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Becoming a developer in 2022: Progress thread

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Vinz

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Speaking personally we'd look to hire a junior to pass on boilerplate or low-level tasks and free up Senior Dev's to meet KPI's.

This means at minimum Juniors should be able to come in with the ability to understand good coding practices, should have left tutorial hell and should be comfortable getting up to speed being able to make small commits to source with guidance from their assigned team lead (dev-ops stuff).

The reality that I see of many boot-camp style Juniors is they'd struggle to make it past the first sprint in a small scrum, and therefore many of them end up being used and abused at sweat-shops until they reach breaking point.

Code:
>How does it change being a junior vs becoming a senior ?

Reponsibility, complexity of tasks, ability to contribute in retrospective meetings and of course reducing errors are really the differences. It's not usually going to be a massive change but if you have a crunch time office style it can be stressful, and the expectations on high quality code should increase as your seniority increases.

The type of work you do depends on the company you work for and if you're developing new bleeding edge intergration or maintaining current systems etc, and thus the stress varies. The major change I'd say is the ability to think and conceptualize what you're actually doing and why you're doing it and understand concepts such as technical debt etc.

Code:
What are your predictions for the future ? Will the "bearishness" continue ? Will we have a "reset" about the hype that surrounds developer jobs ?

Job's aren't going away, and there will be a consistent need for good quality developers, the entry level is highly competitive now though and you have a lot of graduates struggling to get a decent job for months on end.

Do some people manage to bootcamp their way into jobs? Yes, but this is also slowing significantly as companies weigh up the costs and risks - similar is happening to QA testers, with a lot of testing now being done inter-discipline with developers (test as you go) as the cost of hiring additional testers isn't worth it post COVID.

Do be careful of people telling you that it's an ever-green field. COVID has meant that even more companies moved to hiring cheaper talent abroad and it's no longer possible to say that those developers are lower quality or more difficult to work with as a lot of organization has been done in these countries - meaning that you can contact agencies and get access to high quality, native c2 level speakers that produce good code for the fraction of the cost.

The bottom line is that if you study hard, produce a good portfolio then you will get a job - but the golden age has IMO gone.

What most people want to really know is - Would I recommend people to study and become a developer?

And the answer to this depends on what you think is happening in the world. Do you believe there is a forthcoming restructuring of the economy and a quasi-slavery system that you don't want to be part of?

If you do believe in this - then you need to also realize you do not have the time it would take you to develop the skills you would need to effectively compete in the market.

I would say to any young person looking to buy their freedom now - use what you have, learn enough about software and get into software sales.

Good sales guys are worth their weight in gold and are treated as such - the nice thing too is that you can take on multiple clients and build a huge network quickly, opening a lot of opportunities for travel, jobs etc when done correctly - allowing you to pivot into high scarcity fields down the road.
Wow. Thanks for the response
That's a lot to take in and I will probably have to read it some more times.
I will jump directly to the last question for now. I see that many bootcamps are forming developers in months, which don't seem to get the long term picture like you said.
Maybe I'm mistaken, but I also see a lot of focus on web development in these bootcamps
I also see that the tech field is creating many new jobs and the skills required. Like blockchain, AI, handling data, right ?
I sure do hope the world is going into a situation where it demands high quality developers in these new fields
Also I don't believe anyone should have a sales career. Don't mistake me, I do have a sales job right now, I don't hate it, but I don't see myself doing it for the rest of my life.
Maybe it I had to sell for my own business I would gladly do it though
I would like to remain in tech, and hope to find some field where , with good timing, I can make myself desired.
 
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TheKingOfMadrid

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Wow. Thanks for the response
That's a lot to take in and I will probably have to read it some more times.
I will jump directly to the last question for now. I see that many bootcamps are forming developers in months, which don't seem to get the long term picture like you said.
Maybe I'm mistaken, but I also see a lot of focus on web development in these bootcamps
I also see that the tech field is creating many new jobs and the skills required. Like blockchain, AI, handling data, right ?
I sure do hope the world is going into a situation where it demands high quality developers in these new fields
Also I don't believe anyone should have a sales career. Don't mistake me, I do have a sales job right now, I don't hate it, but I don't see myself doing it for the rest of my life.
Maybe it I had to sell for my own business I would gladly do it though
I would like to remain in tech, and hope to find some field where , with good timing, I can make myself desired.
So to reply quickly - the first point i'd say is that you're probably in the wrong kind of sales job - there are many types of sales and not all are equal - that said it's true most people don't do it forever.

Just to ball-park you though, the sales guys in my last proprietary software company regularly spent 3-6 month stints in Japan, Germany and other EU countries all covered by the company - which is a lot of chances to meet people and set up pivots. Their job was to procure & set up leads, do consultations and demo's and essentially infiltrate the foreign market.

Web dev is taught most because it's the easiest thing to do - it's incredibly easy to LARP as a competent web-dev when most of what you need is copy and pastable.

Web 3.0 is interesting and positioning yourself for that is ideal so long as you have the stomach for the work. Difficult to make it fastlane in that space imo - but for a wage I think that's the way to go.
 

Jeannen

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Well, I did it, I just realized my first web app! The reader is almost fully functional, it just needs a few tweaks and a better UI, but it works.

Here is a screenshot:
1654216411631.png

That's only for the "website" version tho, now I want to make it a chrome extension that can "Augment" any page to be read faster.
 

Jeannen

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Some courses were on a discount so I bought a pack of 4 for $50
  • Javascript (70h)
  • Advanced web development (60h)
  • Advanced data scrapping (10h)
  • Machine learning & AI (40h)
That's going to costs me 180h in total, but I think it's worth it. It will probably take 3 months before finishing them all, more likely 5-6 since I'll hit roadblocks at some points and will do training projects.

I'll start with the machine learning one, seems like a crazy interesting topic, and highly valued.

Also, the app I made is available here if you want to try it: Augmented Reader
 
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richstone.io

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Look into the Odin Project. It's a free web dev curriculum, which I got a job from.

That's a good one if you are aiming for web development. But OP is more into cool stuff at the moment like data, AI, and games ;)
 

Jeannen

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Look into the Odin Project. It's a free web dev curriculum, which I got a job from.
I heard about it, I was considering between this one and another to get started, but I ended up going for Python as it has more practical uses (AI/Data)

That's a good one if you are aiming for web development. But OP is more into cool stuff at the moment like data, AI, and games ;)
Yep!
 
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Jeannen

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Never though I'd one day understand something like that:
1654478665567.png

I've always been a bad student in maths in school, and so, I thought "Hey, it's just not for me".
I even remember one of my teacher telling me I'll never be rich. The irony, a few years later I was already making two or three times her salary.

Anyway, to dive deeper into AI and shits, I need a better understanding of maths, so, whenever I see something like that in the course, I have to dive into it and make research to understand.
So far, it's not super complicated, I understand the concepts. Can't wait to go to the first practical applications!!
 

Vinnland

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Bro, courses will not really teach you to code.

I learned to code over the last 12 months by writing software. I did courses as supplementary learning but I mainly used books if I was consuming.

The thing about coding is... the question is... "can you actually create something on your own, and do you understand it?"

The good thing about python is that you can create scripts.

If you wrote 100 scripts, you will learn more about programming, faster.

In the last year, I have learned: Javascript/Node and Clojure. But more importantly, I have an army of mini software working for me in my agency.

Build bro. Build.
 

richstone.io

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Never though I'd one day understand something like that:
View attachment 43821

I've always been a bad student in maths in school, and so, I thought "Hey, it's just not for me".
I even remember one of my teacher telling me I'll never be rich. The irony, a few years later I was already making two or three times her salary.

Anyway, to dive deeper into AI and shits, I need a better understanding of maths, so, whenever I see something like that in the course, I have to dive into it and make research to understand.
So far, it's not super complicated, I understand the concepts. Can't wait to go to the first practical applications!!
I think you underestimate yourself! If someone explained this to you, you’d grok it within a few minutes, especially having dipped into coding now. The screenshot shows a sum loop symbol on the left that sets n at 0 for the first iteration, then 1, etc. Each time you put n into the equation and sum the result with the next iteration. Done ;)
 
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Gareth Stretton

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Dear Jeannen,

Congratulations on committing to developing a valuable skill. Others have given some excellent advise, much of which I agree with.

My advise is:
1. Try to develop enough skills to sell a product or a service. For example, create a website that can accept payments. With this foundation, any skill you build can immediately be deployed to make money. Some developers are excellent at doing very specific things but couldn't sell anything by themselves. You (should) want to be able to build "end-to-end solutions" by yourself.
2. Learn the fundamentals and what experts advocate. When I was young and "under-educated", I wrote what I thought was great code (solved challenging problems) but in terrible ways (poorly implemented). Simply put, "you don't know what you don't know" and in the beginning, you know very little. With a solid foundation of the basics (data structures, design patterns, etc.) you can easily support and extend your creations. You'll develop new ways of thinking about problems. Keep learning. Knowledge gives you power to overcome complicated problems and create even more ingenious solutions. It also saves you time.
3. This may be booed here, but I think there is value in working for a company (if only for a limited time). You'll get feedback, learn what is relevant, use tools you didn't know existed, and be supported. In my career, I initially chose to work for a company that would give wide exposure to problems and responsibilities. This gave me confidence and I developed a broad range of skills. Treat it as a short-term apprenticeship ... and leave when you feel you have a solid foundation. Maybe there is another way to have this experience too. The key thing is external feedback.
4. Notetaking! Always look for a better way to record notes. Tech is unending learning. You commit to memory what you use frequently, and unfortunately forget many useful things, and you will have to re-learn them. (At the moment I'm a fan of Obsidian.md and the commander plugin.)

Feel free to shoot me a message. Happy to give book recommendations or feedback on challenges you are facing.

Good luck on your journey!
 

Jeannen

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Bro, courses will not really teach you to code.

I learned to code over the last 12 months by writing software. I did courses as supplementary learning but I mainly used books if I was consuming.

The thing about coding is... the question is... "can you actually create something on your own, and do you understand it?"

The good thing about python is that you can create scripts.

If you wrote 100 scripts, you will learn more about programming, faster.

In the last year, I have learned: Javascript/Node and Clojure. But more importantly, I have an army of mini software working for me in my agency.

Build bro. Build.
I agree

I use courses to get the core concepts and possibilities, but the only way I really learn is by doing stuff. The app I made last week (augmented-reader.com) mainly served as a project to test my knowledge of Python and Flask, I plan to do a few ones for every new thing/language I learn, so the next one is going to be an AI I imagine
 

Jeannen

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I think you underestimate yourself! If someone explained this to you, you’d grok it within a few minutes, especially having dipped into coding now. The screenshot shows a sum loop symbol on the left that sets n at 0 for the first iteration, then 1, etc. Each time you put n into the equation and sum the result with the next iteration. Done ;)
Yes, the "scary" part is the greek stuff, but it's just a "while" loop actually
 
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Jeannen

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Dear Jeannen,

Congratulations on committing to developing a valuable skill. Others have given some excellent advise, much of which I agree with.

My advise is:
1. Try to develop enough skills to sell a product or a service. For example, create a website that can accept payments. With this foundation, any skill you build can immediately be deployed to make money. Some developers are excellent at doing very specific things but couldn't sell anything by themselves. You (should) want to be able to build "end-to-end solutions" by yourself.
2. Learn the fundamentals and what experts advocate. When I was young and "under-educated", I wrote what I thought was great code (solved challenging problems) but in terrible ways (poorly implemented). Simply put, "you don't know what you don't know" and in the beginning, you know very little. With a solid foundation of the basics (data structures, design patterns, etc.) you can easily support and extend your creations. You'll develop new ways of thinking about problems. Keep learning. Knowledge gives you power to overcome complicated problems and create even more ingenious solutions. It also saves you time.
3. This may be booed here, but I think there is value in working for a company (if only for a limited time). You'll get feedback, learn what is relevant, use tools you didn't know existed, and be supported. In my career, I initially chose to work for a company that would give wide exposure to problems and responsibilities. This gave me confidence and I developed a broad range of skills. Treat it as a short-term apprenticeship ... and leave when you feel you have a solid foundation. Maybe there is another way to have this experience too. The key thing is external feedback.
4. Notetaking! Always look for a better way to record notes. Tech is unending learning. You commit to memory what you use frequently, and unfortunately forget many useful things, and you will have to re-learn them. (At the moment I'm a fan of Obsidian.md and the commander plugin.)

Feel free to shoot me a message. Happy to give book recommendations or feedback on challenges you are facing.

Good luck on your journey!

1. Totally agree

2. Yes, rn I'm discovering a whole new world haha, I have to learn about data science and math to be able to make proper stuff with AI, it's going to take a while for me to be comfortable with that since I haven't done studies, but it's essential, so, no choice.

3. There is clearly value in this. Especially since programming, in general, is very well paid. I won't personally be able to do it since I already have a business running that gives me a good income and I'm remote-based, but for someone without anything I don't think creating a company right away would be the wise choice. Not excluding working for a company to the side of the conditions are flexible tho.

4. Those apps looks amazing, thanks for the reco, will be better than writing on my Notes app lol


For now, the big challenge is to build the bridge between what I know and what I need to know to start making projects related to AI. Since my course seems to cover most of the basics (according the reviews and program at least), it's mainly a matter of time and discipline hehe, I'll get the first roadblocks once I'll start getting my hands dirty
 

Jeannen

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I'm now comfortable making AI that can make an analysis of "basic" data (organized data like a spreadsheet, to predict values)
From what I learned so far, the concept of machine learning itself is not that complicated, the hard part is to gather data and make them usable since computers can only deal with numbers.

I mentioned a project to a client I have for my marketing agency, he was extremely interested and told me to make this priority #1.
The problem here is to get the data. If I have them, I should be able to make a great product.
 
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alexkuzmov

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I'm now comfortable making AI that can make an analysis of "basic" data (organized data like a spreadsheet, to predict values)
From what I learned so far, the concept of machine learning itself is not that complicated, the hard part is to gather data and make them usable since computers can only deal with numbers.

I mentioned a project to a client I have for my marketing agency, he was extremely interested and told me to make this priority #1.
The problem here is to get the data. If I have them, I should be able to make a great product.
What is the problem with getting the data?

I`ve got a lot of experience with parsing(scraping, crawling) and storing data for analysis using PHP and Python, maybe I can help.
 

Jeannen

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What is the problem with getting the data?

I`ve got a lot of experience with parsing(scraping, crawling) and storing data for analysis using PHP and Python, maybe I can help.
The problem is that you need to get quantity and quality data, it's not always easy to find
(and I see lots of biz potential in there; getting good data to train AIs)

For example, for the project I have in mind, I'll need both user data and company data, then regroup them to train the AI.
Problem is, it's a data most users don't really want to share, and if they do, it might not be accurate
 

alexkuzmov

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The problem is that you need to get quantity and quality data, it's not always easy to find
(and I see lots of biz potential in there; getting good data to train AIs)

For example, for the project I have in mind, I'll need both user data and company data, then regroup them to train the AI.
Problem is, it's a data most users don't really want to share, and if they do, it might not be accurate
So lets go where the data is mostly accurate.
What kind of data for users and companies do you need?
Be specific and also share country of the data, language, stats, anything that comes to mind.
 
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Jeannen

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So lets go where the data is mostly accurate.
What kind of data for users and companies do you need?
Be specific and also share country of the data, language, stats, anything that comes to mind.

Well, I don't want to say disclose the exact things since this thread is public, but for the users, it would be personal attributes (stuff like age, sex, weight, income...). It only works if it's from customers, public data wouldn't fit here, since I need to link both user data with company data to get the "usable" data

The only way I see to do that properly is to "buy" data using coupons code. And even with that, they could lie about the sensitive stuff like incomes, weight...

For company data, it's sales per unit, return rate, etc., which I can easily get from the website
 

alexkuzmov

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Well, I don't want to say disclose the exact things since this thread is public, but for the users, it would be personal attributes (stuff like age, sex, weight, income...). It only works if it's from customers, public data wouldn't fit here, since I need to link both user data with company data to get the "usable" data

The only way I see to do that properly is to "buy" data using coupons code. And even with that, they could lie about the sensitive stuff like incomes, weight...

For company data, it's sales per unit, return rate, etc., which I can easily get from the website
You want to link the customers of a company to the company data?
 

Jeannen

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You want to link the customers of a company to the company data?
Yep, but the company data would be per customer

(Sales for the specific client, products they ordered, etc...)
 
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Jeannen

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The course I had on Machine Learning started pretty well (structured data), but the second part (unstructured data/deep learning) is garbage, so I'll stop the course and learn on my own, as I do not want to waste time.

I'm going to look for simple projects to get started on Neural networks to learn.
 

Jeannen

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Learning:

So, I was looking for AI projects, and I ended up taking another course, but this time focusing on the theory and "math" part. Unlike the previous course where I mainly learned to use some pre-made libraries, this one showed me the mathematical model behind AI. The course is made by one of the most influential people in the AI/Deep Learning field.

I struggled to understand the "pure math" part since I have 0 background so I had to make some research, but now I get a way better understanding of how it works from the inside out. There are 3 courses. First, one is supposed to take 3 weeks, I ate it in 3 days and even got a "graduation".
2nd one is taking one month, and I'm almost done with it. Then I'll have one last one and I should have a robust beginner level. Enough to make cool stuff with AI and actually understand what happens under the hood.

For anyone wondering, I'm doing it all day, every day from 8h to 21h with small breaks on dumb stuff (social media) to cool down my head, thus why I'm able to move quickly.

Building:
Other than that, I pitched a project idea to my client and he was pretty hyped. He actually asked me for a quote earlier today. The project isn't even started or anything, it was just an idea. Not sure I'll be able to execute, it since I need to find a way to gather "sensitive" data, but if I manage to do it, I might be up to something!

Predictions/Freelance:
There is a drop in sales on my client's website. KPIs are good, and it's supposed to be the very best month of the year. The only reason I see is simply people purchasing less because of the recession and fear. I told him some time ago it would happen, and it's happening now. I made a new strategy for him that include pivoting to a new positioning etc... But I won't go in-depth here since it's not really the subject.
 
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