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So what's the choice? To code as a job or to ditch the job and code as a hobby?
Pretty much, at least for me.
Chris Maunder wrote:
What if the hobby grows to become the job?
That's how I wound up in the field in the first place. =)
Chris Maunder wrote:
What if it's not the job but the tasks within the job that suck? Maybe a different job? Different group or environment or technology or just a different challenge?
A good question. For me the answer came by way of experience. I had done a lot of different kinds of work and I found the kind of work I used to enjoy, I didn't anymore. I tried after that to go 100% telecommute (change of pace and environment) and worked in a few different areas.
It wasn't really the technology. I replied somewhere else on this thread that part of it was the creative process for me is very emotional, personal, and artistic, so it's hard I think, for me to keep selling off pieces of myself, especially when it's being used for things that are well, banal.
I've explained the concept to artist friends of mine and they get it. With other people it has been hit or miss. My work is very personal to me. It's part of me.
I don't know if that's weird to look at software that way - at least at that level - but there it is. That's a big part i think of the reason I don't do it anymore for money - absent my madness, which is another issue
When I was growin' up, I was the smartest kid I knew. Maybe that was just because I didn't know that many kids. All I know is now I feel the opposite.
the creative process for me is very emotional, personal, and artistic
It's interesting you say that. I speak to a lot of companies about how to talk to software developers and at a basic level many have no idea what a developer looks like (not that there's "a" developer mould we all fit into). I talk a lot about how software development isn't a science, it's an art. We're often creating bespoke pieces of code just like old furniture makers would: each leg of the chair, each knob on the drawer is often custom made, hand sanded, polished up carefully and checked by eye-balling it.
We're a doomed profession, no doubt about it, but while it lasts it's one of the most creative outlets I can think of.
Happened to me the other way round: I have somewhat always liked coding and, well, designing software, but it was a rather insignificant hobby until I landed my current programming job which made me enjoy DYI electronics for realsies. Now I'm an avid DYI hobbyist, thanks to my job.
I’ve been retired now for almost 8 years. I spent the last 15+ years preceding my retirement as a consultant (contractor), working for banks, specializing in lending applications, commercial and mortgage lending. I spent the previous 30 years working for three major banks, specializing in lending applications. As a consultant, I was able to charge upwards of $175.00 per hour, always triple digit rates, expenses included. Most assignments lasted about 6 months. Although the longest was 2 ½ years. I’ve worked on every continent except Antarctica. I enjoyed the work and especially the money.
I mention the foregoing not to brag, but to point out that I didn’t have much variety in my specialty domain nor much choice in computer languages, yet made worthwhile career. Banks still have applications in COBOL, but many other ancillary applications in languages popular for the time: dBase, Clipper, and Visual Basic 6. I sold my time and my expertise, which many companies were willing to pay my rate and terms most often without question.
I studied changes in lending laws as well as kept up with computer languages popular for the time. Becoming the best at what I did made me known as an expert in my domain. Computer languages , most often weren’t even a consideration.
I enjoy programming, I’ve been studying C# and SQL Server. Being able to exploit software features wasn’t an objective, providing a solution to a problem was.
Early in my career my manager gave me the following advice: Work to live, not live to work. There’s just too much more in life than twiddling bits.
"I controlled my laughter and simple said "No,I am very busy,so I can't write any code for you". The moment they heard this all the smiling face turned into a sad looking face and one of them farted. So I had to leave the place as soon as possible." - Mr.Prakash One Fine Saturday. 24/04/2004
I was being a little naughty in not having an overly literal literal i.e "in a spin about planetoid" but I figured that people would know that it was likely to be a moon.
I was going to add a hint (as I'm on the road tomorrow) that the "plantoid" would have been "planet" a few years back as poor old Pluto has been demoted (rather unfairly to my mind but we'll save that particular hot topic for the Soapbox, where it belongs)!
Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect. - Mark Twain