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Martin, Lead Consultant of Warnett Consulting Ltd discusses how to make good use of time in a pandemic when work is scarce.

The desire to improve... What to do in a pandemic with little work?

The simple answer is read, take online courses, listen to / watch podcasts.
In reality, people take me time because mental health is far, far more important and rightly so.

So how should someone approach learning?

  • The first issue is to not stress about not knowing everything.
    Looking at the Java eco-system alone, there is so much out there, you simply can't know everything. It's impossible from a time management in the first instance and anyone claiming to know everything is blagging it.

  • The second issue is to diversify your skillset.
    Learning something completely different can broaden your knowledge base and even make you understand your core skills better by comparing and contrasting different approaches. Diversifying also means that you can offer skills and services to clients you may not have thought of before.

  • A third and not insignificant issue
    You can look to find current trends and develop skills, even if basic.

To that end, WCL are improving (as in, gaining some) Python development skills. Why? There are also several reasons for that.
1) Son has had a brief module in it at school and I'm quite frankly damned if I'm going to let him know more than me on, well, anything.
2) Python seems to be an excellent language, fairly easy to learn.
3) Python as well as other language like R seem heavily used in Data Analysis, an emerging field if job boards are anything to go by. So for me, it's an opportunity to learn a new language and potentially open new opportunities.

How to learn a new language?
There are plenty of resources available, both online and offline. The key for me is always to look to enhance any tutorials rather than blindly typing code in. The blindly typing code in app means you experience the results without learning or understanding; see the old approach of typing in ZX81 games from magazines, only to find a typo somewhere which you can never find.
As a result, a new project has been created on Github

Examples will be created and added into separate directories over time.

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