And so it begins…

The first morning

Well actually, to be correct, it began 6 weeks ago. But I’ve been putting this post off way too long.

May 6, my first day of internship @ JIDOKA. I was so happy to get picked out of several other candidates and couldn’t wait to get started.

Driving over there my mind wanders to what led me to this point:

After a first successful interview, they wanted to gauge my problem solving ability. I was to be presented a math problem and had to try to solve it. I must say I was a little out of my comfort zone, math is not my forte you know.

The interview

But hey, how bad can it be? Well, Murphy had it in for me that day. My laptop refused to boot! 
What? How? Why now?! Of all the moments in time that black aluminum b*tch picks this one to play hard to get?

I tried keeping it cool, but on in the inside was boiling. My hands started to sweat and my confidence was waning… Part of me believed my chance was already blown.

After a few excruciating minutes which felt like hours, I was ready to give up. But then Dieter, my interviewer, offered me the use of his MacBook for the test, #lifesaver.

I said to myself: “Ok, I can work with this.” and eagerly started working on this math issue.
I had to find the largest prime factor of any given number. Sounds easy enough…

And I’m sure that by now you’re expecting a tale of utter awesomeness with me detailing how I tackled this and solved it in 5 minutes flat, right?
Wrong! I didn’t even now what I prime factor was to begin with! No shame in that, Dieter confided in me he didn’t know either at first. (Pfew, that made me feel a bit better.)

Fail

And so we begin devising a way to find this elusive prime factor, which sadly enough, remained out of my reach by the time the interview was over. That’s right, I didn’t solve it… came close though. I fought valiantly but in the end the dragon that is math got the best of me.

Dieter told me it wasn’t really about solving the problem, but more to get a feel about how one goes about trying to find a solution to any given problem. He assured me I didn’t do half bad.

Reboot

But I couldn’t take solace in that, especially not after hearing my competition did manage to solve the riddle. So later that day, when everybody went to sleep, I crept back behind my keyboard and started to code. And I found a different approach. I researched some tried and tested algorithms to find prime numbers and some others to find prime factors. I chose the ones that made the most sense to my mathematically challenged mind and sure enough, I managed to solve it. But I did it my way (pun intended  😉 ).

Dragon slain, the adventure continues...

So I must have done something right, because here we are.

Fast forward to today: six weeks later, I’ve just done my first demo about a new component in the project I’m working on and everybody was happy with it.
It might have been just a small cog in the machine, but still it gave me a sense of accomplishment.

Honestly I couldn’t be happier at the moment. JIDOKA truly is an amazing place to work, I’m learning so much here and I can’t wait to dive even deeper in it. The team is very supporting of me and it’s never too much for somebody to explain something. Big shout out to my buddy Koen who has been juggling his busy schedule to find the time to guide me in my first steps. He has been instrumental in bringing me to this point and I’m truly learning a lot from him.

Wrapping up

Okay, I think that about covers how I ended up at JIDOKA, so I’ll be signing of now.
I’ll hope you’ll join me next time when we’ll be talking a bit more about the project I’m working on.

Sneak peek: it’s an application, geared towards making the life our lovely HR boss easier.
Kidding aside, once it’s done, it’s going to be a tool which will save people a lot of time.

Thanks for reading and remember:

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