IT Employment

Job snapshot: Programmer

This is the first installment of a series devoted to the various roles of IT pros. Here, Justin James, describes his job as a programmer.

This marks the beginning of a series within the Career Management blog in which I feature a short survey of a tech pro in a particular specialty. It's not a comprehensive look, just a snapshot of what the person likes best and likes least about his or her chosen profession. I'm hoping it will give a little anecdotal direction to those of you who are just starting out in IT or are looking to change direction. (If anyone wants to talk about their job for the benefit of our readers, feel free to answer the three questions below and email them to toni.bowers@cbs.com)

Our first IT job is Programmer. I put our survey before Justin James, host of our Programming and Development blog. Here's what he had to say:

What do you like best about your job?

I love it when you give an end user an application that does exactly what they want, and they never thought it could happen. It is a really great feeling to see them saving time and frustration, and it is because of your hard work. There's a balance, though. Too many development projects are conceived without doing any kind of ROI calculation, and then you feel like you are wasting your time. Sure, the user might be happy, but why spend three months working in order to save someone five minutes of effort a day? That just does not make sense to me.

Another thing that I enjoy is coordinating the technology so that it serves a person. While I appreciate "technology for the sake of technology" I recognize that it is not practical for anyone outside of a few areas like R&D or academia. In the business world, you justify your paycheck by adding to the bottom line, and programmers add to the bottom line by making it easier, simpler, and more accurate for the rest of the folks to do their jobs. There is a lot of satisfaction in seeing how your work has benefits that affect a lot of people.

Software development has a lot of drama to it; a workday can run the gamut of emotions from delirious elation to the depths of despair, over something as simple as mixing up "contact" and "contract." A lot of the programmers I know are big into unusual hobbies that tweak the emotions and senses, like extreme sports, car racing, playing drums in metal bands, and so on. I think there is a definite connection there. I got into weightlifting in 2008, and it appeals to me for the same reasons programming does: it is an intense challenge, filled with frustration, but when you break through the barriers the feeling of joy is very intense. Emotionally, solving a difficult development challenge and adding another ten pounds onto a personal deadlift or squat record feel the same.

What do you dislike about it the most?

My number one pain point is when I need to work with people who are trying to drive the development process without understanding it. This is probably the most common complaint in all of IT, but it's real. For example, why would someone who does not know how to program dictate to me what to name the variables? That's like me telling Emeril what brand of basil to buy to make the best lasagna. It's a trivial detail outside of my knowledge domain. At the same time, everyone from bosses to project managers to clients to end users try to (and often are able to) dictate low-level details which are neither important nor their concern. And what usually happens, is that it becomes a giant fight which leaves long-lasting scars and sometimes can wreck a project, even though in the big picture it really doesn't matter. Along the same lines, it can be very frustrating when you have invested a lot of time in a particular approach to the task because the client was positive they knew what they wanted, and when you deliver it, they realize that while you met their specified need, they did not understand their needs fully.

Aside from that, the big frustration often is with missing or poor documentation. For example, on a project that I am currently on, I am interfacing with a system where the API documentation has no examples or useless examples. The result is that for nearly every line of code I write, I have to hit the search engines to dig up the right approach to it. The person who writes the "missing manual" for this system will probably do some brisk sales. Independent consultants in this system get to charge around $150/hour for work on projects that can last months, and a large part of that is that it takes so long to learn, due to the documentation. You see this a lot in IT, situations where consultants are needed because the systems are hard to use or poorly documented, and the situation doesn't really change because the vendor listens to the consultants, not the customers, and of course the consultants love the status quo.

What education/background qualified you for your job?

I learned to program when I was in high school. During high school, I volunteered for a local home for developmentally disabled adults, and did some simple programming for them. In college, I stayed very active, doing things like building Web sites with notes and tips for my classmates, worked a job at the campus computer lab, and moved into part-time development jobs in college. I majored in liberal arts, but by the time I graduated college, I had enough experience to be considered an "intermediate" developer. The key differentiator between me and a lot of the other people I've met in this industry, is the degree of enthusiasm. I like this work enough to devote significant portions of my non-work hours programming, learning about programming, or writing about programming. When other people are watching TV, I'm programming. When other people are sleeping, I'm helping someone else with a question. And so on. The other people I've met like this are almost all very good developers, and never lack for career choices. The people I know who treat it is a 9 - 5 job, well, a lot of them have been struggling to find work during the current downturn, and were often let go in the first round of layoffs. I think there's a connection.

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About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

80 comments
mikifinaz1
mikifinaz1

Beyond the fact that you have to be mindlessly driven by detail one of the facts rarely shared with "new" programmers is that you don't often get to do the "new interesting" stuff. Most programming is about maintenance say 80% and only the guys who have earned their chops (as well as being the most political, read butt kissing here) get to do the new stuff.

Jeff_D_Programmer
Jeff_D_Programmer

Love: the creative process, solving user's issues. finding new and better ways to solve old problems. Loath: Users who are step oriented, who think that automating a process means having the computer do exactly what they already do. A Business Process Analysis can discover what results are needed and then the processes can be redesigned to take advantage of automation and achieve better results. Started in HS, on the school's HP3200 mainframe. Wrote a "Star Trek" program (who didn't?), then tried my hand at writing a command parser. Switched to Macs and HyperCard for a few years. Wrote several apps for family and friends while working in restaurants. Finally got tired of that and went back to school. Got an Assoc in 97. Followed by some sweatshop developing houses and a couple years doing consulting work. Found a company I liked and been there ever since. As for burnout: If this is truly something you love, you don't get burned out on programming - you get burned out on a project, or a job. But when you get away from that (one way or another) you usually find yourself sitting in front of your computer coding something else instead. To me, programming is like breathing: I just do it. I think I was born for this. When talking to clients, I usually have about half the architecture written in my head by the time the BPA is over. The rest of it comes together when I create the requirements doc based on the notes from the BPA. After that, there's just the actual typing.

gmust
gmust

Great piece James, contains useful tips I can hold on to while climbing the ladder!

jck
jck

I used to buy $150 of books a month at Waldenbooks, B&N, etc., and when I got home from work I would go out and walk then come inside and read for 2-3 hours and check emails and chat for 30 minutes (often getting questions from friends) before hitting the hay. About 2 years into living down here, I was thrust (because of my willingness to work myself silly) into a project where I eventually worked 80+ hours a week (some others were working 90+) and I hit the wall...hard. If you have the flexibility to step back from things and take a break from your work for a week, that is cool. But, a lot of people under the thumb of an employer can't do that and it spells disaster for their enthusiasm for technology to some extent. I know it did me. My ability to sit down and get excited about a new technology has to be really peaked before I go buy $200 of books and go online and do 5 hours of reading to learn it. Hopefully, you avoid the kind of "scars" I suffered. It really isn't fun loving technology but getting an anxious feeling whenever you approach getting involved with something new to learn. Just remember: Take time for you, no matter what.

ur.ananth
ur.ananth

Yeah.It is true that you have capture the right requirements to have a robust and good application. Nice Post

SDBizCoach
SDBizCoach

Interesting and informative, but what about the question, "What does my manager, my team, my client, my user expect from me?" or "What is my personal Value Added in my position?" Questions like these are integral to career management.

mendtodd
mendtodd

This is great, not just the original post but the varying points of view in the comments. I'm halfway through my Computer Science B.S. (That looks funny!) and am working towards a second career in the Software Development world. Keep these posts coming! Anyone who excels at what they do more than just the 9-5 requirements.

Englebert
Englebert

What separates a coder from an experienced programmer/analyst is that the latter goes beyond the technical realm and into the business. An experienced P/A can sense whether the user is firm in their requirements or just plucking stuff from thin air. Never approach a user late Friday or early Monday or in the midst of a busy day; they?ll just want to give you quick responses and brush off. Also, know your user, they?re all different. Some are detailed and pointed, others wishy-washy. Lastly and let this point be drilled into your brain. Understand the Business. Never write a single line of code until you understand the business/objective of what your program is out to accomplish. If it does not make sense to you, chances are it wont to the user.

glenstorm_98
glenstorm_98

This was very good, and although our titles differ, his experience is in many ways not so far from my own. The difference is that although I started my career 35 years ago as a hardware technician, and progressed to programming and finally engineering, I have probably done more work as a technical writer than any other single discipline. Even when I get hired as an engineer, when a company finds out that I can write, I very often end up doing mostly that. But of course, it has its frustrations, too. I could write my own post for you about being Technical Writer. I suspect it's different than a lot of people think! -Dw

jjanossy
jjanossy

Tony - I am referring the 27 undergraduate students in my computer science junior year internship course to this series, very relevant and timely! Thanks for this and your other insightful column content. :) Jim Janossy, Depaul University College of Digital Media, Chicago (jjanossy@depaul.edu)

Phillip.Webster
Phillip.Webster

This is an insteresting thread to read. I am creative at heart and love creating solutions to problems. However, since I wrote my 1st program in 1975 I have seen the expectations of management change. Many mangers today do not realize it takes sophistcated code to make something simple to use. I agree totally that those whom manage program teams need to be well versed in programming concepts if not a senior programmer them selves. It is not just about the money for me. If it was, I would not have stuck with it all these years.

dbecker
dbecker

When I was 13 years old, I built a 24 volt DC regulated power supply. I found a rack of relays at the dump from the AT&T microwave television / telephone installation. I designed the circuits and soldered them myself. I made a fully functional binary counter, replete with das blinking lights. I started with four relays per bit and worked my way down to two relays per bit. There was a lot of hard rewiring and soldering. Click, click. Thud, thud, click, click. And so forth up to 31 bits and then there was the final THUD! Telephone dial and those small incandescent bulbs in a panel I drilled and fitted myself. And then. I discovered programming. There went the soldering iron! I felt stupid for all that hard wiring when I could just change code and do so much more -- it was a great advancement. There was the dawn of epiphany. There's also all that money, but who cares about that? There were opportunities too. I performed a number of community service projects. I wrote the original PC based Washington Occupational Information System (WOIS) as a volunteer decades ago. It has helped high school students and junior college students for years look for careers. There was the Spokane County Library System I wrote and converted to the IBM System 36. Then there was the Pierce County Jail Chaplain Library System written in C# with absolutely fully functional XAML based Microsoft Blend panels. Gorgeous and functional. I wrote it for the Tacoma Rescue Mission. Learned a lot. Unfortunately, Pierce County IT took umbrage at it, commended me for doing it and threatened me with job loss if I continued, replete with a letter in my HR Personnel file. We have rules, you know. [I should know: I actually brought the Policy, Standards and Procedure Manual to PIT Management.] Not to worry, in the extremely unlikely event that they fire me, I already have job offers to do more of what I would love to do -- from home no less -- get about the same money and get retirement on top of it. Some threat that is. [The IT Director reports to the same person who is on the Board of Directors of the Tacoma Rescue Mission -- and he has questions....] So the good part: Satisfying curiosity. The bad part: Very stupid politics involving turf issues.

Gonzalo34
Gonzalo34

I started as a 9-to-5 C programmer, and quickly leaned for hardware and electronics design, which found was my real passion along with programming. I like seeing customers playing with finished prototypes just like children with Nintendos, asking if it can do this or that, or suggesting new features for next versions almost inmediately. Also like to give online support while they're doing field setup. They appreciate if you stay online one more hour than usual, to help them out while they're working on a tight schedule, thousands of miles away or in another continent. I hate when some customers get fooled by the small size of electronics devices, and think budget will be as small as the 1"x1" board they hold on their hand, or if they don't understand the nonlinear relation between work effort and results, asking things like "why does it take so long to you to change the button behavior? it's so simple!". Yeah, sometimes writing the user manual is way easier that writing the code!

Photogenic Memory
Photogenic Memory

I've been a tech for a long time. My skill set is low when it comes to programming but I like to get my hands on systems and networking equipment when I am allowed to on the job. I find that helping people is the real element that validates me. My company is currently laying people off. I do a ton of work and work nights. No one wants to do both which makes me valuable but no one is immune to cuts though. You got me thinking a lot on what makes me happy. I think I can find this and more even if I loose my current job. I too have liberal arts degree which actually has helped me stay rounded. Eventually I'm gonna go back to school for more education. Anyways, thanks for getting me thinking. It's refreshing.

adon24
adon24

"..why spend three months working in order to save someone five minutes of effort a day?" So... does every program have to be practical? Why not do it for the satisfaction and/or the paycheck?

thomas.l.deskevich
thomas.l.deskevich

I think it is a good article. But I do like to sleep and watch TV sometimes while I rub my wife's sore feet (I get control of the remote if if I do that). :) It is nice to have some control on the 'off' hours. I always have a backlog, so I come in about every Saturday to work. But I leave when I feel like it. It is good to learn also in those off hours, especially in our job. Some days you feel like you could go straight 24 hours, and others 8 is really a struggle. I guess it is related to the project you are on. I get a fair amount of fix work. Not exactly splitting atoms, but it needs to be done. But with that said, I think we need to be careful that work does not define us too much. I do look at it as part of my identity. But what if we would wake up in a physical state Monday that would not allow us to ever work again? What would we have? Anything?

sas9491
sas9491

What I like most: I think like most developers it's the artistic, if you will, manifistation of one personality. Not that we create things that are in a museum but from a perspective of taking a raw idea and making, or rather coercing, a machine to the realization of the vision. Nah, it's just cool to code 'hello world' and see it on a web page for all to see. What I dislike most: Some friends and I used to say that programming would be great if there weren't any users to interfere with developement. But came to the realization that if it weren't for them where would the ideas come from for developers to develop. Kind of a catch 22. But really the biggest frustration I have is the constent changing and proliferation of languages. Back in the day, it was COBOL, BASIC, FORTRAN, and a couple others. One could become vary proficiant. Today one needs to know a little bit about at least 6 languages to create a web page. Seriously, it's cool stuff, but how proficient can one really be? Qualifications: I have a Bachelor and a Master degree. The dregrees help define where to find information and also to provide a broad background into the industry. Outside of that almost 40 years of experience and most of all a desire to help people and companies maximize their efficiency and effectiveness in doing their job and in competition. And the ability to code 'hello world' in a web page for all to see.

three6t
three6t

Two thumbs up!! That was very well focused and a much needed expression

david.shaw
david.shaw

Excellent - I totally concur Especially the section on contributors who obfuscate the issue and totaly frustate the developer

bradleyj
bradleyj

What do you like best about your job? I enjoy seeing the work plan come together. There are alot of steps before the programming starts and several steps to closing out the programming and project. Seeing all the faces light up when someone's vision is implemented makes it worth it. What do you dislike about it the most? I dislike the hot new technology being shoved in my face before it has been tested to see if it fits. I think all programmers love new technology and want to try as many as they can but when enthusiastic gun slingers trumpet a new technology I run to the search engine (in the hills). Management usually bites on the music of the loudest trumpet and the success rate of integrating new technology is not good. What education/background qualified you for your job? I have a BS in Computer Science but before that I was an electronic repair technician and I think there are alot of parallels. To be good at either you have to be a good troubleshooter. To be really good you have to be able to see the big picture and a way through the system to the solution. I have the hardest times working with programmers who can't troubleshoot or have poor troubleshooting skills. Being able to break down a problem into it's smallest components is valuable for any career but it is essential for programmers.

pocjoc
pocjoc

I very like the code manufacturing and seeing the results. I do not like at all that our job is not good payed, sometimes there is a program that does not works and all the laboral chain is waiting that a simple programmer solves it... great responsability...

markh@yorkwater.com
markh@yorkwater.com

I think it resonates with the best of what I've seen. The best at this business tend to have programming in some form as their hobby, too. "Now, Discover Your Strengths" (and all the books in that series) found that the best people in any field *tend* to have sharp edges rather than being well-rounded. When you would do what you do in some form, even if no one paid you for it, that's a pretty good spot to find a career. On frustrations... I ask exceptionally good questions of end-users (IMO), and yet I occasionally come across someone who is just not able to communicate what their job requires and what the program needs to do. BUT MY BIGGEST FRUSTRATION is when a manager-administrator is driving a project without adequate input from end-users. I need big picture information from the decision maker, but unless I can get plenty of information about the day-to-day work flow of the people who will use the product, it's pretty hard to hit a home run. Some people just don't want me to talk to their end-users. I usually manage to get around that but not always. Again... Great post.

alimaamoser
alimaamoser

Only One word to characterize such a great post ?WOW? that was a very interesting read such a wonderful information for me..i am really impress it. Clean Whites

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

What do I like best? I've always had a great love of making things, unfortunately I wasn't all that good at wood and metal work etc. Software isn't aproblem. What do I dislike about it the most? That those who manage our efforts don't know why it's called SOFTware. It's called that because it should be easier to change than HARDware. Get with the program, buy a clue, stop setting unnecessary constraints that make things harder. What qualification/background qualified my for my job? None. Natural ability, all-consuming interest, and a driving ambition. Without those paper, is a for toilet breaks.

Justin James
Justin James

... I found that for me, the "tech burnout" ended not long after switching jobs. The enthusiasm is just part of my personality, and it would be awfully hard to permanently change it. J.Ja

KiloWatt1975
KiloWatt1975

You let your HR fingers do the walking? I've experienced this too many times. The program is written. Works on or in certain databases. Users find their work disappeared from their workstation. SW say it is HW. HW evaluates, SW manager gets a note, problem happens again. HW manager gets a note, NTF, SW VP gets a note. Problem happens again, HW VP gets a note. Just where does the issue get fixed? In a note? LOL

pwarrenz3
pwarrenz3

I began as an electrical design and test engineer in 1985, moved into full-time technical writing in 1999 and progressed to fixing and managing poorly defined requirements as a Business/Technical Analyst for the past 10. "I could write my own post for you about being Technical Writer." Ditto. My experience as far as tech writing is they are almost always the first to be let go from assignments and the last to be called in on a project. Then you get management requests of "...and I need you to fully document this API/application/system by Friday" when it's your first day on-site and a Monday.

Gonzalo34
Gonzalo34

I can relate to that transition from hardware to software. In my school days I also enjoyed spending hours with a breadboard, snapping ICs and wires, waiting to see some blinking LED -sometimes only smoke. After spending lots of time, wires and solder, I discovered microcontrollers, and concepts of time and space shrinked by several orders of magnitude: boards of just one chip doing everything after some minutes writing assembler code. The rest came on just by the Laws of Inertia, using tools with increasing levels of abstraction: embedded C compilers, 16-bit microcontrollers, ARM processors, single board computers, Texas DSPs, embedded RTOS, Windows CE, Embedded Linux, wireless PHP servers left in the middle of the desert, etc,etc. Demand changed from a few jobs for friends or college mates, to some small orders for some companies in CL and AR, then the jump to US, UK and Asia. As things became more serious, eventually resigned from my job and started my own business, still working on HW design but now outsourcing all manufacturing labor abroad. Back in those days of playing with TTL ICs and LEDs, I couldn't imagine selling my own GSM devices abroad.

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

history is all good when you look back with the rose tinted goggles.

Lee.P.Scott
Lee.P.Scott

Depend on management for the vision of the application as they know where the company is going tomorrow. Depend on the business staff for what applications do now and how applications could be better for them. Everyone must buy in to the project.

jkameleon
jkameleon

If you refuse to do extra work, you can lose your job, and if you do, you have a chance of finding another. If you comply, and do extra work, you will sooner or later ruin your health. When this happens, you will lose your job, and you will have no chance of finding another. So, if your employer demands too much, if your job sucks, losing it is the best option on the long run. And that's not just my opinion When the Laid-Off Are Better Off (Business Week)

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

when it comes to the cuts, all the overtime and weekend work in the world makes no difference to the management.

Justin James
Justin James

... they are paying for someone to create new efficiences. In "typical business development", if there is no ROI, there is no reason to do it. Do I do development for satisfaction, or non-monetary reasons? Sure. Just not on my employer's dime. I do it at home on my own time. Looking back, one of the mistakes I made was not studying CS and leaning something like supercomputing, video game design, etc. where I *could* get paid to write more "interesting" applications. :) J.Ja

KiloWatt1975
KiloWatt1975

Thanks for answering, and hope you sent it to the email address. What I like most? Animating a photo 1000 ways. What I like least? Having someone say it sux! Experience? Pre Windows when a Housetailer held a Tube and Transitor computer, where todays laptop has more power! LOL The OSU, DeVry, U.S.Navy, IBET C/S,CO I felt his article was very layman, to allow his expression shine. Hardware Engineering and good clean code will always shine, and easy to tell good from bad. I'll stick with my Amiga Emulation in XP-MCE until I know it runs in Win7! LOL I made a 35year career out of asking such a simple technical question to HW/SW engineers, to have them running to their desks to answer. In a repair facility at DataGeneral in the 80's, some MOT planner gave me the riot act for using a part number of faster ram, in a slower bus. Called an Engineer over, then let him defend me. The article gave me some clues to handling programmer issues in my reitirement years. Get a new programmer! LOL Trouble shooting and interfacing SW/HW now for over 20 years, just makes me want to know what Tesla knew! KiloVideo

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

MY BIGGEST FRUSTRATION is when a single programmer thinks they can drive my project without a clue about my business, it's needs or the end product. I ensure adequate input from end-users then pass on the required to the programmer. Works a charm to date.

KiloWatt1975
KiloWatt1975

Your post makes you a bit of eletist,imo. Thinking outside the Box. EndUser's put products out the door faster than internal testing, period. Without universal code to work on some min.spec system, you have no product. Xternal testing gets product out the door, faster than internal, when you have over 10,000 end-users waiting for your next code. Not everone can run out and buy the next best PC/OS, so universal code is just the bigger and badder the HW, gives you more of the same software. We are not talking Vegas or MovieMaker! LOL Real Time All the Time Tia.... ;ok, did you ever reply to her? LOL

gharlow
gharlow

No raises in 6 years. Long hours and rediculous expectations driven by "cost management", micro-managers, and generally poor working conditions. I have had enough and have moved on. Don't get me wrong, I love the process of creating great software, and have code in place which has processed in excess of a billion dollars of sales transactions. I used to love my job, but with the economy tanking, it became a big nasty mess, and the stress just was not worth it any more.

jkameleon
jkameleon

It gets depleted sooner or later, and when it does- how will the remains of your personality look like?

jck
jck

I took a tech IT support job doing timeclock installations/database setups/DOS scripting job as an implementation analyst. I would sit down in front of Visual Studio and just stare sometimes, and wonder what I could do with it anymore and it made me anxious. But, 3-4 months of not seeing any significant sunlight on weekdays, as well as having to put up with the rigors of project management changing the rules on the fly to try and impress/keep/brown-nose the customers was horrific. It is still to this day why I hate working with incompetent managers. I would rather walk away from a job with management who doesn't know how to plan and compromise, than stay and have to be concerned more with programming for possible scenarios rather than the specification of a design document.

glenstorm_98
glenstorm_98

I'm working on it; about halfway done now. What's the best way to send it? Email by appending techrepublic.com to the end of your account name? -Dw

Justin James
Justin James

Depends a lot on the company and the manager. The same can be said for *any* job, I may add. A petty manager or a shortsighted company will cut without regard for work ethic regardless of your industry. J.Ja

jkameleon
jkameleon

20 (give or take) years of enthusiasm, and I don't even got a lousy T shirt to show for it!

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

but I'd be hard pressed to earn more doing anything else, and when all's said and done, I'm getting paid way more than most for doing something I do for fun.

jkameleon
jkameleon

I evolve my skill set as I go, as needed. Unfortunately, that too can become boring. Sometimes it feels like I'm evolving in circles. No pogress, just fashion.

Justin James
Justin James

Maybe for some folks. But for someone like me, who is constantly evolving their skill set, constantly learning, constantly growing, guess what? I can always get a new job if I have to. Look, after a few weeks or even a few months it is obvious if a job is going to work out or not. Don't like the job? LEAVE. I've had some great jobs which I loved. I had to leave some when the companies were in trouble, I left others when I saw that the career growth I wanted wasn't there. But I've had plenty of jobs that I loved, and very few that I hated. And the jobs I hated? I left. And beyond that, there is always going out into the work of independent consulting, or starting your own business. But at the end of the day, you have a simple choice: Be content with your current skillset and become an easily replaced commodity and therefore exploitable. Or do not be content with your current skillset, constantly learn and evolve, and have the ability to create your own opportunities. If your mindset is "I deserve permanent employment and happiness because I'm good at my current job" then you'll probably never get it. There are a dozen other people who can do what you do, some for cheaper. Having job stability and career options is premised on your differentiators, and NO ONE in the IT industry ever differentiated themselves by sitting at a desk 9 - 5 and being content with what skills they learned at their desk. If that's what you want, you picked the wrong industry! J.Ja

jkameleon
jkameleon

The only bright spot is tremenduous progress in hardware on it's lowest level. Processor speeds, and memory capacities reached ungodly levels, unimagineable a couple of years back. The concepts, however, remained the same. The basic computer architecture is more than half a century old. As far as programming is concerned, progress ground to a halt during dotcom boom. What remained is an illusion of progress. Old ideas are recycled, given new commercial names, hyped for a year or two, and that's it. There is no progress in IT anymore. There's no evolution, just fashion.

asmall722
asmall722

Enthusiasm and "new situations", both in and out of the work environment, are completely infinite and inexhaustible. The trick is not only knowing what you like, but also being open to trying and experiencing new things. IT is such a dynamic and evolving field that things are ALWAYS changing, and with change comes new opportunites.

jkameleon
jkameleon

Their number is limited, and you can't change them forever.

Justin James
Justin James

It may be non-renewable for you, but not for me. If I find myself in a situation I hate, I change the situation and everything is back to normal again. :) J.Ja

glenstorm_98
glenstorm_98

Sent to the email addy you posted in the header of the next snapshot in your series.

Englebert
Englebert

When it comes to cuts, one of the highest attributes of an employee, is their popularity. How well do people perceive them and how well they get along. More so than the person who works hard. Never make the mistake of working hard and ignoring your relationships with others. Smile, be friendly, socialize, mix, etc especially with the key people. They'll protect you.