Posted on Sun 24 April 2016

Looking for an iOS development mentor

I've been learning iOS development for about 2-2.5 years now. I started with an Objective-C course on Treehouse, then started building my first product: an app to rate your mood in Exist. These days Exist for iOS has grown into a proper mobile client for Exist, and is almost at parity with our Android app. It's live on the App Store and gets regular updates.

I recently took the jump into Swift with Treehouse's Swift course, and started building an iOS client for our new bookmarking service, Larder, in Swift.

Even with this experience under my belt, not to mention various side projects in various stages of development, I'm still struggling. My progress is a lot slower than I'd like. My familiarity with Apple's APIs is quite limited. My understanding of general programming principles and best practices is emerging very slowly (Objective-C was my first introduction to programming ever).

I really want to get better, and not get so stuck that I want to give up on a regular basis. Although my co-founder Josh helps a lot when I'm stuck, he doesn't have iOS-specific experience, so I often have to figure out nonsense like Swift compiler crashes by myself.

So I've decided what I need is a mentor, to speed up my progress and to help me better understand what I'm doing. I'm after someone who can spend maybe an hour a week with me, answering questions I'm stuck on, helping me understand iOS specifics that I can't quite get my head around, and maybe even going over my code with me to help me understand how I could be implementing things better. Because I'm still learning, and I'm self-taught, there are a lot of things I do where I just don't know any better. I'm frustrated with the cycle of googling and making progress a line at a time, and I think the missing link is having a friend and mentor who can gently guide me down the right paths. I know there are a lot of developers with experience and an eagerness to give back to the community by helping beginners, so consider this my call for your help.

I'm looking for someone with lots of iOS experience, lots of patience, and familiarity with Swift. I also create all of my layouts in code, so it'd be a bonus if you were comfortable with that.

If that's you, and you're willing to spend up to an hour per week helping me improve, hit me up on Twitter or via email. If you know someone who might be interested, please share this blog post with them. Location doesn't matter if you're comfortable sharing code during a video call, but if you're in Melbourne we could also meet in person.


Update: Just to be super clear, I'm not looking for a Slack team to join, an IRC channel, or any other kind of community. I've tried those before, and they're not really for me. I'm looking for a one-on-one, ongoing relationship with an experienced developer who's interested in offering their expertise and guidance.

P.S. I make some stuff you might like: Exist, a personal analytics app to help you understand your life, and Larder, a bookmarking app for developers.

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