Who inspired me to become a web developer?
This is a tricky question for me to answer because I grew up alongside the web, and as I’ve matured and changed, so has it. From a luxury only a few people had access to, through to that weird Myspace stage, into the behemoth it is today.
I can honestly say that nobody inspired me to become a web developer. Which isn’t to say there haven’t been influential people in my life.
For example, I would say that the expectations set on me by my parents helped me make my own decisions.
Computers and Gadgets
Since a young age, I have been interested in computers and gadgets in one form or another.
I was lucky enough to have parents who realised that there are worse things to be addicted to than a box in the corner of the living room.
Fun fact: They actually wanted me to take over the family window cleaning business at one point.
I remember our first computer, the big white box it was, and just dumping hours into Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (absolute classic btw). But even at this age, I would wonder how the game worked, and even started writing my own script for a game.
I carried this interest through life, gradually increasing my minesweeper and pinball skills, but at this point (like most boys), I wanted to be a racing driver. Then as I got older, moving up through school, reality hit me.
The impact teachers had on my life choices deserves a mention too.
If I enjoy something I will try harder; that’s the way my mind works. IT lessons in particular were made easy thanks to an actual competent teacher in an otherwise rundown institution.
This is something that you’ve really got to appreciate.
Also, when you’re interested in something, learning about it doesn’t seem like a chore. I guess that’s why I still don’t know long division…
After school, I decided I would continue my IT journey and head to university.
Credit to Northumbria University
University was where I realised things weren’t as easy as I thought.
There was a lot to learn and I was thrust into a room with people who were a lot smarter than me.
A lot of this was a fear of the unknown. But this is where I learnt the value of putting time and effort into something, and how that leads to results. It was here that I developed a method of learning that worked for me.
I believe that once you find a way of learning that works for you, it can become a truly addicting experience. Just as long as you’re invested in what you set out to do.
For me, repetition was what got me through it.
I would spend way too much time doing the same thing over and over again, programming certain functions or reading over bits of information until I could recite them from memory or rattle off bits of obscure Java syntax.
During my time at university, I worked with all kinds of people from various different backgrounds and countries of origin.
Group work was a very enjoyable experience (when people actually did the work).
We would help each other with problems to the point where I can say with complete confidence that I learnt more from other students compared to what was taught in the lectures themselves.
Working with others is something that I still love and definitely drove me towards working at an agency like Canny. At Canny, I’ve been able to continue working alongside a team on a variety of interesting projects.
To Wrap It Up…
These days I seek inspiration from loads of different people and sources in my life. Sometimes this comes from my day-to-day interaction with my colleagues, other times it comes from people on social media.
Take Marcus Michaels for example.
He is a front end developer from London, not only does he produce excellent work, he shares his ups and downs that can come with working in this industry. Not to mention, how to maintain the work-life balance.
As someone who believes so heavily in the power of mental health and the effect that can have on every single aspect of your life, it’s no surprise that I draw inspiration from him.
To summarise, there have been many people who have influenced me up until this point. But I will always say that my biggest inspiration was, and always will be, myself.
I’m here because I want to be.