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I agree, or at least that is my perception. As a female dev I'm always more worried about a false positive, being hired for a job I'm not suitable for because of the diversity factor. I have found women sometimes get further in the interview process because they are given more second chances. My advice is use your female name.

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I strongly agree with the work-life balance. When the add explicitly states where the office is, the expected the work hours, the number of holiday days, the career development support, etc I'm much more excited to apply. There is nothing worse than applying to a job that is going to be a transit commute to the middle of nowhere. Also when they offer things like relocation support and visa lawyers, its pretty wonderful.

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If you want a good alternative to the GoF book try Head First Design Patterns. I findit much more approachable and much more enjoyable to read. http://www.amazon.com/Head-First-Design-Patterns-Freeman-ebo...

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The best interviews have been interviews where I have been warned ahead of time what to expect. Ie in the phone screening interview I was given an informal hint that I should add unit tests to my programming task (the next step of the interview process). Or the time I was told that my in-person interview would include a hello-world with a certain IDE and a certain language (which I had no previous experience in). I felt comfortable because I knew what to expect and I could prepare ahead of time. I think it also showed I was listening and I was willing to learn new things.

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I need somewhere between 7-8 hours of sleep. I don't drink coffee and I exercise 3 times a week. I find sleep matters more in the long run. I can function on 6 hours, but after a few months I'm burned out and I end up catching whatever cold/flu is going around.

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Watch Delta Dawn, its a great video on paddle boarding the Colorado. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ot3059iwiWo

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Finished: Where I Belong, Alan Doyle. Light Christmas reading written by the lead singer of Great Big Sea. I recommend it to anyone who grew up in a small town!

Reading: Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture, Martin Fowler So far so good. The first bit is overview, good contrasting examples of when to use what pattern. I've slowed down now that I've hit the actual patterns.

Planning: Clean Code, Robert Martin. Recommended by a coworker.

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I think some times it can be your co-workers. Write a script for the service team to automate some manual task, talk to QA about something they always have to manually setup - skunk work projects are a great way of delighting your co-workers.

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I totally agree with the idea of having a style guide. How do you educate non-technical people (customers) on style guides? Style guides seem technical in nature so I'm not too sure how to succinctly explain to a customer that UI/UX decisions should be based around guidelines instead of "what feels good"

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I took a job where I was the 4th employee at a start-up. The biggest selling point was they were willing to hire me despite my lack of web-dev experience. Coming from a .NET background, I had never used PHP until my interview. The interview involved setting up a MVC application and my interviewers were able to answer my technical questions succinctly. I realized they would be great people to learn from. I think the most important thing about hiring first employees is making sure everyone works well together.

I found the company thru craigslist, I'm not too sure if that applies to all cities, but Vancouver developer jobs show up regularly on CL.

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So you were looking for work in a field where you had little experience. That makes a lot of sense. I suspect it's a common answer with less experienced employees.

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