Becoming a junior web developer was never going to be easy. Getting the job was relatively easy compared to the studying required for it.
Keeping the job, and passing my probationary period is going to be tough too.
Last week started easily enough. One of my main tasks was to ensure that print stylesheets of the main websites that I have been amending, were transformed from relative abominations to clean and legible print stylesheets – with necessary information only.
I had some frustration as page-break-inside was not stopping Chrome from splitting images as it should – I spent hours trying to research how to ensure elements didn’t print over two pages, and in the end had to settle for the less than optimal solution of manually positioning said elements.
Then I was set an SEO-related task, which had some PHP coding requirements involved – not my strong point. Ironically though the PHP was straight-forward and it was the CSS that caused issues, as it ended up requiring the carousel to be implemented on mobile devices too to stop the header appearing twice on SEO. I’m no SEO expert but I’m assuming that having a header twice may cause Google to penalise you.
This was fun and games to sort out the carousel, as it took me quite a while to realise that it was Bootstrap (not my choice to use it!) that was over-riding my mobile carousel settings – Bootstrap apparently doesn’t want a mobile carousel, but that was the only way (I knew of) to fix the SEO issue.
Eventually I completed it, tested it on all kinds of different screen widths and device types, and it was pushed live.
Except I hadn’t tested the actual menu by clicking it, of which I had changed to the same colour as the menu text. Shit, shit, shit. Panic ensued to correct it.
Not my finest moment. Why did I not think to test the menu button? Absolutely fucking obvious and I am still frustrated with myself now.
Then on Friday i was set a tough challenge to re-code the archive pages so that they had their own SEO meta data, as opposed to automatically taking the meta data from the first link on the page.
I spent pretty much all day trying to work it out and could not find an answer. I tried various functions, discovered various things and did a hell of a lot of reading. I didn’t even get down-voted on Stack Overflow for asking the question.
So frustrating as I really wanted to fix this, especially after my cock-up on Wednesday. I still feel that I need to prove myself – after all, I have a 3 month probationary period to pass.
On the bright side, I have been set a project which will take me until around Christmas, to redevelop the company website, along with the very impressive designer that we have, and new account manager/content writer.
I have two new colleagues, and a further one starting tomorrow who is a mid-weight PHP developer so he will be able to help me when I get stuck.
I’ve done plenty of good work too and am really enjoying it, despite the occasional day-long frustrations.
Just need to double-down on my efforts, particularly learning PHP and make sure I pass my probationary period. I should do – but I am taking nothing for granted.