Where to?

Web Design, The Learning Curve

Web Design

Coming from a “school-boy” background straight to working full-time in an innovative web-design company has been a change in atmosphere for me. The exchange from doing multiple subjects, such as Maths, English, Science, etc. to focusing on one primary subject, however, has been an enjoyable and interesting change. At SIGMA Software Engineering I have been given the opportunity to expand my knowledge for computer programming by helping to produce websites alongside a team of developers, with varying degree of skill, while completing a Level 3 Diploma in Professional Competence for IT & Telecoms Professionals and a Level 3 Diploma in ICT Systems & Principles. Which is an experience and opportunity I am extremely grateful for.


How did I progress?

Being able to sit with a group of people who all have different experiences with web-design has probably helped me the most. When I don’t know something, I can ask the others to see if they know the solution, and likewise I can be asked questions to help the others out. This, in my opinion, is probably one of the best ways of learning as it pushes the team to find new solutions, so we can all benefit, and this is probably what makes SIGMA so innovative. The professional environment was a big change when compared to the classes that I use to attend; this allows for maximum productivity.

The first few weeks of working here we got to grips with using the Multiverse system, our home-grown Content Management System (CMS), which was a learning curve. However, once we got to grips with it we all realised how beautiful of a system Multiverse is. All the previous laborious tasks of setting up a website had seemingly disappeared! Content on a website could be edited with ease and little knowledge of web-programming was needed to do the absolute basics, which would be ideal for those customers who had never really touched upon web design before. However, complex websites could still be achieved using Multiverse as all the tools were supplied to you, you just had to use your own knowledge to get to grips with it.

And that’s what I had to do.


Multiverse, the powerful Content Management System

After the first induction week was over, we began learning how to build a website from scratch. We were almost teased with the Multiverse platform, by showing us what it could do and how easily it could all be achieved. However, learning the basics when it comes to professional web design is always necessary. The school that I went to specialised in Maths and IT, this came as a huge advantaged when it came to learning programming languages such as HTML and CSS, as I had already covered them in both my Computer-Science class and my ICT class, so I found most of the tasks that I was assigned simple and easy to do.

It wasn’t long before I moved on to more advanced programming languages, such as PHP, JavaScript and JQuery. The beginning of learning these languages was extremely hard, as for anything (for those who have never tried to learn a programming language or don’t know what one is, imagine trying to learn Spanish by yourself, it’s liked that). The resources that I have been given while working at SIGMA have been excellent to conquer the learning curve that all developers will go through at some point of development. For me, it has been getting past the use of JavaScript for most of the interactive parts of my websites and trying to shift it all on to JQuery. I seem to sway towards JavaScript since it’s similarities with Java, which I used to complete my GSCE Exam in Computer-Science. Finding the motivation to push past this learning curve is what puts most developers off web-design, however once you’re past it you won’t regret it.


Career progression, the end goal

In school, we were given just enough time and resources to produce a “website”, which at the time was laughable as it seemed like it was only a simple HTML script with little-to-no CSS styling. However, when I look back on it I know realise how precious that time was and how good of an experience that was, as it taught me the basics of how websites work, what every website is built upon and how a website can start from a simple line of code to hundreds of thousands of complex strings. This really made me appreciate larger websites which had become more successful, as you begin to realise how much effort goes in to them. CMS such as Multiverse can only do so much, it’s up to the developer to hand craft the websites, else they’ll just fade away. Working at SIGMA gave me the opportunities to produce these bespoke websites and allowed me to see how they are produced, which will be a precious skill to be used in the future.

For the future, I plan to continue expanding my knowledge of HTML, CSS, PHP, SQL, JavaScript and JQuery; who knows what the future holds. The learning curve is imminent for all developers, only those who have a real drive will be able to push past it.

Published on: 20th November 2017 by Matt