[Edu-sig] BI about Code Schools

kirby urner kirby.urner at gmail.com
Fri Apr 29 15:20:50 EDT 2016

As some of you know, I've been studying the emerging market
for "code schools", not an entirely new phenomenon, but
spiraling through a next iteration around now.

Why am I interested?

Because per my LinkedIn profile, I've been working in this arena
for a long time, back to the 1980s when I was a trainer in
Lotus 1-2-3, dBase and WordPerfect.  "I go way back" as they
say, in the Way Back Machine (see archive.org).

Here's one of my recent BI-like findings, using my own neural
net (the one between my ears):  code schools are in need of
on-the-shelf prototypes that students might hack on, both alone
and together, and a logical application every code school needs
is (drum role): an on-line gift shop (with optional brick 'n mortar
add-on with point of sale devices).


Well lets take the case of many colleges and universities that
teach computer science as an academic subject.  If one drills
down, with the question, "do they eat their own dog food?" the
answer is often "no, they use Banner" or some other engine
to manage registration, enrollment, HR stuff.  They don't roll
their own and why should they?  Their business is teaching the
theory, not designing college-management applications.  Admin
is free to not bother faculty and outsource instead; buy off the
shelf stuff (COTS) if you can find it. [1]

With a code school though, it's different, at least when it comes
to those advertising "full stack engineer" as what they're hatching
(eager eggheads lining up).  Any code school worth its salt should
be turning out the very folks who write those on-line gift shop
applications, in Django, Rails or whatever.  The Shopping Cart.
Other paradigms.

"How do we know they're learning those skills and actually writing
such applications?" the hopeful employer wants to know.  We can
see their checked in code in Github that's how.  Front End, Back
End, whatever, they've hacked on a gift shop prototype, maybe not
the one running at the moment, but that's neither here nor there
(the Ux keeps changing out, as the code school rotates its look
and feel).

Some capstone project:  a gift shop in Haskell, fully operational.
Wow.  Another capstone:  a MEAN stack using TypeScript with
Angular2, classic implementation.  Again wow.  "This school has
the cheese!  We want our people from there!"

Plus every school needs a gift shop, of course, for alumni and
enrollees, partners and siblings, who want to partake of the swag.

This won't all happen overnight.  Some code schools have gift
shops already.  I'm anticipating a trend here, so we can all look
back and see if my crystal ball was cloudy or clear.


[1]  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commercial_off-the-shelf
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