“Three words to describe my childhood are only: poor, destitute, and disadvantaged. I jokingly say that I have poor luck in my “ability to reincarnate”, so I have to work harder.”
“The scariest encounter for me was mental health. I’ve never been in a place where I needed so much help. So much that I felt embarrassed, …”
“For the record, I failed more than won. But here’s the thing: When the time comes, it will hit you to realize how those lowest moments turned out to be the most precious things that occurred. Things will get worse before it gets better. You just need to believe that.”
“They use the term career path because that’s what a career should look like. We have a destination to reach and must figure out how to get there. But unlike using Google Map - where we can type in the location and retrieve the route, life is way more complicated.”
“So never limit yourself to one option; just try many things. It will help your vision open up and deeper…”
It’s edgy to work on what you’re suck at, but it forces you to grow. The story of Duy, co-founder of Techie Story - The Untold
Techie had the opportunity to talk with Mr. Dzung Nguyen - software engineer at DoorDash, currently living and working in Japan.
Mrs. Cuc Doan - Software Engineer, former Google Intern. I backed to college when my son went to kindergarten (part 2)
Mrs. Cuc Doan - Software Engineer, former Google Intern. I backed to college when my son went to kindergarten (part 1)
Meet Thanh Pham (again) - Engineering Manager at Dwarves Foundation, and read about what did he do with this new position.
“In the data industry, having a background in Computer Science is certainly a bit better. But there are lots of people who don’t have a tech background, and they are ready to live and die with the profession…”
Meet Tu (Tech Recruiter) and Khuong (Lead Designer) - Cofounders of Thankdy, and hear their story about an unique product idea that can connect people together during the pandemic.
The age of 18 is an important milestone for us. A lot of exams, memories, and changes all came up that year. When I’m looking back to our high school years, the moments of 12th grade are permanently imprinted clearly. That’s when I had to answer the question, “Who will I become in the future?”. I had big and small dreams in my pocket, full of sizes, for example, being a Nasa engineer, studying abroad, or speaking English like native people just for show-off purposes. To be honest, these were too far from reality. I always have fallback options if the main one is impossible. Remembering the coding lessons in secondary school, they are the most exciting knowledge for me to master. I love to solve the problem by logics, not learning by heart.
Meet Khang Pham - Machine Learning Engineer at Snapchat and author of the popular ML System Design Course on Educative.io
This story was originally published by our partner Women Techmakers Hanoi
This story was originally published by our partner Women Techmakers Hanoi
This story was originally published by our partner Women Techmakers Hanoi
Chap 2: Indie Hacker - The story from passion
How to stop pasting JSON strings, JWT tokens, or sensitive data to random websites online? Since the start of Covid-19, Tony Dinh has turned DevUtils.app from a passion project to solve his own problems to a revenue-generating side gig with a massive opportunity for further development. Today, his story shared with Techie will walk you through his notable yet humble journey as a software engineer, with a huge scope into his personal experience.
Back in 2014-2015, most of my classmates followed the Mobile career path as Android Developer. You know, Mac devices were unaffordable 💸
My colleague or even my family haven’t known I am LGBT yet. I was “straight”, but fall in love with “him” at the university. I don’t intentionally hide them, and I just keep it a secret. Some tacitly know, so I don’t have to embarrass anymore. I nearly decided to take a police examination, but you know an LGBT police is a little bit weird! My family has stayed in the Central, so almost them prefer their children to work as doctors, officers, or teachers. I didn’t like them, so I even try to fail the exam. It’s funny, isn’t it? I started university one year behind my friends. When applying to FPT software university, my parents said:
Part 2: When a boy became a Dad
Part 1: Dad wasn’t born to be a father. This is also the first time Dad has been a father.
Getting the first step to university, I just knew how to code “Hello world” while my friends from gifted school have done lots of things. They look talented comparing to us! So I had to put great effort to catch up with the pace. However, I got the General Chemistry subject three times. Luckily, for the third time, she was so bored with me that she closed her eyes and let me pass.
Don’t worry! People sometimes feel lost, too. When our works fall into a saturation state, we see nothing’s too interesting to learn and try. Then we can’t level up ourselves. That’s the point of working on different or new things. In my opinion, we find it easy to get lost after getting married and in that Covid pandemic 😷.
It may be hard to believe, but it was until I got a degree in economics and got a first position related to making products for a tech company, that I knew what IT was like. At that stage, I was always overwhelmed, full of confusing terms about Big Data, NLP, Chatbot, Speech Processing technology,… running around in my head. To understand the product, I had to sit around with the devs, try to listen to everyone, and then translate into my own business language in the most “real” way 🤣🤣
Lam Do - software engineer @Facebook
Tham Le - my journey to becoming a female software engineer
Back in time, I was so introverted in a new company. I couldn’t talk to anyone during the first month. Fortunately, a senior engineer gave me an opportunity to work on a project, leave me feedback, and mentor me wholeheartedly. Then I started to get on well with the whole team. I must be depressed if there was no change!
My life is weird. Never have I ever got the chance to do things straightforward. It took many turns before leading me to become a lecturer.
“”Straightforward” is how I describe the life here. They’ll come at you with no sugarcoating.”
“It was the 2nd year of college, then I decided to drop Medical school to pursue IT.”
“It began with the love for photography. I used to do hip-hop dancing and dived in that kind of art playground. Photography later then came inevitably. My sister also happened to have a studio. I was clearly supported and inspired by it. But when I started making a decision for career orientation, photography seems not to have many opened doors. So I picked another related field, graphic design. I was a bit greedy when I believed I could handle two majors at once. It’s a risky move, but I glad I did it. After graduation, I got to know many friends from business, enlightening me on business and economy insights. It developed my interest in this field. That was 2012 or 2013, as I remembered, the time when Uber had just set their foot in the market. I received an offer to develop a startup community in Vietnam when I was still in the US. I figured it’s best to do something to learn more about it. The more you scare something, the more it can teach you. That mindset led me back to Vietnam and started my ride with startup. I was hoping to utilize the product development skills and technology to uplift startup projects within the first two years and going divestment for the next investor.
“SRE can be considered as an implementation of DevOps, but the concept will be a bit different. We maintain and develop the infrastructure to involve every team to work base on a mutual mechanism. It’s about setting up the working culture, internal tools, and environments so developers can operate the job themselves. For example, if the work happens in Flutter, we’ll take care of the CI/CD, pipeline, or infrastructure preparation.
“I first realized my interest in computing since high school. We were learning Pascal at the time. Next thing I know, I was chosen to compete in an IT contest and for my very first prize in life. Da Nang University of Science and Technology was my choice to pursue further in this field. But the truth? I didn’t have much chance for hands-on experience in the first two years of uni. I was eager to seek more real things, such as Robocon, with the whole competition and teamwork collaboration. My university specifically asked for both graduation thesis and internship certification, so I started to go for an internship from my 3rd year. Diving in a working environment when you’re still a student brings many advantages if you’re proactive enough. Because you’re allowed to make mistake. Ask, learn, practice, and repeat. Usually, once our probation performance is outstanding, people are likely to offer a full-time position because they take you as a good asset for the team. That opportunity happened to me. However, the study schedule was quite overloaded. I must postpone the internship to finish the schoolwork. 2 years later, I stepped out of university and got my first job as a fresher developer based in Da Nang.
“Let’s just say my major and what I do has nothing in common. I graduated as an import-export bachelor, spent the next 6 months in an international school as an Academic Assistant, then nailed at Coinhako as a Customer Service. Weird, I know. I wondered what it would like to experience a startup model, and I found Coinhako amongst the zone. Coinhako was a whole different industry, a tech company for bitcoin and cryptocurrency. Coinhako was a small team by the time I came, which allowed me to touch my hands on many roles and define what I do best. I developed a strong passion for IT because I admire how software engineers can turn any idea into tech products. It’s what truly amazed me. I used to try getting on the IT major when I was in university, but I couldn’t. And Coinhako was a chance for me to step in this field as another role.
“I never thought I would have immersed myself in IT. I was more tempted by mechanical engineering. But the two were my consideration because I wanted to prove that girls can be bold and work as hard as guys. It didn’t happen easily. My mom refused to let me go for it. She even locked me up in the house just because I insisted on apply for Bach Khoa. We were having a bad time back then. Things only improved when I managed to succeed in the entrance test with the highest score in the scholarship application list.
“When I was in high school, information technology has already been famous. Surrounded by too many alumni that chose to go for IT and me myself had developed a passion toward the field. Hence, it was a great motivation to pursue IT.
“I soon realize that English is only a tool to succeed, so I took a 6-month certificate in administration then heading straight to companies for internships, without the help from my university. I got accepted into an export-import agent of Germany - where I learnt how to set up the paperwork, meeting booking & other administrative tasks. I spent the next five years working for a startup in online marketing until I fully got the hang of how to operate that field. Then I switched to an event startup and started to build up things as a supervisor. After many ups and downs, I moved to a Singapore Tech company as an HRM.
“I chose programming because I didn’t want my life to be programmed.
“Moving the title from Back-end to Front-end was pretty a struggle. I started my career at the point where those frameworks like Angular or React JS were still under the radar. Heuristic approach is challenging. Everything is new and you don’t know where to take the first step. Plus, the trade-off. I’ve decided to reduce the income in exchange for training. Besides a whole new surrounding, embarking on the Front-end journey faces some specific hurdles. UI Style is one of them. I didn’t have a sense of art back then. So whenever I finished making one, I gave it to the seniors and asked for their comment. I did it repeatedly until things got better. Another point which I found very lucky is even I was working with many youngsters, never have I seen there was a single conflict between us. They were supportive and opened to back up, which is why I’ve been so grateful.
“By the time I got out of university, all of my peers decide to step into the big playgrounds, such as FPT software or other big firms based in Quang Trung Software City. After I contacted to a senior for advice, he suggested me to re-consider my competence and to assure whether or not should I join a big company. It could be a vast ocean where I find it hard to find a stable orientation. I could be struggling there. Working for a small team can be a better idea. Although the income and benefit might not be appealing as first; I might get to work in different fields. So I decided to drop myself in a Vietnam-based company which their main focus in React Native. React Native was only opened-source from Facebook about a year at the time. And it was a real breaking change for me.
“I started differently from others. More like reversing to what people are doing. I pick up and master the skillset first, then I turn back to figure what it really was. It’s like starting things from the instinct, then validate it later. But thanks to that, I got to master things that other designers find it hard to. It’s the mindset and the sense of what’s right and wrong.
“My first job landed in a Vietnam company, of which the client was from Australia. My PM was an Indian, and he led me through the Mobile platform. After that, I stepped in FPT Software as a Java Web Developer. Due to the market demand, FPT decided to launch their Mobile team in Da Nang. They sought for the key members with a solid foundation in Mobile, and I was one of the lucky selectees. That’s how my path with Mobile began. Software changes fast, really. But I specifically don’t care much on which technology is “better”. I approach things with an opened mind, which means to research the news and update on the current one constantly. That’s also the motto I prefer my team to follow.”
“There was some change at my university orientation back then. Also, when I work on a product, although I know there is something wrong with it, I didn’t know how to fix it in a UI-oriented way. So I thought Front-end would best fit my will. It’s related to UI anyway, isn’t it?
“Back in college, I had 2 options. One was to follow Chemistry, and the other was IT. But after full consideration, IT seemed to bring more chances to earn a better living. But there’s one thing I always tell the juniors, chasing after money is not a wrong choice. It’s a solid motivation. But other than that, I hope they can find other targets to make the job more meaningful. It doesn’t have to be a huge one, but it should be inspiring enough to push them to grow. At this moment, I’m happy with what I do. Build useful tools that bring impact to others. Of course, I still make money out of it, but it’ll be more fun once you know your work matters to people.