To improve yourself, you need to be driven to learn. Don’t expect someone else to motivate you.
GoGet was a wonderful opportunity that came up and the NEXT Academy (formerly Code Division) bootcamp was a great stepping stone that really gave me many useful skills to help drive GoGet to a better future.
Name: Tai Fung Wei Tan, CTO of GoGet.my
Hometown: Kuala Lumpur
More about Fung:
- Worked as a Product Developer at YTL Communications Sdn Bhd (Yes 4G) prior to joining the bootcamp
- Graduated as an electrical engineer so has some amount of experience with low level coding, hardware description languages, assembly and some C++
- Dabbled in some web and mobile development out of interest, and even took on some simple freelance projects over the years
- " My code was always very tacky and unstructured. I guess that is what happens when you learn things yourself. While it may be good to be independent, sometimes seeking professional training is much more effective."
How did you come across the bootcamp and what prompted you to join it?
Back then, the coding bootcamp was conducted at MaGIC. At that time, the GoGet team was also working with MaGIC. Our CEO stumbled upon the coding bootcamp and forwarded it to me. I signed up almost instantly after reading the program description. The timing was perfect too as I was preparing to leave my previous job and join GoGet.
Did you finish the bootcamp with any notable changes to yourself? And how did that help with your work with Goget?
I made many amazing friends, learned a lot about web development, and even more things about myself.
Back then, we were building GoGet's next version with VLT on top of Ruby on Rails. So learning the same framework at the bootcamp gave me a much better understanding of what we were developing, as well as allowed me to contribute to some of the codes myself. The bootcamp also trained me to think like a developer.
I can now better manage my team and am capable of planning our technology roadmap for the future. I now also have many more mentors and friends to seek technical advices from.
How would you conclude your 9-week coding bootcamp?
The bootcamp is definitely not for the half-hearted and light-minded. One requires full attention and perseverance to get through it.Time management was a struggle for me as I had other responsibilities for GoGet. Thankfully with the support of my peers, mentors and the GoGet team, I managed to handle the responsibilities for both, though at times with very little sleep.
Some of the assigned challenges were tough, but being stuck as a group, and working together to solve them was the most challenging, yet most enjoyable time of the bootcamp. Thankfully, we had a very friendly and collaborative culture at the bootcamp. My batchmates were all extremely helpful and the mentors offered constructive guidelines to assist us in getting through the challenges.Lunches, hangouts and table tennis games were all also very enjoyable and subconsciously were integrated into our day to day routine at the bootcamp.
So, what’s next for you? Any big plans coming up?
I am bringing GoGet to where it deserves to be. GoGet has my full focus now and likely for the next year or two at the very least.
I’m contemplating about joining the bootcamp. Based on your experience, how would you advise me?
Do you want to learn a skill that will grant you the power to create all web applications that you can ever imagine? If yes, consider no further. Personally I think coding is a skill everyone should have. The web is the future, and whether or not you aspire to be a developer, I am sure you will have some interactions with the web. It's only two months, it’s fun, you make new friends, and you develop very useful skills. The way I look at it, there is no reason to not join.
Any advices on how future participants of the bootcamp can prepare for the bootcamp?
Make sure you do ALL the prep work, because jump right in to coding from day one. Although you don’t need any coding experience to join the course, you are expected to complete the prep work or you will definitely fall behind. The challenges are already tough enough. Having to catch up because you did not complete the prep work is definitely the last problem that you would want to face.To improve yourself, you need to be driven to learn. Don’t expect someone else to motivate you.
Do you have any advices for those trying to learn to code?
It may seem hard at first, but make some good friends with people who code. Don't be shy or hesitant to ask questions. Also, utilise some of the great online learning tools available and you will be surprised with what you can achieve. Everyone should give coding a real try. Don’t give up so easily, and don’t give up without trying.
Do you have a role model? Who is he/she and why do you look up to him/her?
Of course. Francesca Chia, the CEO of GoGet.my. She is extremely driven and is a very compassionate person. Her drive really rubs off on those around her and she is the main reason why GoGet has its success today. Being around her has driven me to work hard, to keep learning and to be the best I can.
Do you have any shout outs?
To Master Josh Teng, thanks for making the NEXT Academy bootcamp a reality. I have learned so much and certainly had a ton of fun despite the difficulty of the bootcamp. None of these would have been possible without you. To my follow peers and mentors at NEXT Academy, I miss you guys and wish we had more time together. It was a great two months. Let's meet up soon!To Francesca Chia, CEO of GoGet.my, you are the main driving force behind GoGet, and without you I would never have left my job to embark on this journey.To Hong Su-Queen, my wonderful girlfriend, thanks for always believing in me and supporting me all this while. My will to keep going forward, especially during the hard stressful times, would likely have broken down long ago if not for you.