Getting a Job

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    Getting a Job

    After going thoroughly going through the 6 C++ books recommended by this site to become an expert, what's the next step? How do you go from those books to getting a job? Is it enough?

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    Learning computer programming is only the first step.

    Now you need to learn about databases, design patterns, algorithms in some cases, etc.

    Most businesses are invested in enterprise solutions for networking applications, you'll need to understand Enterprise, Service Oriented Architecture. You'll need to know business systems and business logic, workflow systems, it goes on in the ways there are to specialize.

    The work I do for a living as a programmer is wide and varied, knowing programming is just the tool, but you have to know how to design and interpret plans, strategic thinking and generally understand how to organize and translate information from one system to another.

    If you're not talking about business applications development but game programming, then you need to know game design, complex systems, directx/opengl, shader design, parallel programming, physics, general mathematics, etc etc.

    If you're not talking about either of those, but maybe programming for scientific research, well... it goes on and on.

    It all depends on what you want to do.

    What ever you do, expect to be hired as an intern and not be making the big bucks right off the bat, places expect you to prove yourself.

    Competition is growing in software, but talented programmers are still in high demand. So learn fast and show off some skills. >:]

    If all of that is too much just write software for Apple's iPhone and sell it on App Store, $100 for a development account and App Store access. Nice way to make some money if you can write good software. (Objective-C/OpenGL ES 1+/OpenAL/etc.)
    Last edited by since; 12-04-2009 at 02:38 PM.

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    Most software development companies will require you to have a 4 year degree from a school with an accredited CSC/CPE/EE program.
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    As mentioned, most respectable companies require "proof" that you "know" what your doing. This usually means some type of diploma/degree. Ive been studying computer science for almost 7 years now and havent started the career searching yet.

    As with everything in life, the amount of effort you put in to something is proportional to how much it will pay off (or your success). If you read/study for a few months then it will probably be difficult to impress an employer, especially in todays increasingly competitive and difficult market. Then again there are always people who get breaks.

    (Note I am not trying to be discouraging, if you think so).

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    I am soon to graduate with a bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science. I wanted a degree so I could get a job and move out of my parents' house. I made a bad decision, because it seems computer science is not something you can do without really getting into it and learning it all the time. And I don't even like computer science at all. I feel like I have wasted all this time in college for nothing. I just want a job that pays enough for me to live off of.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fulwin View Post
    graduate with a bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science
    Okay great..

    Quote Originally Posted by Fulwin View Post
    I don't even like computer science at all
    Now I'm confused.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fulwin View Post
    getting into it and learning it all the time
    Science is in the title. Science is about learning, and discovering. Computers are technology. Both of these subjects change all the time.

    Your post was putting forth the question if 6 books was enough to get a job. Certainly a CS degree should be enough to get a job to live off. However, I don't know how skilled you are if you spent 4 years in college learning a career you didn't like, and how that would affect finding a job. Generally recruiters are going to look for somebody who wants to do the job. What did you learn in college? Apply for related jobs, and prove you have the skillset to do the job.
    Warning: Have doubt in anything I post.

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    The most I learned was a little bit of programming. I don't know if I could program anything in the real world. When I look at open source stuff for the possibility of getting in some practice or real world experience, it's all very confusing to me. College was really a joke. You don't learn much at all.

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    Moved to GD.

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    Malum in se abachler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fulwin View Post
    I am soon to graduate with a bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science. I wanted a degree so I could get a job and move out of my parents' house. I made a bad decision, because it seems computer science is not something you can do without really getting into it and learning it all the time. And I don't even like computer science at all. I feel like I have wasted all this time in college for nothing. I just want a job that pays enough for me to live off of.
    Your Future begins HERE! or HERE.

    I highly recommend the first one if you are are as unmotivated as you sound.

    Don't think that open source is in any way indicative of most real world programming. Most open source is spaghetti code. Too many cooks and all that. Managing an open source project is like leading MENSAN's, err I mean like herding cats.
    Last edited by abachler; 12-05-2009 at 10:44 AM.
    Until you can build a working general purpose reprogrammable computer out of basic components from radio shack, you are not fit to call yourself a programmer in my presence. This is cwhizard, signing off.

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    Look into Finance... you'll find tons of uninspired software developers like yourself maintaining ancient COBOL based systems to pay the rent and hopefully retire early. May sound kind of crappy, but it's a good paying field and once you get to Senior-VP / Director level, you'll never have to touch source code again.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ablacher
    Your Future begins HERE! or HERE.

    I highly recommend the first one if you are are as unmotivated as you sound.
    I disagree with your (serious or not) job recommendations. I also disagree that you can say he/she is unmotivated, with the amount of given information. Earning any science or engineering degree is not (or at least should not be) easy, and I think shows dedication whether he/she likes the field or not. Recently, a friend of mine graduated in a business/applied-oriented CS degree to realize he doesnt really enjoy the field. He is now pursuing an unrelated graduate degree.

    Quote Originally Posted by ablacher
    Don't think that open source is in any way indicative of most real world programming. Most open source is spaghetti code
    Please see "Firefox", "Google Chrome", "Linux kernel" to disprove these statements. Open source is a type of real world programming. If you look at very small projects you may notice the quality is not that great, due to the lack of resources or time constraints. If you look at huge projects you may also notice that the quality is degraded, due to the difficulty in managing such a large project. Note that the exact same thing happens in "real world programming" at some company.

    Quote Originally Posted by fulwin
    I am soon to graduate with a bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science.
    Applied degrees are generally more, well, applied. That is, it should prepare you more for the "real world", so it would generally have more emphasis on actual programming or networking or other specific technologies, which, as stated, come and go. A non-applied CS degree gives more emphasis on theoretical background and possible creates more opportunities to pursue research.

    Quote Originally Posted by fulwin
    The most I learned was a little bit of programming. I don't know if I could program anything in the real world.
    Now this is contrary to what I said above. Your applied degree should give you a good background in hands on stuff like programming. If it didnt, then either: the school did a bad job (irrelevant course material) or you did a bad job (poor grades/didnt learn anything).

    Quote Originally Posted by fulwin
    College was really a joke. You don't learn much at all.
    If you realized it was a "joke", you should have done something about it to save money and time. You can apply to immediately write the final exams for courses, so you dont waste a semester on them and be over with it in a day. This saves time. Otherwise, you could have went to a better school. Did you go to a community college or some well respected university? I imagine the former.

    Quote Originally Posted by fulwin
    it seems computer science is not something you can do without really getting into it and learning it all the time
    As hinted at above, CS is science. You say in your first post you read X number of books and your now an expert--impossible. Any amount of schooling and/or reading will not make you an expert. School is basically an attempt to present you with many different scenarios that could happen in the real world so you are prepared for them if they arise. However, since there are a infinite number of things that will happen in the real world, and since school is for a finite period of time, it (nor reading) cannot prepare you fully. You can get a job and in two weeks learn more than you did in all of your schooling (as an example).

    So if you didnt learn anything in CS and dont like it, the best thing to do is to find something you like and is challenging--go for a different degree or look into graduate school (it does not have to be related to CS). Also, just because you have a CS degree doesnt mean you will get a CS job, so you have options.

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    Thank you for the good response, nadroj.

    I am a bit unmotivated when it comes to computer science or programming. What I'm looking for is not necessarily to get good at programming (although I might if it gets me a decent job) but to just be able to get a decent job to live off of. I'm tired of living at my parents' house. I just believe I made a big mistake going into computer science. It's not something you can take lightly.

    Getting a degree in something else, something that can more easily get me a job, sounds like a good idea. It's just that I have wasted years of my life in college already, and I want so badly to get out of my parents' house. It would take me a really long time to get another degree, because my parents paid for my first one, and they would not pay for another. I would probably have to get loans. I hope I don't have to resort to that. With a degree in computer science that I have now, I hope that I can get a job now, without spending more time in school.

    The school I went to was Troy University. At first, it was Troy University in Montgomery, AL. Later, I switched to the online version, which is called Troy eCampus.

    As for becoming an expert with 6 books, I only said that because this website says "From C++ Beginner to C++ Expert." I haven't finished them yet. I am in the middle of the second one.

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    I am a bit unmotivated when it comes to computer science or programming.
    Thats certainly not a good thing to admit, and if its true then dont do anything related to CS or programming. If you already have that attitude before starting your career, then if you chose this as a career you will have a terrible life (whether it pays well or, more likely, not). Note that "IT" actually has nothing to do with CS or programming--IT is not CS or programming, so you might want to look into IT.

    What I'm looking for is not necessarily to get good at programming (although I might if it gets me a decent job) but to just be able to get a decent job to live off of.
    If you arent interested in programming, then, as I suggested above, do something else. If you still like "computers" then do some IT or tech support thing if thats what you like. Certainly do not get into programming if you have this attitude.

    I'm tired of living at my parents' house.
    Move out! You can have a full time job while at home or not. You can also be in school while at home or not. Living with or without your parents is completely irrelevant.

    Getting a degree in something else, something that can more easily get me a job, sounds like a good idea...It's just that I have wasted years of my life in college already
    Theres no magical field that guarantees getting a job easier or a better job. If there were such a field then everyone would be in that field, meaning it would actually be very difficult to complete with all of those people. This actual proves there is no such field, something I learned how to do in CS ("proof by contradiction"). If youve never heard of this term then you probably chose a bad school. Also getting any degree certainly isnt a waste of time. The more stuff on your resume the better you look to an employer (of course within limits).

    I would probably have to get loans
    I dont think you realize how many students are in debt because of school.

    I switched to the online version, which is called Troy eCampus.
    An online degree probably isnt the best idea. Though if the one you chose is credible/respected and you've learned what you set out to (which doesnt it appear so) then its an OK idea. The physical learning and lab environment at school is definitely a good learning experience, rather than an individual non-social one done online.

    I only said that because this website says "From C++ Beginner to C++ Expert."
    If I told you "Im God" would you believe me? Being in CS means you (should) have strong logic and reasoning skills, and can see that statements such as the one you read is totally ridiculous.

    You shouldnt be motivated by money or time. If you start a career in something you dont like today, you will not be happy in the future, whether the job pays well or not. If you take the time now to get educated in something you enjoy then it will pay off later, whether the job literally pays well or not.

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    Malum in se abachler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nadroj View Post
    I disagree with your (serious or not) job recommendations. I also disagree that you can say he/she is unmotivated, with the amount of given information.
    Are you stoned or stupid -
    Quote Originally Posted by Fulwin View Post
    I am a bit unmotivated when it comes to computer science or programming.
    Is all the information I need to know that the poster is unmotivated when it comes to computer science or programming.

    Now as for serious job recommendations, given that the poster already has a degree, I stick with my original categorization of that second link being a bad idea, but this one is far more reasonable. But again, they will kind of expect you to be motivated in your field.

    Quote Originally Posted by nadroj View Post
    Please see "Firefox", "Google Chrome", "Linux kernel" to disprove these statements. Open source is a type of real world programming.
    Actually Firefox and Linux (not the kernel) are the largest contributers to that opinion. I haven't had the pleasure/pain of looking through the chrome source code... yet.
    Last edited by abachler; 12-05-2009 at 01:45 PM.
    Until you can build a working general purpose reprogrammable computer out of basic components from radio shack, you are not fit to call yourself a programmer in my presence. This is cwhizard, signing off.

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    ablacher, If you followed the messages chronologically (as most humans do), you will notice that the quote you looked at was stated after my message. This means that
    Quote Originally Posted by nadroj
    with the amount of given information
    my statement I believe is true.

    Quote Originally Posted by ablacher
    Are you stoned or stupid -
    Do not call me stoned or stupid.

    Quote Originally Posted by ablacher
    Linux (not the kernel)
    Linux is the kernel. Are you referring to projects that run specifically on Linux, then? If so, are these projects well known or are they written by just a few people? If thats the case, then see my above post for why this happens. And, again, this happens in "real world programming" too.

    And by the way, what is "real world programming"?

    Quote Originally Posted by ablacher
    I haven't had the pleasure/pain of looking through the chrome source code... yet.
    So again your assuming it is written poorly? This is another assumption. Keep in mind that its written by probably the most powerful, wealthy, and respected tech companies in the world.

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