There were a couple of driving forces that pushed me into learning web technologies:
1. My job is not going to last forever. After being asked (or rather told) to relocate to corporate headquarters last year and declining, they hired my replacement. I am still working, doing some of the technical things that are specialized to my area of expertise, but my days are numbered with that company. Most positions that would be suitable for my current skills require 80-100% travel - been there, done that (11 years of it), and lost a lot of my personal life in the process. So I am going to do my best to avoid taking on another job that involves extensive travel. And since I am not in a position to retire (damn, WHEN will Miguel win the BIG lottery instead of these little jackpots?!), I need to learn new skills in order to continue working from home.
2. After Miguel's accident (near-electrocution and third-degree burns), he turned his focus to finishing his apartment in order to rent it. And since Miguel also started cooking more, we decided to turn our spare room upstairs into a B&B as well. Which meant a web-site in order to promote the sites.
Computer programming and anything that makes me think logically has always interested me. I have written computer programs before, and currently use my logic skills in trouble-shooting and creating data queries and custom reports. This is my true passion, and web-programming is a natural progression for me.
So I signed up with an online educational site, where I am taking various courses leading to certification. I just need one more course in order to be certified in web technologies. I have started the certification program for web programming, and concurrently I will tackle web design certification.
After my first course of html, I created this very basic site:
A little css added to html and I was able to make it a little prettier:
And now I am coding in html 4.01 strict and lots of css for presentation. I redesigned all our pages and added several more new ones. Here's how the homepage for our site looks today:
It's interesting to look back and see how far I've come in just a few months. I need a lot more practice and education but this feels good and I enjoy it. I am working on the computer almost every evening (after working on it all day for work), but I am seeing progress so it is worth it. I hope this will lead to something new. Fingers crossed!