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Thread: Introductiony-things

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    Smile Introductiony-things

    Hello JPF:

    I am brand new here to the forum--this is post #1. So far so good.

    I'm here because, after a long and winding path, I found (by way of an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan) I wanted to be a serial entrepreneur, and I wanted my entrepreneurship to include tech ideas. Having taken a giant gamete of strategy, innovation and entrepreneurship courses at both Ross and the University of Illinois (downstate--my BA alma mater), I discovered one of the painful truths of entrepreneurship in the tech world:

    Rare is the day when the business minds and the tech minds either understand or agree with one another; rarer is the day when both conditions are satisfied.

    In a bit of educational entrepreneurship, I noted that some of the most successful technological beginnings come when >=2 competent (or better, gifted) minds have gotten together, with one of them being naturally tech savvy and one being naturally biz savvy; in this get together, something "clicked" and the tech side and biz side, often by way of friendships, were able to communicate. Then I thought to myself, "why can't at least one person get pretty good at BOTH sides?" While this is not new to the world, it seems to be new to education.

    Even a top 5 MBA program (well, okay, at the time of my matriculation, it was ranked EXACTLY #5 in the US, but still I feel that is nothing to sneeze at) like the Ross School did not offer an explicit, time-saving dual-degree program for the entrepreneurship-aspiring graduate student in, say, software engineering and business. Meanwhile, law (JD-MBA), environmental sciences (MBA-MSES), public policy (MBA-MPP), and even medicine (MD-MBA) existed. What gives?

    So, I said "boo to that," graduated with my MBA and decided to dive right back in and get a MCS in software engineering. I was lucky enough to get into the University of Illinois. Some people thought I was insane. But the people I really trusted thought it was a great move. A particularly brilliant friend from high school--a woman with a PhD in molecular biology--commented that this was a great move, that her husband did the same, and that the combo was worth its weight in gold in the industry (NOTE: I am NOT necessarily saying the combo of degrees themselves, but the education and skills, as sadly there exists a poignant difference nowadays).

    Then, about 15 seconds after I set that up, two of the preeminent MBA programs in the nation come out with either dual or hybrid programs focusing on EXACTLY what I was looking for:

    Stanford, the king of technological startups along with a top 10 business school of its own, launched its dual program--an MBA/Master of Science--Software Engineering...

    And (this one hurt) the University of Michigan, my graduate alma mater and a school of which I am fiercely proud, announced an incredibly innovative hybrid--the Masters of Entrepreneurship. It is a collaboration between the Ross School of Business and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Students take a blended degree (a bit longer than a traditional masters program) that provides with with the business strategy and entrepreneurship skills as well as a very solid technological education; I am not sure of all the hybrids, but there are DEFINITELY hybrids with software engineering and the "hardware side" of IT. Nice...

    So, I guess if I had waited a couple of years I could have done that, but I got my MBA in 2012, and I turned 30 in 2013, so I have no time to waste!

    I am here to learn, with my first aim being the initial OCAJP cert--mainly I want to get some opinions on the best options for learning that DON'T include shelling out that much coin to Oracle for a virtual classroom.

    This is the longest post that I will likely make here, unless some aspect of a very specific question dictates it...

    Namaste,

    Petrie


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    Default Re: Introductiony-things

    Welcome to the forum! Please read this topic to learn how to post code in code or highlight tags and other useful info for new members.

    Hmmm. I can't comment on the requirements, value, or best path to obtain an OCAJP, but I know that you can become an expert in Java with determination, disciplined self study, a decent book or 10, some (most?) available free on the 'net, and practice, practice, practice. There are other forums that give cert-seekers more specific advice, but I believe every certification should include a good understanding of the basics, and you can acquire that on your own.

    It's a pleasure to meet you, good luck, and I hope you find some of the help you need here.

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    Default Re: Introductiony-things

    Hi GregBrannon--

    Thanks for taking the time out of what I am sure is a busy schedule moderating such an active site to say "hi." I agree 100% with what you said--and I have been fortunate enough to get some excellent initial practice done (roughly six months of it) thus far. I would say as far as "beginner concepts" I have mastered everything up to and including advanced array concepts (I guess as one would identify "advanced array concepts" for a beginner...no 3-D modeling yet!). I'm presently mastering inheritance, class/package structuring, exceptions, and file I/O (yeah, I know--all very "beginner" stuff still, but one has to start somewhere, right?). Honestly, I took a looooooong time developing what I feel is a solid set of the "instinctuals" as I refer to them. This came from working with VBA. I learned that one is far better off getting things like a comprehensible indentation structure, the use of primitives (and I mean really, really understanding them), the conceptual understanding of how Java interprets the OO philosophy, how to read the relevant documentation, developing at least the ability to write coherent comments in one's code, etc. Maybe that makes me sound like a simpleton, but I have seen more than a few self-proclaimed "experts" whose code, especially when trying to facilitate learning and the sharing of knowledge (and let's face it, if you have no interest in that, then why are you posting coding responses on a forum?), is utterly all over the place.

    I really look forward to interacting with the members of this forum on what I expect will be a very long journey with Java. Thanks for being my first reply! Oh, and with regard to your advice, I have found that the "Head First" books are wonderful for just about everything, and I am presently using the Java one, the SQL one, and the Python one. I have used the 7th edition of "Java Programming" by Farrell, but it is far too "textbooky" for me. I spend a great deal of time in the Oracle docs, and of course because I am foolish I have a copy of "The Complete Idiot's Guide." There is one that is "Learning to Code with Java" (or something to that effect) and just the "Java" one, and the latter has some decent kernels in it.

    Thanks again,

    Petrie (aka Matt--my forum handle is in honor of my parrot, Petrie)

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    Default Re: Introductiony-things

    Great start, well structured, and (IMO) you've made good and appropriate progress in 6 months. You should be moving from the console to graphical programs now, including painting, GUI design, and event handling. These topics will stretch and cement your understanding of OOP. The OOP light didn't really come on for me - dimly - until ~9 months in, but I'm slow and was studying part time on my own.

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