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2 very important sets of career / certification questions!!!

By davioh2001 ·
Question set #1 certifications:
I'm wondering what would be THE BEST training resource for those that have very limited budgets(around $100+I am wanting electronic resources only like practice tests)...PLEASE CHIME IN & let me know if you've had experience with the following... how good are the training resources?
can anyone find the link to the $99 unlimited access promotion? how good are the training resources? how good are the training resources?

D. other???? are there other better resources out there?

Question set #2 entry level career strategy:

Ok this is the question: I have seen MANY ads that want a diverse set of skills (must know microsoft, novell, and linux. Must know java, c++, assembly, c#) etc.

My question is do you think its better to specialize in one product certifcation or many and why?

I ask because as I move forward with my training I need to make a decision become the jack of all trades/master of none or focus on just one or 2 things. As an example I have decided to focus on learning JUST JAVA for my programming language! Is this approach foolish due to being to narrow?

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Passion in Programming

by gentle giant In reply to Just Java...

Knowing different programming languages is a good idea and you do need to have passion to learn them, especially if you have 4 during a semester in school. Passion plays more in the joy that a programmer gets when a program works after long hours of writing it. Or the challenge of trying to find a solution to a problem or the right code for a task. The times when programming is going so well that you zone out, not noticing what is going on around you.
Yes, passion does have a role if you want to be a programmer.

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The idea is fine but only initially.

by alan williams In reply to Just Java...

As a person who has been a programmer for over 25 years in many languages, initially there is a point. Learning other languages does help, but once you have learned Pascal derivitives, C derivatives, BASIC derivatives and COBOL; the process becomes boring and suffers from dimminishing returns. What I do see, from experience of colleagues, is a lack of understanding of the software development process outside of the current development fashion. Try NON-object orientated program development to the same standards as object orientated development. Try writing a program in a language that does not use variables (Miranda). I started out writing C and COBOL under CP/M and BASIC using a commodore PET. I had to develope my own methodologies to write Bug free programs and over the years have adapted my techniques with the best that the current methodologies, of the time, have had to offer. One of the most interesting project I found useful was writing a complete program in Miranda. A language that does not have any variables, only function return values.

Finally passion for programming can be faked, especially by someone looking for a job. Other pointers can be used i.e hobbies and interest. Do they have sustained interest in the extra curicukat activities.

PS I'm also looking for a job.

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Agreed except

by techrep In reply to Just Java...

If you are at my stage in a career (14 years in) things can get a little busy. What time I do have I use to test my latest ideas, and execute for my clients. Its not like when I was 12 and had all the time in the world for "honing".

So I'd put it that way. A junior hire better be well rounded, but I'd look for craftmanship in the senior hire first.

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by chriskfau In reply to Just Java...

This is more for geeks who spent 24 hours on IT

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by uofM In reply to 2 very important sets of ...

I do agree on diversifying if you are new to the industry. This gives you the flexibility in terms of finding a position. However, as you grow, you should have a specialization. Now, this does not mean a specific vendor or product - but maybe a technology or methodology.

This give you to advantages - The more things you have experience with - the more you are apt to specialize in something you enjoy (which will also add to your expertise. The more you enjoy it, the more you'll want to work at it). This is compared to picking somehting that's hot right now and going with it.

As for training... I've never found a better way that to just do it. I'm a security engineer.. so that means playing with the tools of my trade at home, or in a lab at home.

I hate to bring this up as everyone has probably said this. But its not the late 90's anymore... if you're looking to have a certification to get a job... you may be in for some dissapointment. While they still mean a good bit, its usually as a supplement to concrete experience.

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by NuSigF In reply to 2 very important sets of ...

Seeing how lots of programming jobs are on a flight for a different country, I never threw my hat into the Java arena. I focused on general IT early in my career, but that was with the US Government. I've since focused on IT Security. This is something that will never fully leave the country. Too many regulations, especially Sarbanes-Oxley, require that companies understand and control their IT environments. IT Security is here to stay, until it's replaced. If there's anything that I've learned from my years as a consultant is that business is always changing. Spotting the needs of the business and addressing their concerns will keep you employed.

To make a short answer long, try and spread yourself out a bit, how much you can do that is up to your abilities, but specialize in a couple of areas at the same time. As far as certifications go, get a book and google up some free tests on the net. Certifications are just certifications... job experience is a more valid measurement of what a person is worth, and I'm speaking from the inside. My CISSP and CISM certifications haven't gotten me anything except a paper certificate.

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by barddzen In reply to Java?

I spent 10 years in the IT consulting world, even had my own consulting company for 4 years, and spent thousands on myself and employees to get various certifications and not ONCE did a company require a certification for a position.

It was more of a "nice to have"...

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What I've Used On the Cheap!

by RknRlKid In reply to 2 very important sets of ...

I can't answer about what you should test on, but based on what you originally asked about study materials, here's what I did:

1. Cram Session stuff is generally good for getting basic general knowledge. However, I did find them lacking in some things that applied to the actual exams. In some cases, the person who wrote the summary paper hadn't seen the exam, but was writing about the outline given by the vendor. (This was very apparent after taking the test myself.)

2. The other resources I would shy away from. I could be wrong, but that is my gut reaction from looking at their sites.

My impression is that you are trying to do this on the cheap. So...

3. Do a Google search of the exam title and number. There is lots of free material out there. There are many people who took the exam and later posted their study notes.

4. Become an avid Goodwill or Salvation Army shopper. I was buying other people's leftover Sybex, Exam Cram, Norton and other books for $1.99 apiece. Now, sometimes you will have to do some updating of material on your own because you may not have the latest edition of the book, but hey, the objective is to save money, right?

5. Check out eBay. The is a guy who has $.99 Books who really does sell books for $.99. I got a series for CIW tests that way.

6. Talk to other people you know. Friends have given me their old materials before. Check with local schools/training centers. They may be very happy for you to cart off their old books that they were going to toss anyway.

There's lots of ways to do this on the cheap!

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Theres no such thing the BEST! because its relative....

by emmaroslinda.edrus In reply to 2 very important sets of ...


What you are looking as the best depends on what is it that really suit you, no one really can say for you because that is depend on their experience and character. Its like some people are good at studying using visual aid, but some people prefer the listening aid. No right or wrong if u pick either one, but its no hurt if you can master both also.

I faced the same dillemma also like you before, which one is better become the jack of all trade/master of none or specialised on just 1 thing? What i have experience is depend back on what is that I really want to do, and what is it that I really want to become next time? Doesnt mean when u become the the jack of all trade means nothing... or become specialise means nothing too, it has its own advantages and it depends on where you are now and where do you want to go frm there. But whatever it is I belive the most important thing is to give the best you can give in wherever you are because the reward will definitely come 1 day. I experienced that.

The question is what actually do you want?

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