9 Replies - 1057 Views - Last Post: 13 September 2013 - 11:39 AM

#1 justinoswalt  Icon User is offline

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Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 12 September 2013 - 03:14 PM

Just looking for the opinion of people who are much wiser and more experienced than myself.
Is it better to become familiar with many languages, or a master of one??
More specifically desktop languages.
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#2 Lemur  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 12 September 2013 - 03:51 PM

When starting out you'd be a complete fool to limit to one language and one way of doing things. Companies want fast learners and people that can pick up new tech fast, and nothing raises a red flag faster than only knowing the one language your College happened to teach.

Generalize to start, have a wide base of skills that you can build upon and only specialize in a job unless you have very good reason to. What would be that reason to? You'll definitely know it when you get to that point.
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#3 justinoswalt  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 08:41 AM

View PostLemur, on 12 September 2013 - 03:51 PM, said:

When starting out you'd be a complete fool to limit to one language and one way of doing things. Companies want fast learners and people that can pick up new tech fast, and nothing raises a red flag faster than only knowing the one language your College happened to teach.

Generalize to start, have a wide base of skills that you can build upon and only specialize in a job unless you have very good reason to. What would be that reason to? You'll definitely know it when you get to that point.


Thank you for the insight. I was kind of leaning that direction especially because a couple of the languages I'm learning have very similar syntax anyway. (C# and Java) I just wasn't sure if I was making a rookie mistake by taking on more than one language instead of focusing on learning one really well.
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#4 cfoley  Icon User is online

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 08:55 AM

As a complete beginner, you want to focus one one language. This is because you are learning the fundamentals of programming and the differences between languages is a source of distraction and confusion.

When you are happy that you can program and can complete some projects yourself, I think it's best to expand your horizons to get some knowledge about different platforms, technologies and languages.

When you are working on a project, you will have the chance for deeper learning of the technologies involved.
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#5 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 09:05 AM

It'll help if you learn languages that in different paradigms.
Functional Procedural Object-Oriented
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#6 xclite  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 09:39 AM

T Shaped - master of a couple of things, capable of many.
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#7 justinoswalt  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 10:20 AM

View Postcfoley, on 13 September 2013 - 08:55 AM, said:

As a complete beginner, you want to focus one one language. This is because you are learning the fundamentals of programming and the differences between languages is a source of distraction and confusion.

When you are happy that you can program and can complete some projects yourself, I think it's best to expand your horizons to get some knowledge about different platforms, technologies and languages.

When you are working on a project, you will have the chance for deeper learning of the technologies involved.


I'm not a COMPLETE beginner. I have already touched on quite a few languages. But it's been very basic "beginner's guide" type of exposure. Building simple lists, db archives, calculators, etc. It just seems like I'm spinning my wheels and getting nowhere when I'm doing the same basic projects in 4.. 5.. 6 different languages. I'd like to focus on one (or even two languages) and really get into the meat and potatos of it, but I don't want to limit myself either.

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 13 September 2013 - 09:05 AM, said:

It'll help if you learn languages that in different paradigms.
Functional Procedural Object-Oriented

I've focused mostly on OOP because it's what I see the most call for.
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#8 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 10:29 AM

Understanding a Functional approach will help you understand LINQ.
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#9 justinoswalt  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 10:47 AM

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 13 September 2013 - 10:29 AM, said:

Understanding a Functional approach will help you understand LINQ.

Excellent! Thank you. That is one area that I want to explore, but I've been nervous because I've heard it can get a bit confusing. I'll make sure I have a good understanding of Functional programming before I try to tackle LINQ.
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#10 Ryano121  Icon User is offline

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Re: Jack of all trades or master of one?

Posted 13 September 2013 - 11:39 AM

It's perhaps not necessary to have a complete understanding of functional programming before starting with LINQ. A much better approach would be to have some kind of understanding of functional programming and then further your knowledge by using/messing around with LINQ itself.
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