Our internship experience at Ideyatech, Inc. was one hell of an experience.
The first day that we were officially interns felt overwhelming because we were exposed to a new and different kind of environment. This is probably because most of us are introverts and we are not used to interacting with a new set of people. When we had our orientation, we all felt excited and “sabaw” at the same time because we just came from a short Christmas break. We did not really know what to do after the orientation so some of us just chilled and caught up to each other’s vacation stories.
Things got a little more interesting when we were introduced to some of the employees. They gave us a glimpse of what to expect in the internship program and immersed us in what the environment will be like. Luckily, it didn’t turn out to be a too serious kind of environment like what most of us thought it would be.
The employees are really friendly and they are very approachable. We could ask questions that we find boggling or confusing and they are always willing to help and answer them without complaints. We see them as a family because of how close they are to each other and how comfortable they interact with one another.
In terms of work practices, all of them seem really focused and dedicated to what they are doing. We could observe that they are determined in accomplishing their tasks on time. With that, it goes without saying that they deliver their tasks well with excellent quality.
The company also emphasizes the concept of unifying new ideas with technology by proudly branding it with a touch of Filipino pride, thus the name “Ideyatech” where the Filipino word “ ideya” or idea is concatenated with the word “tech” or technology. The company CEO, Mr. Allan Tan, is a jolly and enthusiastic person with great personality. He is a kind of leader who is committed and driven by his passion for helping others through his technologies and software projects. It was indeed a great honor to have finally met him during the orientation because he is a person with great accomplishments and we are all looking forward into shaping ourselves to be like him someday.
Passion is what draws the line between ordinary people and successful ones. That is perhaps one of the most important lessons we learned from Sir Alex during the orientation and we realized that it is something that most of us have to discover and improve within ourselves; the burning passion that will push us past our limits and will drive us towards success.
After the orientation, we were all invited for lunch. The moment they said it was for free, we were all jumping in excitement and happiness inside because we were all starving. We all went to Rack’s together with some employees and ordered their specialty main dish which was ribs. The interns sat together as always and so we were asked to split up for us to interact and talk with the other employees. We have broken the ice for the first time and started communicating with the other employees throughout lunch. Free food is one of the perks during the first day of working at Ideyatech and we think that it is a really important and advantageous perk since we all love food and we all love to eat. After several weeks, a lot of things happened.
Every month, the HR Department holds an activity. These monthly activities were one of those events that really encouraged us to socialize and interact with our co-workers casually and as real people showing our real selves. The monthly activities are definitely one of the memorable experiences at Ideyatech because it allowed us to interact with people and get to know them more.
Every Tuesday, a tech talk(T3) is being held at the tech bar. It is an activity wherein an employee gets to share his/her knowledge about a certain topic. It was great to see how the company cares about the holistic growth of every employee. As the audience, we got to learn more about the things that we are encountering or will be encountering in the future. Working with our project was only a little part of the whole internship experience at Ideyatech. It was our main task, and indeed we learned a whole new bunch of things from it. For us, the technical side of the experience is not as important as the social experience because the technical experience is something that we could always learn by ourselves anytime we want.
JUnit, Android development, and Spring framework Training
Before we started on our own projects all of us received training together. The training consisted of three topics, namely JUnit, Android development, and Spring framework. The training for the JUnit lasted for a day. Half of it was discussion and the other half was for implementation. We were tasked to create a shopping cart application and create unit tests for the same application afterward. The Android development training consisted of two days. On the first day we were taught to create basic android applications and of course, we were tasked to create an implementation of it. The second day, we were taught how to navigate and change the current “activity”. Activity is the term used in android which refers to a single window of the application.
Lastly, the Spring framework training also consisted of two days. The first day was for the old version of Spring which was Spring 3. In Spring 3, everything is configured using XML files which make it very hard to quickstart a project from scratch. The topic for the next day is the newer version of Spring which is Spring boot which solves the XML problems of the framework. The Spring boot now offers default configurations and uses almost pure Java codes to configure with some exceptions like custom bean injections. The training gave us a quick overview of the tools that we will be using on the projects that have been assigned to us. It also served as our basis for choosing which project we’d like to work on.
Eva – HRMS Chatbot
||| Project Experience |||
The different projects we could work on were presented to us and we started forming teams. The teams were asked to choose from among the projects that were presented and our team chose the chatbot application. So here we are assigned on this project for the Human Resource Department and the supervisor that was assigned to us was Sir Kervi “Vanderwaal” Cioco. He is a cool guy. Kervi is another great personality and like everyone else in the company, he is also approachable and easy to talk to. He also managed us well with his regular updates, referred us to other people who could really help us with our project.
One of which who has really helped us a lot with the technical stuff is Sir Jeric who is a senior developer in the company and one of the many who we can say is really experienced, skilled and knowledgeable in the different aspects of software development. Whenever we encountered a problem, an error, or something that we were clueless about, we always approached him and asked for help. He is very professional because even though he seemed so busy with his work, he always took the time to pause, listen and help us out with the problems we encountered, and for that, we could not say thank you enough for his patience and guidance.
So here comes Eva, the chatbot app that we worked on throughout our internship experience. She is a witty, funny, and sexy chat bot that could put a smile on your face when you’re feeling down. One message away in the Facebook chat and she is ready to listen to your woes. She’s open – minded and can talk about any topic you’d want that is under the sun. She is specifically made for the employees of Ideyatech. Her main tasks are to assist them in filing their leaves and to remind them of logging in Unfuddle. You do not need to go through the hassle of logging on to the HRMS website and filling up the fields to file a leave. Chat away because Eva is here to save your day!
Along with the technical experience, our chatbot team was learning how to setup a frontend and backend server, setting up a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) for a secure domain name, fiddling with a Node JS application, manipulating a Linux – based operating system on a Microsoft server in the command – line interface, using a conversational API for a messaging application, hooking up the Node JS application with a page on Facebook, and a lot more. The experience in doing our project was not easy. We encountered several problems along the way. There were times wherein we cannot proceed or make progress simply because we had no idea what to do. This is because we were not familiar with most of the applications that we used in doing this project.
But nevertheless, it became very beneficial for us because we were able to discover new things that we may or may not use in the future. In addition to that, we were also able to realize the value of self-learning. Not all the times we have someone to ask. It is also important that we know how to explore and find solutions on our own. There were times wherein we had to wait for weeks for the confirmation of something. We had to be productive despite being stuck at some point. Despite all these hardships along the way, it was a fun – filled experience and we learned a lot from it.
Two of the major problems that we encountered in making Eva were creating the SSL and being verified and reviewed by Facebook. As we were about to connect our NodeJS program to its corresponding Facebook application, we discovered that Facebook requires a secure domain name for it to work. We first tried making a self-signed certificate but later found out that Facebook does not accept those anymore. Just as we were about to try using Let’s Encrypt to generate an SSL certificate, we were informed that Sir Allan decided to buy a certificate instead. The process of acquiring a certificate is quite long. It took us about 2-3 weeks of waiting just to connect our program to Facebook.
Another frustrating problem we encountered is when all the necessary things are already set up on Facebook such as the account, the page and the applications. Facebook suddenly recognized our account as spammer because it was associated with a company and so the account was blocked and we could not recover all the things that we already setup. Including our beloved Aria, the first of her name, the beloved chatbot of our team, the filer of leaves, the notifier of the unlogged, and the chosen one. It caused us to make another page in a real Facebook account where we set up again all the necessary things. This is where Eva came into the picture. It’s the name we blessed our second chatbot with and she’s the one we submitted for review in Facebook.
So again, we waited for a week for Facebook’s approval. All the downs in this whole experience were outweighed by the ups and the learnings that we got. We could go on all day enumerating all the technical things that we learned. But still, it does not add up to the experience of getting along with different people in an IT environment and having meaningful conversations with them or even just the “small talks”. That is the more important learning because it is a life skill that we will be able to apply anytime and anywhere we go.
Chua, Adrian Jasper
Gonzales, Allen Vincent
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