No Future in Programming?

This is a discussion on No Future in Programming? within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; I was talking to a family friend the other day, who, it happens, is a programmer working mainly with C#. ...

  1. #1
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    No Future in Programming?

    I was talking to a family friend the other day, who, it happens, is a programmer working mainly with C#.

    After telling him I was getting into C++, he said that there was no future in programming and a job that used to earn him £40 an hour now earns him £20, purely due to the ammount of programmers there are around now there werent before.

    Is this true? Because I would love a job in information tech. but a well paid one would be nice.
    Last edited by p_m63; 07-10-2006 at 03:23 PM.

  2. #2
    pwns nooblars
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    Do what you love is my first advice. I am an intern making 10/h and most of the guys at work make 20-25. That is not bad pay at all, plenty enough to pay the bills and have stuff left over.

    There is tons of future in programming, with how our world is, there will always be a need for more programs and what not.

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    Registered User divineleft's Avatar
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    the number of jobs available for programmers is supposed to increase more than in any other field in the next 10 years according to some government study

    i'll pull up the link if I come across it

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    Registered User HaLCy0n's Avatar
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    I agree with Wraithan...do what you enjoy. I'm currently an intern doing coding and I'm making enough to get by on. All of my friends that already graduated started off making more than enough to pay the bills and have some fun with. Whoever told you that there is no future in programming probably is just doing something wrong

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    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    There was indeed a time (10, 20 years ago) when programming used to pay much, much better. It is however still a pretty well payed job by many standards.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

  6. #6
    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >Is this true?
    Probably for the guy that told you so. Programming is a vast field with tons and tons of sub-fields. Some are more popular than others. If you're a programmer working in a popular area (C# would be one of those), naturally the pay will be less because the resource pool is so full. On the other hand, if you're working in a less popular area (legacy maintenance in COBOL, for example), you can command ridiculous salaries because there are so few skilled people.
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    the hat of redundancy hat nvoigt's Avatar
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    Some thousand years ago, if you could make fire you got all the women, you lived in the largest cave in the valley, you could even have cave paintings from the most famous artists of your time. Fast forward to today. Despite personally being able to start up fire from as little as a match and some wood and flamable liquid, no women has yet been wooed by the fact. Still living in an appartment and no one has asked to paint my walls for free. What is the lesson ? Time and tide wait for no man. Supply and Demand. Many people want to be programmers. Those that are into the field today are 50% enthusiasts and 50% 9-5 people who give away their brains when they leave the building and try to get them back the next day. It has changed from the freaky on-the-edge wizardry thingy that no-one understood to *gasp* a job.

    If you want an above-average paying job, you have to get into fields that are too hard or too freaky for competition today. Maritime Demolitions, Nano-Science, military hardware, law... Programming however is a job that pays your bills ok. You won't get a Porsche any time soon, but who really needs one ? You spend 8 hours a day on your job, besides sleeping that's more than on any other single part of your life. I wouldn't want to trade a fun job for anything that pays better but makes me hate a major part of my life.

    A job always is a tradeoff between fun and money. From my point of view, this means take as much money as you need to not think about it and as much fun as you can otherwise get. Other people might have other views, though. I know at least two who work so hard that they don't even have time to spend their money. It's not like I can buy another life when this one is over, so I don't really get it, but to each his own.
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    It sounds like the guy who wanted to close the patent office at the start of the 1900's because everything had already been invented.

    Sure it's possible that the field is slowing down (though by the sound of it - it isn't) but that doesn't by any means mean there's no future. There will always be a need for maintenance, and most likely we're going to see a continued demand for software. The only thing is that as hardware is changing, software does as well. There's a huge market for wireless and portable devices right now. The software for that is different than the simple graphic adventure games of 20 years ago.

    I also had the perception that by the time I'm through college and into the real world, programmers would be a dime a dozen and it was a stupid career choice. But I was talking to my brother-in-law about it, and he assured that there was still a very huge demand for GOOD programmers. If you can prove that you're a good worker who is truly qualified in their field, you don't need to worry about all the joe schmo's who are looking at programming as "a job". Take the board for example. There's hundreds of members who are just mildly interested and never truly master the subject matter. Then there's the few elite like nvoight here, who still make programming into "the freaky on-the-edge wizardry thingy that no-one understands".

    But as mentioned above - do what you love.

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    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    While I agree with the "do what you like" idea, the fact is that for many people life is not so... simple. Not all jobs will offer a similar feeling of acomplishment. And some jobs will even do a very good work at making you hate what you love most; programming.

    It is ok in the early stages of our career when we can basically show them our shiny buttocks as we move out. But when wife, kids, and bills, get into the equation suddenly changing jobs becomes a not so interesting choice.

    Irresponsible work mates that happen to make more than you do, short-sighted managers, idiotic team leaders, stone-age company culture, all these things can turn a beautiful profession into a depressing experience.

    And it's probably when we start blaming it on the profession.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

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    I think its interesting that noone here has mentioned outsourcing. Big software corperations like Microsoft and IBM have a very significant portion of their development outsourced to India, China and Russia. And that outsourced work is often the more difficult low level work such as driver developent. Software companys are obviously not going to outsource all their R&D (I know of electronics companys that have eliminated their entire engineering staff however and gone completely outsource). But the days when a computer science degree would garantee a decent paycheck are over. People should look more to the managment side of things as executives with technical background are going to be more and more needed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MDofRockyView
    A good manager is someone with poor imagination and a very loud voice who screams at everyone and blames everyone except themselves when things go wrong.
    Although this may accurately depict the mentality of the majority of lower managemnt. The fact is that smarter (better technically educated) lower management will make a stronger more competive company.

  12. #12
    I am me, who else?
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    In addition, micromanaging effective and mature programmers hinders performance and creativity.

    A manager in a sense is a leader. Good leaders are able to use talents to further their goals, team goals usually, and direct their creativity in a way to maximize their potential.

    "Smarter", book smart only, managers can be just as ineffective in managing.

    Though I suppose my views, are more idealistic than reality. Honestly, if you don't use the talent given to you, then why even try?

  13. #13
    (?<!re)tired Mario F.'s Avatar
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    It's kind of ironic that a vast number of graduate programmers end up in management or building their own companies which they will manage, forsaking most, if not all, chances to actually do any programming.

    I didn't graduate when I could. Again... wife and a lovely daughter Just couldn't keep up with the univ at night. Ended up quitting. However, while I could make a lot more money had I finished my graduation, I do wonder what I would be doing today...

    Certainly the corporate environment is not appealing to me. I actually shun it. Probably would be one of the few graduates in computer sciences in my country who still coded... who did nothing but code.


    As a side note... I do find it shocking that most graduates in computer sciences here end up in management. The problem is not so much the fact they chose that career; I would break my neck first, but they like it. To each his own.

    The problem is that the country has very little to offer to a fresh graduate in this field. There's very little research being done these parts and any applications of this field of study are reserved only to those choosing the academic career. There's a few exceptions of course. But... yeah.
    The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”
    The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.


    Originally Posted by brewbuck:
    Reimplementing a large system in another language to get a 25% performance boost is nonsense. It would be cheaper to just get a computer which is 25% faster.

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