ruby Code

Ternary Operators and Why I Love Them
Ternary Operators and Why I Love Them
ID 86259656 © creativecommonsstockphotos — Dreamstime.com

Although this is only my second week at the Flatiron School, I’ve known for awhile what my very first blog post would be about: my new/old friend the Ternary operator. Why? Because its beauty is in its simplicity. Here is how it works:

is_this_thing_true ? if_yes,_this : if_no,_that

If the condition on the left of the ? is true, the code to the left of the : is executed. If it is false, the code to the right is executed. As one might guess, it’s called a ternary because there are three elements to the…

Shelby Talbert

Ex-professional actor, reinventing myself, living the life in NYC. Recently graduated from Flatiron School’s software engineering bootcamp program.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store