This week brought on the end of summer event for interns. Some people are leaving sooner than others, but I myself have three weeks to go. There is still more to learn, and more experience to earn here. Although now I see how constant the work flow is. There are always more features to work on, and always more optimizations that can be made. I have fallen into a routine with lunches, meetings, and breaks at nearly constant daily repeat. This has not made the job of developer any more bland though.
What I did
I have continued to push forward with my user storys regarding rewriting a test, one of the main features of DAQ. This week I have also participated in planning out user stories and features for an upcoming agile iteration. I was able to contribute to the discussion now that I am familiar with at least part of the codebase.
Every problem is an opportunity to learn something new. I got a support ticket back from networking support today. In the ticket, a problem resolution was given that involved tagging the iSCSI packets with VLAN tags. I had never heard of these tags before, nor had I heard of VLAN. I took the opportunity to read a few articles about the two concepts. Although I’ll certainly forget the specifics very soon, at least I will have heard of the words.
Having experience with linux is a very marketable skill. Before taking this internship, I was pretty familiar with a few linux distros, and could use bash well enough. That came in handy nearly every day. Very many of the applications running here are built for linux. Our storage arrays run linux. Knowing some common bash commands has certainly increased my productivity. Another large tool that I had prior knowledge of was git. I’m very glad Dell EMC is switching over to git. Not only is it an industry standard, but I’ve observed productivity enhancements using git’s tools in both myself, and other developers.
The coolest part about legacy code in my opinion is that I’ll have a legacy. In DAQ, there is code that is in the repository that was written before I was born. Some code that I’ve written will be invariably deleted or modified, but there is a chance that if I come back in a few year, some of my code may still be in the codebase. Customers and other developers may be running lines of my code over and over again across many different machines. Another part of code is comments. Hopefully the comments that I write will help some other developer or engineer figure out a piece of code. Or understand why it was the in the first place. And that is pretty cool.
As you may know, this summer I tried to win the ‘Most Social Intern’ contest. At the end of summer event today, I found out that Sam Miller won the award, so congratulations to her. Looking back at the event though, I got something even more valuable than that award. I was able to bring one employee, who was my mentor over the course of the internship. James came with me, and we got to converse quite a bit. I learned very much from him, and unlike a laptop, or a certificate, career advice, and a new friend is priceless.
A good thing about working on a large project is that I’ll often find myself dealing with someone else’s class or interface. Not only does this develop my skill in reading other’s code, but it encourages me to use a part of a language that I wouldn’t have normally used. For example when getting a subset of data from some interface, I had to provide an anonymous function. After a bit of browsing online, I learned some neat things about lambda functions in C++. Similarly, some of the newer code in DAQ uses shared pointers, which uses reference counting. I had learned about such things in class, but never used it.
I am going to Mount Greylock this weekend for a bit of camping and hiking. It’s a neat place because the campsites they offer are hike in only, so you can only bring a tent. I’m excited to do this, because backpacking always fascinated me, and this is a bit closer than I’ve ever gotten to it before. Not only that, but Mount Greylock is apparently a beautiful place, with good views from the summit.