My first exposure to anything programming-related was in high school when I took an intro course on web development. When I realized I could create something from scratch at practically no cost (I had a computer at home), I fell in love right away.
I was involved in marketing and business, and considering becoming an engineer. Marketing and business savvy have remained focus areas in my life, but I veered away from traditional engineering when I realized software was such a broad field in which I could use my existing skill set.
If I'm not looking for missing semicolons, you'll find me kayaking, playing my guitar (poorly), or playing with hardware. I've built (or customized) every computer I've owned, and recently I've taken up creating my own mechanical keyboard - from scratch!
I'm most comfortable with Java, but my passion lies with web development. I'm familiar with HTML, CSS, JS, and jQuery.
I will soon be learning C++ in college, and am constantly learning web development technologies in my spare time. I'm focusing on technologies I see as widely used in companies I'd like to work for: Angular, MongoDB, SQL, and React, among others.
I recently purchased a domain (michael-mazzone.com) to host my portfolio. It should be up and running by April 4, 2016. The coolest thing I've made is a "programmer's calculator", written in Java. It can be found on my GitHub page, along with several other projects I'm working on.
I've come to realize that a "memorable problem" in programming translates to long nights of painstaking doubt, followed by brief moments of immense satisfaction. When I was working on my calculator mentioned before, I had no idea how I'd be able to display operands and numbers without breaking how they are input to the equation. In the end, I realized I had to take white space into account because of the way we were appending the text to be evaluated, which was immensely satisfying. It came down to having x space on one side for certain operands, and x space on the other side for others... who even thinks about that when they're putting numbers into their calculator!
The best advice I can give is not my own, but I'll pass it on. If you aren't reading and learning every day, you've already fallen behind. Mark Cuban said something along those lines, and it's definitely true in a field where new frameworks, languages, and norms are being introduced on a daily basis.