Archive for the ‘Week 1’ Category

Day Five

Morning – still more of the GD javascript – still can’t make heads nor tails of it – finally Al fixed it.
YAY!! Three cheers for Al – sincerely – he has drawn the thorn from my side, so to speak.

In the afternoon I got started on a new project -re-working a static HTML site into one that is based on a WordPress CMS. Ed has re-worked the PHP files and the CSS to accommodate the Photoshop design – I must say the new site is much better looking.

We’re doing the navigation in a sidebar, but it will be called by a PHP include, so it is important to get the primary keys for the database right in the links, also, it is going to be available in both English and French, so there will be two menus, and the PHP will call the correct one depending on the language specified. I’m glad Ed is writing the PHP on this one – I can follow what he has done and I’m learning a lot, but I am not up to writing it myself yet.

Looking forward to the weekend – maybe I’ll read a book or go to the barn – most probably I’ll end up doing stuff on the computer. I still have all that CGI homework to finish…

Day Four

Okay – today I worked on that darned javascript again – still won’t show properly in IE.

Then in the afternoon, was given a fun task – create a logo and banner for a website in Photoshop.
I had a good time, looking for images online and making up a layered PSD with text and using some of the bells and whistles we hadn’t touched on in class. I think I learned a lot about Photoshop, but I’m not so sure the banner was a success… Maybe I can work on it some more tomorrow.

I finally made my mind up to talk to the administrator about the problem with the other intern. It was a tough decision but I think it was the right one. I do not want to look like a whiner, but this could get ugly and I do not want to be associated with this person. It is difficult to avoid him because he seeks me out, but I am doing my best. In any case, she assured me that they did not look at me in the same light and said she was glad I had chosen to talk to her about it.  So I am somewhat re-assured.

Took me forever to get home, ran out of podcasts – gotta figure out how to skip some of the traffic…

Day Three

Well, today started off pretty badly – I had to finally admit defeat with the javascript and ask for help. Both Ed and Al tried, finally Al came up with the solution. And now, of course, the darn thing doesn’t work in Internet Explorer, so I have to figure out a CSS tweak to fix that.

Also, I’m very worried about one of the other people here on stage. They are constantly interrupting, and talking about things that have no relationship to the work at hand. I am concerned that i will be painted with the same brush, and I really do not want that to happen. I am not sure what to do. I talked to a good friend about it tonight and they said I should ask for a meeting with the bosses to explain my position and make it clear that I do not want to be associated with this person. But I think that may be too extreme a reaction. I will wait and see what happens.

At least I have solved the problem of the extremely long and boring commute. Not much I can do about the time factor, but I am counter-acting the boredom by downloading the tech podcasts I subscribe to, and listening to them during the drive.

Day two

Well, the commute is gonna kill me. I left the house at 7:15 this morning and got there barely on time for 9. I’m going to have to find something else to listen to in the car besides the radio describing the traffic I am stuck in.

As far as the work goes, more of the same. I am almost finished the reworking of the site – I did take it home and worked on it a bit last night, just because it was bugging me to be so slow. Now I have got it working in Firefox, except for the positioning of the darned javascript image-swap. I have looked at the code and while I am the first to admit I am not the best programmer, I can usually at least understand what the code is trying to do. Not so with this. I want to make it do a simple “getElementById” and place it in a particular div, but I can’t figure out where to put it in the code. The only thing that makes me feel a bit better is that nobody else seems to be able to figure it out either…

The problem with us stageaires interrupting the work with questions is getting worse. I am trying hard not to do it, but if I get stuck, I don’t see another way to go. I can’t know what they want me to do unless I ask, and I don’t want to sit doing nothing, so I’m trying to figure out a way to get the guidance I need without being disruptive. But right now I’m tired and out of ideas.

First day

I am terrified I won’t survive this experience.

These folks work so FAST!! and they expect me to keep up…

I am trying hard, but it is difficult, and a bit confusing. I was told I would be working with one particular guy – let’s call him Ed – on a certain project, a website for a clothing company, just a brochure type site, with pictures and descriptions of the clothes, but no e-commerce module. They had the layout from the Photoshop but it was all in tables with inline styling – I was to convert it to HTML and divs with separate CSS. Seemed straightforward enough.

But I ran into the first snag almost immediately – there was a flash mouse effect on the splash page, and a bunch of javascript on the home page, and none of that code had been produced in-house – all of it come from somewhere else, and nobody was sure where. I could NOT get it to work with the HTML the way I was doing it – they kept telling me to use Firebug, but  that was not something we had covered in the course so I was at a bit of a loss. Finally figured it out with the help of a couple of online tutorials, a lot of help from Ed, and an enormous amount of trial and error.

Then halfway through the day another guy (Al) sort of took over and started helping me – by dumping most of what I had done so far and rewriting it with new names and images… This actually was a help, as what he was doing was exactly what I was used to, but if I am going to be working with Ed on this again, I can see confusion and wasted time ahead…

I sure hope as time goes on I will be able to figure out who is my supervisor and who is just someone trying to help – I think this could get sticky if I am interrupting other work too frequently. If I am not clear about this pretty soon, I will have to ask Dani to lay it out for me. If I know rules I can follow them – what I am not so good at is figuring out what the rules are in the first place.

The most positive thing that came out of the day was that I really understand how much I still have to learn, and that this place will be where I will learn a lot of it, if I survive.

First post

So now I am about to start my stage (in English that is work placement or internship) – and I will be trying to make a small entry to this blog every day.

I will be doing this for two reasons – first, I want to remember this experience – and I want to document it better than I did the classwork part of the program.

Secondly, I will be using this blog as the notes for my final presentation at the end of the program. I think it will be important to get a start on that as soon as I can, since I’ll only have a couple of days at the end iof the stage to get the presentation ready to go.

So here goes – wish me luck!