I used to program when a teenager, basic on the bbc B and then commodore Amiga, but before that I was doing Assembly Language on the BBC B. I was very good, but then girls and life got in the way then I went into something completely non-programming and at 36 I’m beginning to miss it.
Just as I was about to present this to them I found out they’ve signed up for a trial of a cloud-hosted intranet for about $25 a month. Yeah that’s not expensive but I’m thinking surely if I get web hosting for $5 a month I can build a much better intranet with php etc with a bit of time. Yes it’d be cheaper but that’s not the main reason – the main draw is the fact that we’d be able to do all sorts of things, fully customisable etc as I’m building it, rather than this pre-set boring looking very basic intranet that we’d be stuck with. Plus I’d impress a load of people which would be a step towards a promotion I’m looking for. It’d be a way of doing something impressive that I enjoy because I’m a programmer at heart.
So my Q is: is it feasible for someone non-IT like me who *used* to be very good with computers (making assembly language and basic games on BBC B in early teens)but who’s done nothing since (except for occasional bat file!) to learn php/css/html to a sufficient enough standard to do a semi-decent intranet (i.e. putting files in folders, maybe a search function, perhaps a calendar)? How long would that stuff learn etc? Are my requirements simple enough?
Or will I be opening a can of worms and should I just not bother – and instead let them go with this other one and have to find something else to impress them with that I might enjoy less?
I’m obviously veering towards the former but I may be fooling myself so any advice would be much appreciated!
You do sound a bit full of yourself “I was very good”, “as I’m building it”. No disrespect but even your previous programming knowledge goes out the window with stuff like js/php as they are very complicated languages. (Well, as complicated as you make it to be). Learning php will take a while and is not something you simply learn in a day. Your best bet is to try building the intranet now and google the problems as you come across them. You may want to find out how to store persistent data across page loads (MySQL with insert and select statements).
I’d personally let them go with the most reliable option. Simply put if you don’t know the langauges that you will need to use well enough today, you won’t in another month, or three, or six. Don’t try to impress them based on stuff you don’t know.
Cheers buddy, you’re right I am full of myself sorry, or rather full of my teenage self. Programming at the age of 7 when most ppl didn’t know what a computer was :p Yup, a complete and utter dork! But you’re absolutely correct, right now I’m a total bozo when it comes to programming i.e. I can’t do anything. I’m rubbish. I’m not even rubbish, I’m nothing.
That’s the answer I needed – php is complicated. I’ve looked up some basic php tutorials on w3schools and it seems easy but that’s just the basics I guess. The thing is unlike when I was 7 in this day and age there are free tutorials and as you say google and loads of scripts I can copy and tinker with…
I dunno. maybe you’re right and I should leave it out completely and get on with my real job.
As for impressing, this is a non-IT company. I impressed them by ‘fixing’ a computer they were having massive problems with the other day – all I did was click “ok” to an update prompt that had been coming up but everyone had been ignoring. My gran could impress these guys!
if it’s something of a dream I wouldn’t give it up so easily, just be prepared for it to take a while. But for the time being, it think it’s best to go for the safe solution. I’m in the same boat as you are, had some fun experiences programming as a kid some mumble mumble years ago. Razz I’ll soon be starting my lessons in php and I’m also getting a lot of reactions like hmm too difficult, will take you long, etc (maybe a bit territorial behaviour of some? Not you of course TCD, you’re just an ordinary a-hole!, but if it’s something you really want you’ll get there… Anyways, good luck with your endeavours!
If you were doing Assembly language then you have most of the weenies that program beat. I used to be a crack Assembly programmer. I would grab Peter Norton’s books and figure out how to beat his routines. That being said, programming is like riding a bike.
The new languages that are available to day are just different syntax! The root of programming, which you have already mastered to some degree, is solving problems and then coding some solution.
Don’t give up on your dream. There’s no shame, when putting a solution together to use whatever tools are available. Study up and look at WordPress.org. You might be surprised at the fact that it might just do what you need it to do. Then you can get a hosting company, install it and cobble it together.
Talk to the folks at your company and tell them, that right now, the best solution is to use the cloud hosted solution, but you are working on an alternative that can be implemented later on down the line.