Areeb is a WordPress developer proficient in building themes and plugins. He can also build pages based on designs. In this week's Behind The Coding, Areeb talks to us about his journeys to faraway places, his Magento nightmares, and how his entire career as a developer happened by accident.
Ok, Areeb – first question… What are the last three things you Googled and why?
Ok, here it goes…
1 – Javed Chaudhry – He's a political columnist. I'm not a huge fan of politics, but I like his perspective.
2 – iPhone 13 launch date – I never had an iPhone and have always wanted one.
3 – The USD exchange rate - This is related to the iPhone release date. I am trying to figure out how much money I need to buy the new iPhone!
What Was the Last Big Problem You Solved at Work?
In a previous role, I developed eCommerce sites, and I was asked to build a site in Magento 2 and migrate data from Magento 1. So, taking over the store's product, customer, and order data from M1 to M2. I didn't know how to do that and spent many sleepless nights trying to figure it out.
- Really! You know, at Computan, you have teammates who do Magento migrations pretty often, right?
I know! And those guys are really impressive. It was a nightmare for me. The first time is always the toughest.
Who are three people you'd like to have dinner with at the same time, and why?
My mom, my sister, and my brother. I love our family dinners. We'd go out to Silver Spoon (a famous restaurant in his hometown), and we'd have beef chop suey. We all love it!
When was the last time you cried tears of laughter?
In 2019 I went with 18 or 19 friends to the Kaghan Valley. I spent a lot of time looking at the clear-water rivers and lakes, ice-capped mountains, and other things. At night though, we'd just sit around, talk and laugh like crazy. It was a great trip.
What do you love about coding?
Not a whole lot, really!
Really? Don't you like coding?
Hahaha… it's actually not that I don't love it, but I got into it by accident.
- Ok, now you need to elaborate.
Well, my first love was biology. I thought I was destined for agricultural sciences. That was my real passion. But God works in mysterious ways. For whatever reason, I didn't do well on some University entrance exams for biology.
My marks weren't the best, and there were also very few seats for agricultural sciences. But I got admission into computer science or business administration.
So why didn't you study business then?
Simple really. I asked a friend, 'what do you think I should do?' And he said 'Computer Science.' So here I am all these years later.
You had a friend pick your career choice for you?
Well, it was one or the other. I was leaning toward computer science anyway. In hindsight, it was the right thing to do. There are many more opportunities for computer science grads and developers than for agricultural scientists. I definitely like what being a programmer has given me. With a good-paying salary as a developer, I can spend my time enjoying the outdoors and in nature which is what I love about agricultural science. So it's been a win-win in the long run.
Ok got it. So all is well that ends well. Do you remember the first time you saw a computer?
I was at my cousin's place. I was probably 8 or 9 years old. He had a PC with Windows on it. The first thing I did was play pinball and mess around with MS Paint. One game I wanted to get good at but never did was Minesweeper.
What is something your teammates don't know about you?
I love long-distance drives and traveling.
Really? Who do you travel with?
Sometimes my family, but a lot of times I just go out on my own. Like on a day-off, I'll just drive a few hours out of town and go to different scenic areas on my own. I once traveled to the China-Pakistan border by myself. It was a great experience. It's a border you can cross by foot, actually.
What does it look like?
Here's a picture. People are lining up to cross through, sightsee, and whatnot. I'm the guy posing!