My Web3 _BuildSpace weekend 🦄
Dipping my toes into web3 development!
Today’s post will involve my reflecting on my experience building some ethereum and Solana projects on Buildspace ! I know a lot of people are in a similar position to me and are finding ways to pivot into web3, and buildspace has been a great help to many people so I am documenting my experience to help others too! It will focus less on what I built, but more on how the Buildspace works!🚀
But… Here is what I did build
I spent this weekend building the following buildspace projects:
- Build a web3 app with solidity + ethereum smart contracts
- Mint your own NFT collection & ship a web3 app to show them off
- Build a web3 app on Solana with React and Rust
- Create your own mini-turn based NFT game (To be completed this week!)
I have very little experience with coding but I followed the recommendations of the buildspace team to complete the following courses so that I would be prepared for the buildspace projects📚.
- Scrimba - HTML & CSS📚
- Scrimba - Java📚
- Scrimba - Learn React📚
- CryptoZombies - First 15 lessons🧟📚
- Blockchain Basics📺
The Scrimba and Cryptozombies🧟 courses were invaluable and helped me so much to grasp a greater understanding of what was happening during the courses. Especially for someone who has little experience in programming, it taught me so much more than I expected in an amazing way. I have tried to learn programming before using resources like CodeAcademy and such, but I never really enjoyed the learning experience. Scrimba changed that. If you don’t know how Scrimba works, I recommend that you go check it out just to see the power behind it! 🔌
I am signing up for a Pro membership to take their Frontend Developer Career Path course once I’ve completed the final buildspace project and taken a small break. 🏖️
CryptoZombies🧟 covers a good portion of solidity simply. Solidity coding differs quite a lot from the standard web2 coding languages, so the lessons were invaluable in my web3 education because I would have had no idea if I had just jumped into the buildspace projects.
I don’t want to spend too much time on the prerequisites, but if you lack coding skills, I recommend taking these courses before jumping into buildspace❗ It is possible to start the buildspace projects without it, but I can’t imagine the experience as valuable because you might not understand what is happening. Instead, you might just blindly copy and paste, which is not the same as coding yourself.
I am based in the GMT timezone, so the kick-off was later in the afternoon, around 5 pm, so I opted to skip the live kick-off session. The kick-off session is the only live aspect of this project, but it is also recorded so that you can watch it later📺 . The recorded session is usually released within 2 hours after the live session, so I just watched it during my break!🍜
The project material does unlock 2 hours before the stated time, though, so I started my first project (NFT collection🚀) at 3:30 pm once I realised I could build earlier, and I thought the extra time would have been helpful for myself :).
Initially, I preferred doing the web3 app project, but that started at 8 pm, so I opted to start with the NFT collection🚀 since it was already released. By the time I was halfway through the project, that feeling had melted away and instead, I was in awe of how I submitted my contract to the blockchain network!🤩 In saying this, if future cohorts are released similarly to mine, where the NFT project is first, by all means, definitely give it a go because I was so glad that I started with that one!
Straight away, you can see the informal manner in which the project is written, but don’t let that fool you, as the quality is sky-high! I love the everyday language used as it reminds you that behind every computer is a person and that the buildspace group are a bunch of humans trying to help us pivot into web3. We are all degens at heart 💖
Project Content 📚
All of the content within buildspace is explained in great detail that every line of code you add has a reason for why it is there, sometimes along with a link for further information📚! It couldn’t have been simpler! That’s why it is possible to skip the prerequisites and complete most of the project, but you will be googling a few things, especially if you have no experience with React.
One of the critical aspects of Buildspace is the discord community👪, especially during the initial kick-offs and the following few days. The discord server is very active for each project, and you will be able to get a lot of support from your peers or help them! I would filter through the messages as many of my questions were answered by searching through the filter. It saved me a lot of time!⏳
Another critical aspect about Buildspace is that there are many optional add-on scenarios described within each project. For example, the NFT collection project involved the following optional tasks:
- Create a loading bar whilst the mint is buffering ✨
- A score for mints/total mints ✨
- Clean up the UI✨
Along with many other tasks… Each of these optional tasks is a great way to showcase your skills✨; even if you aren’t entirely confident, it is worth trying. I couldn’t complete half of the optional add-ons, but I attempted them and still learnt a lot whilst trying them.
I decided to document a few notes about specific solidity code that I found interesting throughout the project. I would try to explain it to myself in the simplest way possible to teach a 5-year-old. It is a great way to learn actively, and it reinforced the ideas within my head instead of speeding through the course.🧠
Buildspace mentions that each project will take around 5-10 hours to complete, dependent on your knowledge and skill. This was roughly accurate for me, as I took about 6 hours for the NFT collection, then a few hours for the web3 app because I already understood a lot of the content from the NFT collection, but these times also included breaks! The Solana course took me longer than the other two because I kept having more breaks, and I was getting a bit burnt-out, so I took a break and headed out for the games night with my friends.🕹️
I let the Solana project roll over to Monday and Tuesday because I had already absorbed a lot of content from the previous two projects, and I didn’t want to overwork myself. Burn-out🔥 is real bois n gorls, remember to take a break from the computer and get some fresh air⛰️! These projects aren’t going anywhere, and it is much more important to care for your health. That is the medic in me coming out, haha, but swiftly moving on….
NFT & Alumni opportunities ✨
Receiving the NFT is a very fulfilling experience. Oh wait, did I not mention that you receive an NFT too when you complete their course? Based on your cohort, you will receive an NFT with your cohort name and a # number showing how fast you completed it. Here is a little peek of mine below :).
These NFTs can be used as an online credential to display your web3 skills, which seems to be a key trend in the past couple of months, especially with other web3 protocols such as Rabbithole.gg. Not only are the NFTs cool af, but they also act as a resume and could be your bridge to web3 development! They are non-transferable and live on the blockchain, so a screenshot means nothing. Screenshot it, I dare you. 😈
This is one of the many perks of NFTs, so now employers will be able to recognise if something is real or not! They also grant you access to the #alumni section within the Buildspace server, which is an excellent way to network with other people, and it is something I am going to (try) and keep an eye on. There are too many projects and servers to keep updated within web3; that’s why I put “(try)”.
This was a fantastic experience and has only fueled my love for web3! A big thank you to Buildspace for their top-tier projects❤️. I recommend these projects to anyone who wants to dip their toes into the water of being a web3 developer or a developer newbie like me and wants to understand how web3 development works.
It also felt surreal to even build on a testnet, I can’t imagine the feeling when I will eventually deploy a project to the mainnet, but it is also a day I can not wait for! I was a bit time-constrained this time around, but I will return to these courses in the future once I have further developed my coding skills.💻
For now, I will aim to complete the NFT Game project🎮, but then I will probably move back to scrimba to build my foundation of coding skills. As much as I can’t wait to dive into web3, I want to build a good foundation before diving further into solidity.