Good2Read: Build Enterprise-Scale JavaScript Applications with TypeScript

The new TypeScript language from Microsoft, a superset of JavaScript, gives developers help in building JavaScript and HTML5 web applications.  Dan Wahlin takes you on a tour of TypeScript, highlighting key features such as built-in type support and the ability to define classes, which can make your code more reusable and easier to maintain and let you catch coding errors sooner.

View article…

Good2Read: HTML5 Now: Getting More Through Polyfills

The most nagging issue with making the leap to HTML5 is that most of us have no choice but to support a variety of older browsers that have little or no support for the most useful new APIs. The thought of adopting a new Web technology conjures up nightmares of cross-browser inconsistencies, unmaintainable branching code, browser sniffing and a host of other problems. However, there’s an underappreciated technique that can entirely mitigate those problems for certain new features of HTML5 and still allow you to develop against the new APIs as though all your users had upgraded their browsers overnight: polyfills.

View Article…

Good2Read: How to Build Your LinkedIn Network

The other day I read an article by   about building a social network for your business titled How to “Build Your LinkedIn Network“.  He writes from the perspective of a business about the importance of making face-to-face connections but also on how important it is to have a presence in online networks such as LinkedIn.

When it comes to your personal brand, I believe you should think of yourself as a business.  Building a brand for a business is critical to being successful, but I would argue that it is just as critical to build a personal brand as well.  This is of most importance when you have a number of years of experience under your belt, and have a proven track record to show for.  John Tabita has a set of steps to take when it comes to LinkedIn:

  1. Join LinkedIn
  2. Fill out your profile
  3. Join some groups
  4. Offer helpful advice
  5. Watch the clients roll in

All these steps match directly with the steps necessary to have your professional online presence.  Step number five would be more like “Watch the recruiters roll in”, since having the right experience properly presented could land you your next job.  Hard to believe? I have gotten my last two jobs courtesy of LinkedIn.  Recruiters are using LinkedIn just as much as they are using any other job site like Monster or Dice.  Having the right keywords can land your profile in someone’s search without you having to apply to any jobs.

The other good thing about LinkedIn is that it gives you access to other people’s experience.  If you have a dream job or know what’s your next step career wise, search LinkedIn for that position’s title.  Not only do you get a snapshot as to the “how-to” in gettting that job, but you also have someone’s name to go along with it.  If you feel adventurous, contact the person and ask for advice, most people would love to share their story with you.  Try to find people in the same city you live in buy them coffee.  Building a network offline (face-to-face) is just as good as an online one. 

Several years ago when I was getting established in the IT industry, a headhunter gave me the best advice career wise.  He said “talk to everybody that is willing to talk to you, the more you talk about your experience the better you will get at selling yourself”.  That has paid great dividends in the long run.  The concept is simple, you are a product hiring managers are thinking about buying.  You need to polish your message to make it compelling for the prospective buyer to decide in your favor.  The more you talk about what you have been up, the better you will be at coming up with the perfect message to sell others.  You will be less nervous when it comes to deliver your message to the recruiter and/or hiring manager (especially when it counts), and you’ll be more fluid in your delivery having practiced your speech so many times.  I can give you a 2 minute speech about my 15+ career without hitting  a single “um”.  I’ve done it so many times that I’ve internalized the message.  I can also give you a 10-20 minute speech of all projects I’ve worked with specific details (details that accent what I like and what I do well).  I have done it so much I don’t have to prepare for it.  I am also very comfortable talking about it so it helps in breaking the ice (specially since most people start an interview with “Tell me about what your experience”).

In the digital age, you can’t count on your résumé to be the only way to tell others what you have been up to career wise.  An online presence is critical to establish your brand and making yourself visible to those looking for someone with your experience and skills.  Having a complete and well designed profile can be the bridge to your dream job.  Spending a couple of hours making sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date is the best thing you can do for your career.