A few words about you, who are you?
Hey, I’m Lina. I’ve been studying computer science in Leipzig for almost 6 years and I’m about to graduate with a Master’s degree. Besides my studies I have already tried various things ranging from Mac and iOS development to WordPress and development of autonomous vehicles. For some time now, I have been working on educational science and computer science, and I am also writing my master’s thesis on this subject.
In my free time I like to travel a lot. At the beginning of this year I bought a small car and converted it into a camper van. When I’m not cruising through Europe, I enjoy Leipzig and do various sports.
When and how did you get interested in coding?
I only started programming during my studies. I really just stumbled into it, without any idea what computer science and programming actually is. At school I was good at math and I wanted to study something application-oriented. Getting started with Java in the first semester was not that easy and I was on the verge of giving up my studies several times. Luckily, I didn’t really know what else to do and so I forced myself through the first two semesters. Since then I had projects in and beside my studies that motivated me to carry on.
What do you like most about coding ?
The feeling when you’ve been stuck with a problem for a long time and finally solved it is unbeatable. In addition, I always learn something new when programming. Especially with private projects, I often get the chance to try out a technology that I have stumbled across before. For me it is incredibly satisfying to be able to constantly evolve by learning new things.
What is your favorite project right now?
My favorite project (for now) is my master’s thesis. I’m working on a development environment that will allow students to get to know the world of machine learning without any prior programming knowledge needed. What I like most about it is that I work in an interdisciplinary way and can also deal with the educational sciences in addition to computer science topics such as machine learning. I try to write regularly about my master thesis on my blog.
What would you like to try/learn/know in the future?
As mentioned above, I am a bit of a learning junkie and therefore the list is long. When it comes to technologies and co. I learn in a very “uncontrolled” way, depending on what I need right now. Because of my master thesis, I am currently expanding my knowledge in the field of machine learning. I would also like to learn more about Woodworking to further optimize my camper van. In the area of sports I am preparing for my first small triathlon and would like to do a surf course this year.
What was your biggest challenge as a programmer so far?
As I got thrown into the world of programming during my studies, the last years have been characterized by doing a lot of things at the same time. The result was that I was absolutely overwhelmed with my tasks last year and had to cut back. Since then it has been clear to me that it is so important not to constantly compare yourself with the skills of other developers. Everyone learns at their own pace and has started with different prerequisites. Your own progress is what counts and is the only thing you should have an eye on. I also failed for the first time in my life. The fact that failure in programming, like everywhere else, is somehow part of it and not a disgrace, was an important realization.
Do you have role models?
I don’t. However, I draw the inspiration that others might get from role models from groups like the Code Girls. It’s always motivating and inspiring to get together with all these great women.
Can you recommend a book / podcast / tutorial / movie or event?
Due to my master thesis I have read countless tutorials on Machine Learning for beginners. So many are incomplete, wrong or too mathematical. My absolute favorite is Machine Learning for Everyone. It is comprehensive and entertaining. I highly recommend checking it out, if you want to learn more about this topic.