B05 Champion - Ahmad T.

“Artificial Intelligence, deep learning, machine learning - whatever you’re doing if you don’t understand it - learn it. Because otherwise you’re going to be a dinosaur within 3 years”. Mark Cuban

It is a day in February 2019, my second month at home jobless. My smartphone is in my hand, and I’m scrolling up and down, trying to find something interesting on Youtube. Suddenly, a video appears, with a title “Mark Cuban interview by Jason Hirschhorn, Upfront Summit 2017”. I am a fan of this American billionaire, so I watched the interview and the advice quoted above touched me.

I don’t want to be a dinosaur, remembering that whilst I was at University I ran away from programming courses because I was not interested in the field at all. 

So beside my job search, I searched for an online course that I could enroll in.

I found some courses on Udacity so I chose 3 (Introduction to Data Analysis, Introduction to Java, and Introduction to Artificial Intelligence), which were all founded by the One Million Arab Coders initiative. I started with Data Analysis, and finished the Java course. However, I wasn't able to continue my challenges despite the joy and the passion that I experienced during this period. I have always been passionate about learning novel and challenging things, where I have to invest my effort, thoughts and knowledge to achieve a task. 

To be honest, online learning needs a lot of commitment and proper time management. It is not always possible, but we can achieve it by putting a solid plan with well defined deadlines and small goals. In other words, start small and then step-by-step expand the scope of your goals. It is one of the lessons I learnt and I want to share with you today. Pick a programming language you want to learn, and once you feel confident about what you learnt, continue with another target.

Around the same time, a friend of mine, who knew about my interest in coding, told me that Codi offered a web development course to enable passionate people to learn coding and experience a work-like environment. Rushed by the adrenaline, I applied to the program and fortunately I was accepted.

Today, it has been approximately 4 months since I started at Codi. I am enjoying every single moment there. Everyday is full of added value on the technical level as well as other levels. Yes, Codi does not only improve you on the technical side, Codi will invest in you and you will acquire a lot of soft skills needed in the market. These range from time management, project management, to English and interpersonal skills.

This leads me back to the quote that I started with. If Mark Cuban highlights the importance of artificial intelligence, why did I join Codi in a web development program?

First, in order to build something solid, you need to start from somewhere, I choose to start from web development because it is a good place to start thinking about programming.

Second, being incubated by professional mentors helps you grow at a faster pace than what you would do on your own. Also, you will acquire the system of thinking by failing and succeeding under the guidance of experienced people.

Third, joining programs like Codi’s program is a life changing experience. You will meet different kinds of people with different backgrounds and mindsets, who you can exchange a lot of insights, ideas, and you will expand your scope of solving problems by witnessing others solving their problems and learning from them. 

Finally, you can cite Mark Cuban’s thoughts about the fact that in 5-10 years automation will blow everybody away even if it will reduce the number of available programming jobs. However, you cannot neglect that programmers are the ones that will adapt faster to future circumstances. So, be prepared and start now.