So it’s been almost two and a half months since I started learning how to code. During that time I’ve finished the Beginning PHP and Development for WordPress tracks on Team Treehouse. Before starting another track I wanted to make sure I had integrated what I learned. So I made projects for myself to tackle without a project tutorial.
HTML and CSS to a WordPress Theme
First, I converted a Bootstrap template Clean Blog into a WordPress theme. This process felt straightforward. I learned that the Bootstrap theme didn’t easily translate into a WordPress format, which I should have expected. So I learned to improvise. I could easily Google how to add a module. I also started to see common workarounds in forums related to theme development. For instance, manually checking to see if the current page is the home page to display either the website name or the page title felt like a common theme. WordPress does not provide that automatically.
WordPress Ticketing Plugin
Second, I created a ticketing plugin that users can use to create support tickets. This took much longer than I expected and was not very straightforward. And I still have a lot of question surrounding how I implemented the plugin. I didn’t want to deal with form creation and handling myself so I based it on a popular form plugin Contact Form 7. It learned how to create custom post types, custom user type and capabilities, and a lot more. There are still problems I haven’t figured out, like how to pass the form fields into an array. And I’ve felt a little burnout from trying to continuously implement functionality and cleaning code. I guess that all is a learning process in itself. I’m not sure how I want to move forward. I think I’ll just work on it in my spare time.
Finally, at the encouragement of my friend, I learned how to use version control. The obvious choice was GitHub. And though I can only do the four basic functions, having the safety net of version control takes a load off of my mind. And it was rather easy to learn!
Although it’s not that much, I feel proud of myself for how much I’ve learned and have the initiative to come this far. It’s also taken way longer than I expected to finish the Tracks and Projects. I assumed a month would be enough and I was off by a landing strip. My plan now is to be to finish up the plugin as much as I can and supporting it periodically while tackling the Intermediate PHP track. I’m still excited to see where that goes!
Also, I’ve been learning by myself so far and I don’t know what I don’t know. If you’d be gracious enough to look at my code and point out mistakes, that would make my day.