Programming Bootcamp Student Creates a Time Lapse of His Experience

Programming Bootcamp Student Shows His World for 12 Weeks

Would you be willing to strap a camera to your chest and record your every movement for 12 straight hours? One Hack Reactor programming bootcamp student not only did that, he kept the camera on for 12 straight weeks. Shaohua Zhou is the kind of guy who lives in the moment. Knowing he'll only be at HR one time in his life, immersed in coding for over 800 hours during a span of three months, he created an unforgettable way to relive his experience.

"It is fun. Nobody has done it before and it is just cool," Shaohua wrote on his website. "We want to give other career changers an insider peek of the experience and encourage them to take the leap."

Roughly 50 photos from this time lapse were hand picked and uploaded into the slide show above. We added a little "Virtual Insanity" from musician Jamiroquai to set the mood, and altogether it became a definite must see for people curious about what goes on inside the walls of an immersive programming school.

Shaohua Zhou Talks About His Time Lapse Project

One of the first questions people ask Shaohua is an obvious, privacy related one: "How do you remember to shut the camera off  when you go to bathroom?" Not to mention, there's tons of other unpredictable craziness you're bound to capture. But Shaohua made a decision that any sort of uncomfortableness didn't outweigh the uniqueness of his idea - the chance to remember his programming bootcamp experience in an amazing way.

1. Did you wear the camera so much that you eventually forgot about it, or were you aware of the recording the whole time?

Good question. I didn't forget about it because I have to replace the battery every three hours. My classmates said they didn't notice the camera any more or they actually felt very weird when I didn't wear the camera. One interesting side effect was I replaced the battery so frequently that I had to buy two chargers and 4 additional batteries.

2. Were there any moments that you didn't capture on the time lapse that you wish you could have?

Definitely. The battery tends to run out and I won't notice it until half an hour later. So, it is an imperfect time lapse of my Hack Reactor experience.

3. Have you re-watched the time lapse in its entirety?  

Not really. All those job interviews... The plan is, once I get a job offer, I will do some cool visualizations with all the images.

4. Assuming you enjoyed the outcome of your experience and project, do you plan on making more time lapses in the future?

I enjoyed it. I will do more once I get this baby: Especially if I am traveling or after I have a child. I think babylogging will be huge.

Check out Shao's personal blog here, and watch his minute by minute replay of an immersive programming bootcamp.