Being a professional in the fast paced IT world we constantly have to learn something new.
In the beginning, you probably learn your first frameworks in a classroom setting with a professor or instructor working off of an established syllabus, but this pattern does not hold for long. For a variety of reasons, you eventually start learning on your own.
- Always taking such structured classes gets to be expensive
- Much of the material presented in such classes is often a rehash of stuff you already know
- Sometimes you need to learn a new framework before structured classes are available
- Quiet often the structured classes simply won’t fit into your schedule
When we set out to teach ourselves a new framework or new technology or new language, etc we face a new set of challenges.
- Where do I get quality information?
- How do I filter out wild speculations from best speculations?
- How do I tell if what I am reading is still relevant?
- How do I translate a simplistic tutorial into something useful for the real world?
These questions and challenges are tough. Depending on what you are trying to learn some of these challenges may be bigger than others. Sometimes you even face the challenge of not finding any relevant content on your topics. Sometimes you may find an overwhelming amount of content and face a whole new set of challenges.
One of the hottest new topics in web development right now is MVC. It is a substantial departure from Web Forms and many people face a certain amount of culture shock when the start the adventure. I started this adventure many years ago, and I am still enjoying the ride and occasionally getting lost in the weeds.
Several months ago, I started a new adventure with MVC. I began working with the folks at Simple Talk on http://webdev.simple-talk.com/. The goal here is to provide a tool to help people starting on the great adventure of learning MVC.
The SimplyWebDev site aims to be a guided tour making it easier to find some of the best articles and blogs covering various topics about the MVC framework. The goal is to help with the four challenges listed earlier. There are lots of articles out there. Some are better than others. Some were relevant only to earlier version of the framework. Some provide critical details that need to understood for any MVC application, and some are fairly arcane that will affect only a hand full of projects.
Now reading articles is only part of the quest. We also need to play with working code. Working code is important because you get to start from a known good state. We like to step through the code with the debugger. The debugger is very good at illuminating and explaining code. Also if you are like me, you learn by seeing how far you can twist it before it breaks. You really learn a lot by putting it all back together again.
So this is the next step, tying the great content together in the context of a working application. This will be quiet a challenge, but it should be interesting.
Hit the comments, let me know what you think of this new resource. Are there articles that you think should be included? Do you disagree with any of the supporting commentary?
Please let me know what you think!