Techdegree journal – entry 1 “How Many Div’s does it take till you get to the center honey?

Reading time: 3 mins

fry div


As some of you may not know I’m taking the wonderful TeamTreehouse’s techdegree – which is an online course designed to give you the skills and develop the portfolio that will give you a new career in Front End Web development in 6-9 months. I have been with TeamTreehouse since July 2015 and doing it in my spare time. To use a metaphor, I liken my programming experience to a romantic relationship –  I felt like I was ‘dating’ coding – I was fooling around with it, taking each day as it comes but I still had my main squeeze which was my ‘teaching’ career. But taking the Techdegree was like putting the shiny rock on coding’s finger and saying “Front End Web Design – will you marry me?” I was ready to up my commitment and I go on to the new chapter on my life!


I am currently going over again “How To Make a Website” taught by the wonderful Nick Pettit and here’s a super quick summary of what I went over today…

  • I learnt why ‘Normalize.css’ was important as it makes browsers render all elements more consistently and in line with modern standards. 
  • I learnt the “wrapper div” technique – Many websites use a “wrapper div” to center the page in the middle of the site and contain the layout to a specific width. I learnt how to use auto margins and the max-width property to center our page and contain it.
  • I also learnt how important it was to design sites with the ‘mobile-first’ philosophy. Nowadays more people access the Internet via mobile and portable devices than by desktops. When designing websites it’s best to start with a mobile layout and then scale up rather than the other way around.


Although I did this video course 10 months ago, because as part of the Techdegree there was a graded assignment that I had to hand in based on this course, I swallowed my pride decided to go through it all over again. But honestly I was amazed at 2 things that I had discovered when I returned to the video course:

  1. How much I had learnt in 10 months. When I first started this video course I had never typed a word of code before in my life. It was almost like Nick was talking another language. I was as baffled as the poor shopkeeper that I was desperately trying to speak Portuguese to when I went on holiday last year. But now I had a greater grasp of what he was talking about and it was thrilling!
  2. How much I had forgotten. Although it is a very basic course, there was so much advanced techniques in that video, I was scrambling to get my notebook out. It taught me that if I do not practice what I am learning, the knowledge will be like that Bob Dylan song ‘blowing in the wind’.

The most important lesson that I learnt was not to be afraid to go over material that I had thought I had learnt. Sometimes going back is the very thing that will help you go forward! (Tweet that!)

Let me know your thoughts! Leave comments below or tweet at me!




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