Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

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#1 seymorevenue  Icon User is offline

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Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 10:01 AM

Hi Im a highschool student and want to go into computer programming, I thought Id ask in the Caffeine Lounge if there's anyone that can answer a few questions. Anyone that programs for a living I'd love to hear from :)

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?

2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?

3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?

4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?

5. What is the best part of computer programming?

6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?

7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?

8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?

9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?

10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)

11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?

12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?

13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?

14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?

15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?

16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?


Thanks for the response, I look forward to working alongside you guys :D

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#2 modi123_1  Icon User is online

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 10:20 AM

We have had good majority answered in a 'QA with the Experts'... you can read up on a crazy number of the replies here.
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#3 WolfCoder  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 03:11 PM

Ooh! Ooh! I'm an unprofessional programmer!! Interview Me Me Me Me Me!
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#4 seymorevenue  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 04:41 PM

View PostWolfCoder, on 28 April 2012 - 03:11 PM, said:

Ooh! Ooh! I'm an unprofessional programmer!! Interview Me Me Me Me Me!

I'd love to interview you, I reall would. Can you answer the questions while I think of more? :)
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#5 seymorevenue  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 04:46 PM

Unprofessional programmers will work if you can still answer the questions but I'd like to hear from someone that makes money off programming in some way.
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#6 Sergio Tapia  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 04:50 PM

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?
After my second month while studying Civil Engineering, I switched majors to Systems Engineering.

2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?
Didn't prepare myself at all, just did coursework until the second year of Uni.

3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?
A year of Uni more or less.

4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?
????

5. What is the best part of computer programming?
Solving problems and making the computer your bitch.

6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?
I wish parallel programming was easier and even more abstracted! We're getting there slowly, but we'll see.

7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?
During Uni, don't lean on only coursework to gain experience. Practice on your own, build pet projects, etc.

8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?
Sitting on the computer, Reddit, Kongregate, EUREKA -> CODE CODE CODE

9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?
Built an item tree builder for a website I made.

10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)
?????

11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?
Handling business types who think everything is just a "snip snip here and there". They think everything is easy and it's incredibly annoying.

12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?
????

13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?
Ste Buscemi

14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?
BILLIONS

15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?
0 hours.

16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?

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#7 seymorevenue  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 05:08 PM

Thanks for the response Sergio! Sorry if some questions were confusing. If anyone else want to respond or has anything to add please do :D
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#8 lordofduct  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 05:22 PM

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?
July 2007, buddy coerced me into learning to program so we could make a video-game under the guise that I'm good at math.



2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?
A LOT of Mt. Dew, the deprevation tank I call my garage, and a whole lot of willingness to throw my social life out the window.



3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?
I graduated from 'The University of My Garage' with a major in coding and a minor in masturbation.



4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?
5 months before I had my first job offer. I failed at that job horribly, but it was exactly what I needed to kickstart my career.



5. What is the best part of computer programming?
I get to solve problems/puzzles. I love solving problems/puzzles. I get to MAKE things... damn ladies with their naughty bits getting to make babies... so I guess this is the next best thing.



6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?
Change? Well it's changing all the damn time... it's another part I love about being a programmer, I constantly have to be on my toes learning new technologies just to stay ahead. I'll take any excuse to research fun puzzley stuff. I like the methods in which it changes, so I want change anything about the way it changes, I'll only play my role in influencing those existing changes.



7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?
Love it or leave... this is the job of the future, but the problem is, it's the job of the future. We're to the 21st century that plumbers/electricians/contractors/engineers were to the post-war era (yes that list is an allussion to the number of 'kinds' of programmers there are from low-end to high-end).



8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?
Slump my ass into work, watch people avoid talking to me as I'll most likely chomp their heads off, read through list of e-mails bitching that a feature they never asked for doesn't already exist in the software, read some web-comics, discuss the days plans with the boss, read the DIC forum, review the bug list, check facebook and watch a youtube clip, select a few bugs and test to see if I can replicate them, read some more DIC, fix those bugs, get lunch, watch some video-game related videos on escapist or penny-arcade, spend the rest of the day hopping between DIC and working on the main development project that month.



9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?
Dealing with stingy freelancers from Russia and Dubai is total fucking suck! But definitely an interesting excercise in dealing with people and getting them to do what you need them to do so that you can do your job and maybe EAT that month...



10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)
PASSION, a whole shit ton of PASSION. One does not just walk into computer science.



11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?
Finding time to sleep



12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?
Ummmm... it's fun while still paying the bills...



13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?
All sorts of people ranging from cool to crazy, boring to interesting, dumb as rocks to very intelligent. This job seems to contain all walks of life.



14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?
That depends wildly on the region you are located and the kind of programming you do. I know some developers who make 25K, I also know some who make 6 figures.



15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?
I work about 12 to 14 hours a day, 6 days a week. 40 hours at my day job, the rest for pleasure.



16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?
If the amount of hours I peddle away at this isn't enough evidence... a whole fucking shit ton should suffice.
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#9 WolfCoder  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 09:38 PM

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?

When I was 11 years old, I actually started a year later at the age of 12.

2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?

I got a bunch of computer textbooks and worked through the examples including: The Commodore 64 Programmer's Reference, Game Design: Secrets of the Sages, The C++ Programming Language, Tricks of the Windows Game Programming Gurus, Charles Petzold's Programming Windows, The "red book" OpenGL Programming Guide.

3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?

At the age of 13-14 I sat myself in front of my machine and taught myself things like basic linear algebra, basic theories of sound, basic algorithms, geometry, and anything else I needed. My classmates were still struggling with balancing algebra equations no more complex than single variables. I sure didn't learn in school, that's for sure- it wasn't until college that I actually learned new things.

4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?

6 years, but I always consider myself to have libraries more to learn.

5. What is the best part of computer programming?

The programming.

6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?

That they would teach it more in Computer Science. The new graduates along side me couldn't out-program the EE students. They barely even know JAVA- if even anything at all. They don't teach C++ anymore yet I keep seeing new employers (including research right here at the school) wanting C++ programmers. We need more C++ courses.

7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?

Go down to your bookstore, thumb through the programming books and pick ones you like. Teach yourself what is inside them. The Internet will only be your reference- YOU must be your own teacher. Learn how to learn.

8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?

I show up to work/I start up a hobby project, pick up where I left off and just write the code. If something doesn't work, goes wrong, or I encounter a difficult part of the project, I start scribbling on my notebook and think very hard about all parts of the problem before attempting it. Happens more often at work where I have to get software that was written while I was in elementary school to work with research that was invented as I write.

9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?

There was that one time I came back after dental surgery halfway aware of myself from the incredibly strong narcotics, just barely home after they had me under. I had taken something for the pain too, so I was really interesting. Despite the heavy sedation, I could still work on software as well as I could completely fine. I think I've also written software in my sleep before, actually sleepwalking out of my bed and using my machine. The machine was on when I woke up, but I couldn't tell what I did.

10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)

Kind heart? Bah, it takes a fiery heart~!

11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?

It's very time consuming.

12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?

You can use the computer in maximum potential, using it to accelerate anything you could do with your mind.

13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?

Usually no one else, but when I do it's with people who aren't quite programmers if at all. Hence why they hire my help. Let me tell you it's important to learn how to work with non-programmers.

14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?

You know better than to ask this question.

15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?

I did two things heavily when I was young (and still try to do when I finally finish my homework and work), play lots of video games and work on lots of video games. Computers are something that can nearly define my existence. I find it fun. A rarity among normal working software engineers- they tend to do it because the money is good. That's the answer most of them give me. The only other people I know who do this for fun are all right here at Dream.in.code.

16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?

I think "love" is too weak a word.
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#10 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 09:48 PM

WTF! The lounge has gone non-satirical on a topic, that's the point where I leave.
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#11 nK0de  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 28 April 2012 - 10:05 PM

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?
After finishing school which is back in 2009, I had 2 options to choose from. Civil Engineering and Software Engineering. Always liked computers so chose Software. I always feel like I was late into the game. Wish I started programming sooner.

2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?
hm...started off learning the basics from video tutorials and ebooks. and some coursework.

3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?
MCTS and another small crash course on developing database application with VB.NET.

4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?
Currently I'm doing the degree in Management Information Systems.

5. What is the best part of computer programming?
Learning new stuff all the time and getting a program you wrote to finally work.

6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?
eh...nothing comes to mind.

7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?
I'm no pro to give advise but first learn the fundamentals. And keep at it. Keep learning. And chose software engineering if you have a passion for it. 'Cause I know many of my friends started it too but halfway through they cracked. Programming is kinda hard at some points but its even harder if you don't like to do it.

8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?
Depends on whether you're employed or not. Currently I'm not working so staying at home. I have pet projects going on which I started as learning exercises so I work on them all day. With movie breaks in between.

9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?
I've been programming for not more than 1 and a half years. In that time nothing memorable happened for me though.

10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)
Patience and Perseverance.

11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?
lack of sleep.

12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?
Can woo the ladies easily

13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?
I don't understand this question.

14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?
Depends on your position and where you work.

15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?
Mosta the time, I'd say.

16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?
I fucking love it!!!
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#12 turboscrew  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 29 April 2012 - 01:41 AM

I'm a middle-aged man with quite some work-years in the field - mostly embedded real-time.

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1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?


At somewhere half-way of highschool in mid 70's

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2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?


There was nothing much to do. At the time, there were no machines in the price range in my reach, and not so many books either.

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3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?

In 1983 I started in Tampere University of Technology. I was planning to go into technical physics, but it seemed that I would learn how to calculate this and that, but never really got to understand the phenomena. It didn't suit me, so I had to change my major. I went for software engineering, because I spent all nights at the terminal anyway with friends.

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4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?

The tech. university was a pretty good start, but the social environment was far more important (an IT club within the uni). That's where I grew into the SW-world of thinking.

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5. What is the best part of computer programming?

Programming is a game where you always have an opponent (=task) to slightly beat your skills.

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6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?

More computer science and growing into the field.

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7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?

Socialize with other SW developers, especially more experienced ones. Read CS-books and try different languages - especially languages with different basic paradigm (or Gestalt). TRy a block-structured language (Ada, C, Pascal,...) a stack language (Forth, Postscript,...), Maybe lisp or scheme, some (simple) assembly, Some linear language (Fortran, Basic, ...) and so on. Take good looks to HW too.

Don't dream of fat paychecks.

If working in the field, don't be surprised if you get replaced by cheaper labor in far east or (maybe in the future) africa.

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8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?

Depends. Sometimes months of writing documents, sometimes months of writing code, sometimes months of fault finding.

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9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?

There are many such things, but far too long stories to put here.

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10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)

Patience, passion, logical thinking and frustration tolerance.
There may be months that you have to do difficult stuff or totally useless documents that you are not at least interested. It just needs to be done, because some boss or client has decided so.

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11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?

Finding time for your own projects and time to sleep.

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12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?

So many gadgets are processor controlled, so you can understand how they work better than others. You also become easily the support person to your local community and relatives.

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13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?

Most of the time I work alone, but keep close to all my colleagues at work. That's also because I tend to have somewhat special assignments. I'll be there when the system crashes leaving no sign about what caused that.

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14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?

Less than an engineer in any other field, but usually more than a cleaning lady that is illegal immigrant.

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15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?

A couple of times in a month for an hour or so. Partly for fun and partly because my curiosity doesn't leave me alone.

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16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?

MUCH. As a professional - not so much, but I really don't know what else I would rather do.

This post has been edited by turboscrew: 29 April 2012 - 03:16 AM

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#13 seymorevenue  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:03 AM

Thanks so much for all the responses I'm really learning a lot from them. There's something else I'd like to know,
What are the first projects you worked on as a computer programmer. Did you start making games, animations, websites, or assignments?
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#14 nK0de  Icon User is offline

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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:35 AM

Hello World
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Re: Are there any professional programmers i can interview?

Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:41 AM

1. When did you first realize you wanted to go into computer programming?

When I was 16, programming in Visual Basic 5 for the first time, in high school. It was a whole new world of awesome.

2. After you realized this, what did you do to prepare yourself for computer programming?

I bought a lot of computing books.. my room in my parents house is still stacked to the rafters with computing books. I also went online and read as much relevant material as I could. I taught myself C during a summer holiday when I was 16/17; I think that was a good preparation.

3. What type of training or schooling did you have to complete in order to do computer programming?

I earned a BSc in Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence from a top 10 university here in the UK. That helped make me employable, but really it was all the volunteering and self-learning that I did which prepared me properly for software development.

4. How much time did it take to complete the training/schooling associated with computer programming?

I graduated and took my first full-time job in software development when I was 22.

5. What is the best part of computer programming?

Because of my interest in artificial intelligence, I like automating things. Getting the computer to do repetitive routine tasks is great, and frees you up to do more interesting things.

6. If you could change anything about computer programming, what would it be and why?

Universities and colleges need to teach programming or software engineering as a more practical discipline. Too many graduates don't have a clue about what it takes to program software for a living.

7. What suggestions could you give to high school students who are interested in the computer programming field?

Do a lot of self-study. Don't expect your education to make you a good software developer. Use your own free time to work on software projects.

8. How does a typical day for you go in computer programming?

I get up, walk to work, spend an hour catching up on my emails and browsing forums like this one. Then I will work on the project I'm assigned to for a few hours. This involves systems engineering.. a lot of SSHing into machines, checking log files, checking processes have been started, installing software, configuring software, watching the results of my actions on the TV screen on my desk. Sometimes I will check out some source code and make an edit in the code, and check it back in. During this period someone will probably interrupt me to ask a question or two. At lunch I will have a meeting where I tell the project manager how things are going. Then it is back to work for the afternoon. My job role is more systems engineering or configuration and deployment engineering than it is software development. Although I like to write as much code as possible at work, and at home.

9. Could you tell me about one your most interesting memories from computer programming?

It's all interesting to me, but nothing in particular stands out as a good anecdote.

10. Aside from schooling/training, what does it take to do computer programming? (i.e. kind heart, strong stomach, etc.)

Patience, enthusiasm to the point of obsession, the ability to concentrate for long periods, and attention to detail.

11. What is the hardest part of being/becoming a computer programmer?

Having to estimate work. This is the most difficult thing for me.

12. What are some benefits of being a computer programmer?

Money.. lots of it. Having a job which you're actually enthusiastic about.

13. Who do you work with as a computer programmer?

Mostly non-technical people such as project managers, product owners.. so you have to be prepared to translate technical jargon into easy to understand English.

14. How much does a computer programmer get paid?

In comparison to the average wage in my city I would say I am very well paid, and can afford a luxury apartment and a very good standard of living.

15. How often do you work in your free time? Is it for fun?

I am wary of programming too much in my free time these days, lest I get burnt out. But I do program a lot in my spare time for fun.

16. How much do you love being a computer programmer?

Lots :)
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