Embrace the suck

I think one of the most important concepts for every single individual to grasp is the fixed and growth mindset view of intelligence.
There is very robust science that tells us that just by changing the way we view our own intelligence from something that is fixed to something that is able to grow and strengthen through practice we become smarter.
This is really exciting because it means that just by becoming an acolyte of the growth mindset (which can happen while you read this post) you have the ability to increase your intelligence.
In things I try the fear of failure always gets me before a hard-wired limit to my brains understanding and I think that this is true for most people.
On of my all time favourite people is the physicist Richard Feynman who describes how he through years of consistent failure finally managed to solve extremely complex problems in physics. Only by building a habit and a framework to deal with the constant failures was he able to finally make progress and he is considered to be one of the most brilliant physicists who ever lived.
In the past couple of years I’ve learned to program computers. A hard skill to learn and something I’m still a novice at compared to many. However I’ve amazed myself many times over by building things that I thought were outside of my own ability.
This I think is because we are terrible at making judgement about what we can and can’t accomplish. So we simply shouldn’t do it.
Instead we should master the art of doing things we are terrible at. Embrace the suck.
It doesn’t matter if you fail at doing things. It doesn’t say anything about your abilities or how you are as a person. If you instead view your failures as a learning experience you will in time grow and become better at things.
The article linked talks about how parents view of failure shapes their children’s view of intelligence.
If parents believe that failures are debilitating their children will view their intelligence as fixed rather than malleable. So don’t do it!
Embrace the suck!

Starting a simple python server in terminal mac

The thing I google the most is the command to make a simple HTTPServer in python in the mac terminal.

So here it is. The command to make a simple server. Easy if you want to try out a simple website or small project on your localhost.

python -m SimpleHTTPServer 8000

The offline developer

I’m planning to spend a few days without internet but I plan to continue working with web development.

Thankfully I found out that you can download every single google fonts which enables you to create many different types of websites without forcing the website to go online to fetch the fonts.

Another way I stay productive while offline is working on developing apps for iOS.

Do you have any tips of your own on how to deal with programming offline?

Here is the link to the google fonts.

Solve your problems through software, not code

I’ve noticed a problem that only seems to get worse with improved programming skills.

Solving all your problems through code.

I remember the day I suddenly got really productive with my software projects. It was the day that I realised that I should solve my problems through software, not code.

You should focus on solving problems any way you can and you should use any tools you find to solve your problem.

I’m not even sure the best programmers make the best startup founders. A friend of mine was amazed when I showed him how to view source code on a website. His startup just raised a million dollars.

There is nothing wrong with paying for software or using a plugin instead of building things yourself.

If you have a company and you are a programmer you can solve a lot of your problems on your own instead of throwing money at them. This doesn’t mean that you should.

The difference between being a good developer and a good entrepreneur

I love building things and I have a lot of side projects. This makes me improve as a developer. But it doesn’t make me any money.

What might make you a better developer in the long run might not be what your project needs in the short run. Your project needs to give information to your users. This is not as fun as writing code. But it probably is what you should be doing.

WordPress is a perfect example of this

I’ve met many developers who think that using WordPress is worse then building your own CMS. Because they think that purity of code is more important then getting information to users.

If you are building a website that will host content on the internet, WordPress is probably what you need.

People don’t care how the information got there. They care if they are reading something that is helpful to them.

IT stands for information technology and your goal is to give your users a ton of information. The more information you can give them the better.

Facebook and Instagram are hugely successful because they use IT to give their users an unlimited amount of information. They need to have complex IT because giving unlimited information to billions of users is hard.

You probably don’t. You need to give excellent information to thousands of users and the tools for that already exist. So focus on creating useful content instead of building new platforms.

How to fix any error in PHP

The most frustrating part of web development is getting stuck. Research also shows that when we get stuck we get angry because we are basically cavemen.

This is the famous white screen of death that you often find in PHP
This is a great way to get unstuck if you are working in PHP.

When a PHP file is broken your server will send you to a completely blank page. This might be very frustrating if you don’t know what to do with it. If you see the blank page, your PHP code is giving you an error. If you solve the error you website will work again.

So here is what you should do.

1. Remember that every time your PHP file is not working there is an error log and that you should search it. If you can’t fix it straight away, just go check out the error logs.

2 . Check out your apache error logs by typing this into your ubuntu server. This will print the errors to your screen.

  1. cat /var/log/apache2/error.log

3.  Your latest errors will be displayed last. Screenshot 2016-01-30 17.50.34

4. Googling your error message will help you find a solution.

Remember. Every time you see a blank PHP page. Search for the error logs using cat /var/log/apache2/error.log
(for ubuntu server). This will give you a nice error message to google.

Good luck!