From Truck Driver to Front End Developer

Hi Campers !

I want to start learning coding as a truck driver. I am 39 years old and I work as a full time class 1 driver. Looking at how things works now I was thinking that may be is a good idea to have a second skill that can generate some income in my spare time.

As a father with three children and one of them with special needs, I want to ask you for some tips about learning code in an efficient way.
Currently I live in UK as an emigrant and my English is my second language and when I have time I study Spanish. I like learning new things all the time and when I stop learning I get bored.
My goal is to start generate some income in about 6 months and for this I am willing to learn 2-3 hours a day.

Any ideas are very welcome !


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Success is incremental so starting somewhere is better than not starting at all… I’m also new to development, so I have decided to start with freeCodeCamp first, then maybe a dev boot camp after. Best advice I came give is work through the exercises daily to form the thinking habits. Through curiosity and persistence all things are achievable.

It’s a good idea and you should definitely pursue it full speed ahead. Having said that, six months to generating income might be a little bit too ambitious though not impossible.

Networking is good idea for everyone but particularly for someone like you from a completely different industry. Go to as many gatherings of developers as you can and meet as many people as possible who can offer you work or know someone who can offer you work. Learn what technologies and skills are in demand in your area and have a strong portfolio you can show them that emphasizes those skills.

Don’t waste time on learning things that won’t end up earning you money. This is advice for the short-term only. If you really want to make this your career there are a lot of esoteric and theoretical computer science topics that you will need to know and must learn but not straight away. Same for the latest trendy technology. Forget about it and stick to the mainstream until you are generating income.

The skills that you choose you should learn by doing practical real-world projects not toys or tutorials. Then they can go in your portfolio.

These are just my two cents. Good luck!

If you mean “generating income” as in “starting to work in the business” i would focus 4 months to learning javascript (don’t skip anything you don’t understand, properly research all you can, do exercises everyday that challenge your current understanding of the language), 2 months for HTML and CSS (copy the appearance of a bunch of websites from scratch, as well as you can, try to do a few of those for your portfolio, 5 well made projects should be fine). You can/should start with HTML/CSS, as it’s far more simple to learn. After you learn CSS take a day or two to learn SASS.
Get really good at those 3, make some projects and that will certainly be enough to get an entry job as a front end developer. Freelancing 6 months is harder though, since you need to be able to make things usually by yourself.

Good luck, i think you can do it, 6 months is plenty of time to learn these 3, given that you focus on those 3 instead of trying to learn more advanced tools. Being really good at those is often enough for a junior job (which pays fairly well). I advise you to do your own research however, for the type of job you want and the area you plan to work in, search job boards assuming you already know HTML, CSS and JS really well.

Thank you for your advice and your time.

Thank you for your support and I do think to learn html/css/java script. I was thinking at the beginning to start as a free lancer and do a lot of work from a laptop while I am at work waiting for unloading/loading or my brake and after I feel that I can transit to a new career I can swap jobs. .

I really appreciate your advice and your time.

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Thank you for your thoughts and your time…:slight_smile:

That’s far more difficult because the freelancing business is…complicated. It’s difficult to get work, people don’t pay much (because there’s always someone else working for less) and you’re expected to know a lot. I tried freelancing and ended giving up. If you know people who would hire you already, that’s another story.

If you have the opportunity, try to research how much companies pay in your area for a junior role, and if it’s possible to change careers directly. Your chances of landing a job are higher than a freelancing career, given the time you have available. Good luck, either way.

As far as learning efficiently, I would look for places in your schedule where you have time that is being wasted. An example- I work at a preschool. For two hours in the afternoon, the children nap. I wasn’t using that time to code because I didn’t have access to a computer, but I’ve recently started writing out my ideas for solving challenges during that time. It’s made me really think about the code I know and I think I am coming up with better solutions to challenges.

So, look for those times when you might not think you can be learning, and see if you can put them to use. Maybe listening to podcasts like CodeNewbie while you drive. Maybe writing out pseudo-code while sitting at the kids’ karate lesson- or whatever applies to your own life.

Thank you for your advice…

Very good ideas. Thank you