I would also say it's not good for someone in your shoes: you'll learn much more and much faster if you're in the same room as experienced software developers.
Is this standard behavior for Chrome? I have my HN zoomed at 125% (2 steps up) and while it remembers it for all of this domain, none of the linked stuff is zoomed regardless of what kind of target window it opens in.
Breakes on some sites, but for most it zooms to up to 150%. When I make the browser smaller it might just zoom to less, depending on how well the site reflows.
Give it a go, if on mobile. You'll wonder how you lived without it.
[No affiliation. Just a happy camper]
I use this: https://userstyles.org/styles/22794/a-dark-hacker-news
Makes some of the font larger. You could modify that sheet.
Some news organizations will have their own staff checking results, especially in areas where it is known that the results will be slow and the results are going to be within polling error margins.
You'd think the data could be crowd-sourced more effectively, but private citizens get the data more slowly for a few reasons ... First is that there is red tape involved in obtaining the data (i.e. forms to fill out, fees to pay and it all must be done ahead of time) and second is that after-hours early access to data is just plain limited logistically. If it could be efficiently delivered to a large quantity of people, it would be presented online.
There are a few areas where the government decides that it's more efficient to let private parties distribute data, and it's generally pretty good business to become one of those parties. NMVTIS data comes to mind immediately (carfax and it's competitors), but there are many similar instances.
"Shortly before the polls close, over 4,000 stringers report to county election centers. When the first polls close, theyll be ready to start phoning in the raw vote as it is reported by the counties. Theyll place their calls to AP election centers around the country.
At the centers, a total of over 800 vote entry clerks will answer those calls, and walk each stringer through a dialogue as they enter the number of precincts reporting and the candidates votes into our election night system. "
They pay $50 for someone to go to the county and report the election results. There's an iphone, android, and mobile web site, as well as a call center that takes that input.
Honestly, it was a really fun evening in the middle of nowhere Ohio...
Disclaimer: I work in philly's city government. It's really cool, and we'll soon be hiring a product manager (for beta.phila.gov), a data engineer (for open data), and a front-end/wordpress developer.
In the UK at least we aren't meant to release the results until the returning officer reads them out so waiting for any of the above while showing a live feed of a result would mean we don't have the result to show on screen immediately. For this reason you would likely also have people in the studio watching the live feeds from counts and entering the numbers which would then be double checked against the official feed later. This can be tricky when the result is drowned out by cheering from a crowd of supporters! ie "Labout party, John Candidate 22 thousand... <WOOOOOO - YEAAAH> ...hundred and 1 votes"
The focus for news orgs is getting these results out accurately before their competitors, no one wants to be slow to announce the results.
In Illinois I registered to vote well before the deadline. I showed up to cast my ballot but my name wasn't in the "database." The folks managing the polling station had to manually re-enter all my details into an Android tablet. While this was happening, I took out my phone and scanned the WiFi network of the church I was in. I assume the tablets were connected via wifi. I saw no other connection to the tablet besides a power connection. To my surprised the WIFI was running WEP. Hmm, this day in age you would think WEP would be default=off. This was at a local Church too. So perhaps the tablets use cellular data plans?
They get all my PII data entered, I get my ballot, fill it out, and pass it through a machine. The machine is in the corner of the building in a large box so I can't tell if it's hardwired to some network or using the wifi.
Later that day (about an hour later after re-entering my details into the Android tablet) I went to the Illinois voter registration web site to look up my name and I can find my details.
Anyone have any information on the tablet software? Who writes it? How it's transmitted and stored? What about the electronic ballot counting machines? Are the phoning home some where?
The whole setup seems sketchy to me.
As an aside: I know a couple people who have homes in different states and claim they can cast multiple votes by driving/flying to the state where they have 2nd home to cast a 2nd ballot.
In addition to all those, there is Oy ve Otesi, a non-profit does the entire thing with only volunteer work. Their coverage is pretty minimal in rural areas, though.
We transfer and process them, for national races we we the AP Election API
basically it says it is based on exit poll. and it is costly, so many media companies formed an entity called NationalElection Pool to do the report.
And they also hired a company called Edison Research to do the exit poll.
1. Walking around asking people what the fuck is going on
To wake is pain; I long for the release of death
The rest of the week we stick to good old micromanagement. Jira is great for that.
Trello also works well alongside GitHub issues.
NLTK is always a good starting point:http://www.nltk.org
I also wrote a 3-part article leveraging OpenNLP with Clojure:
If you're interesting in applying NLP without necessarily having theoretical background, wit.ai offers some really impressive features.
Course also offers a good course:
It would be helpful to have some background in Machine Learning. For a good introductory course with a mix of mathematical background, see https://see.stanford.edu/Course/CS229
NLP in the more modern systems is backed by deep neural nets. Here's a course on NLP using deep learning:https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLIiVRB6G_w0i-uOoS6cDh...
You can also checkout https://github.com/vseloved/cl-nlp. It is an NLP toolkit in Common Lisp. Vsevolod the project owner is a great guy to work with. I had contributed with some minor bug fixes, tests, documentation more than a year back, hence the mention of Vsevolod.
You could also think on the alternative lines of contributing to an open source project in NLP and building an application on top of it. Talking to any such project owner for expected sample apps might help, as they can go into that project gallery and you get to level up your skills. Hope this helps.
I used pocketsphinx (trained with specially limited vocab) for speech to text, my own home grown Zork-esque parser for "understanding" the text and generating responses, and pico2wav for text to speech for the responses. That's described in a bit more detail here: https://scaryreasoner.wordpress.com/2016/05/14/speech-recogn...
- Coursera's old NLP course by Michael Collins, Columbia Univ. More of theory and concepts. It's discontinued now on coursera but the material is available at academictorrents. 
- NLP with Python and NLTK videos by sentdex . Mostly programming, but with useful nuggets of concepts introduced here and there.
 http://nltk.org http://nltk.org/book
The classic NLP textbook is
* Jurafsky, Martin: "Speech and Language Processing" (https://web.stanford.edu/~jurafsky/slp3/) -- already mentioned here: a very solid overview textbook to give you an idea about the field;
Should you be interested in statistical NLP (even if it probably isn't as sexy as it used to be), the classic there is:
* Manning, Schtze: "Foundations of Statistical Natural Language Processing" (http://nlp.stanford.edu/fsnlp/).
I'd recommend starting with the Kaggle Bag of Words tutorial.
It's relatively fast (after model load time) and quite feature-rich.
For eg., Betty  is quite an interesting project with both real-life use and practical NLP considerations, and is looking for new maintainers. (I'm not affiliated, just interested in NLP myself and have been itching to get into betty for some time.)
If you like thinking about game design, there's also the option of Interactive Fiction , NLP-involving ones are called parser-based fictions I believe. A recent FLOSS podcast episode with folks from the IF Tech Foundation was pretty interesting and illuminating regarding this area.
 https://github.com/pickhardt/betty http://iftechfoundation.org/frequently-asked-questions/
The NLTK approach may be dated, but it is easier to approach as an engineer, especially if this is a hobby. It will give you a good introduction to problems in the space.
The math heavy approaches may give better results long-term, but it will be a much longer time commitment, but this is probably more appropriate if you're trying to find a job.
You can also do interesting things with a small dataset and the free plans of APIs like Watson. E.g., I'm working on a search engine for standalone lectures - https://www.findlectures.com.
This is the textbook for the course: http://www.statmt.org/book/
Let the linguist design your first project. It should be something that they don't know how to solve, but have wanted to know.
Don't worry about if it is feasible. Go to local data meetups when you have enough exposure to form your first questions.
It points to NLTK as the framework of choice, and has links to a couple MOOCs and tutorials.
They are quick. This will give you an overview of classical NLP.
From there, you can dig more where you want.
Any chance of raising it out of grey-text territory?
A great start for the generalist software developer/engineer - http://matt.might.net/articles/what-cs-majors-should-know/
Docs may be 20, 30, 40 pages long, and out of those only 10 of those may be applicable, but you really can't know until you read them all. Read the manual.
I've been writing up all the mistakes I've made as a software engineer for the past 20 years so other programmers can avoid them. A lot of them fall into that second category, turns out. Some technical stuff too, of course. Check out https://softwareclown.com if you're interested.
He sent an internal email about politics and it backfired. It's not like he gave a press conference announcing the company was in financial trouble.
I won't do it again.
Al Jazeera English can be quite good (though be wary of some of it's Qatar biases), it tends to be excellent on Africa and Asia.
JFYI, Russia Today is a heavy propaganda TV network, sponsored by Russian government.
You could ask them to support RSS, I've found them to be surprising responsive.
I pay for the Financial Times, I blame reading Chomsky in college for that. Solid international coverage. Only subscription I have.
Guardian is nauseating at times, but I read it. NYT is a silly paywall. I deemed its flowery essays not worth paying for.
- ny times
This gives each countries official position and the delta between them is usually useful info.
I also use twitter for curated feeds, which can be useful.
The guardian and intercept are also pretty good. I no longer trust the economist. While obviously biased, I do like ZeroHedge
The man called out in response, "you are on the other side of the river!"
Specifically, this posts on working remotely from abroad, but most of the resources listed also have jobs in-person, too.
281 java positions, 182 c#, 91 c++
New ones coming in every day.
There is a lot of demand here for skilled developers, most positions are not for startups, but established business.
Software developer salary is typically lower than in the US, but then again, cost of living (as far as apartment rent goes(in Oslo)) is lower than in SV. C#/Java back-end salary usually range from 600,000 NOK (73 188 dollar, at the low end, not much experience, poor resume) to 1,000,000 NOK (121 980 dollar, senior).
The average developer salary in Oslo is at 106k (dollar). National average is 82k, most attractive jobs, and salaries, tend to be in Oslo.
I am an American living, working (as a freelance programmer) in Czech Republic -- good economy (especially Prague), low crime rate, low cost of living. Happy to answer questions.
You can filter by location, we have a couple of positions in Provo, Utah as well...
Otherwise, apply for jobs in Norwegian startups through this site:
Ps: SanomaNL is hiring in the Netherlands (senior fronted/backend python but Golang is creeping up/devops): https://github.com/sanoma/jobs/blob/master/README.md
For me, it's not worth moving. I was born here, and as a result I'm somewhat responsible for the actions my country takes as a whole. Moving doesn't change that. The grass looks greener on the other side, but other countries aren't really doing that well with human rights, LGBT issues, affordable housing, or constitutionally-protected free speech. No matter where you move, you're trading one bag of shit for another.
I'm French, long time ago as long as I was looking from France to work in the UK, about 9 out of 10 recruiters ignored me.
Once I landed in London and did the same search of jobs, interviews piled on me.
I'm not saying you can not find anything from remote and online, just saying it seems much much easier to find something once you are already in the country.
If you are interested in the startup scene, the best recruiters would probably be Talent Army
Just signup, get a call with a talent advocate so they know what you're looking for, and as soon as the next monday you're in. You will receive from 5 to 15 tailored job offers in less than 2 weeks. That's the easiest way around.
Germany is a rather good option for working abroad as getting a visa is pretty easy if you have a college degree and make a certain amount of money. They're pretty liberal about handing out something called the EU Blue Card. That's what I had when I was over there. You don't even need to do anything before you get there. All the paperwork happens when you're in the country. The trickiest part of the whole process is making sure you end up at a place when you get there that you can register at with the local government as you have to show your registration confirmation as part of the Blue Card process. If you can get registered and receive mail wherever you stay initially everything is pretty easy.
I am assuming however this is leaving the US for ... not-US locations
My suggestion would be to stay where you are, look for remote work opportunities that will give you the ability to losslessly change jobs until you found the work culture that suits.
And it also gives you opportunity to get involved in your local or state politics where you can make a genuine difference.
Just as Europe has a free-to-move labour force (for now!) the US has strong and increasingly independent States that look more and more like the engines of progressive change. California just approved marijuana for example.
Let the countries of the world deal with any changing trade and defence agreements. It's why they have diplomats.
NB - I am not meaning to be as patronising as I may be coming across
Startup Jobs in Madrid here:www.jobsmad.com
Very good for medium-long term consulting gigs in Europe
Easy Expat < This site contains international classified advertisements, discussion forums, and job listings for expatriates all over the world.
They will start you just about any Western Europe country on your first job / contract. After that rely on your network as agencies advertising there are not 1st tier in the supplier chain
Maybe this means civic tech organizations like Code for America that explicitly work on public sector projects. Maybe it means working for a political advocacy group like the EFF, or someone working on privacy-related projects to help protect our civil liberties. Either way, helping improve things domestically seems like a nobler option than running away.
It only lists Tech job offers from companies willing to recruit internationally and to sponsor working visa if necessary. It's free. I co-created that website. Enjoy :)
Check out our jobs board: app.vanhack.com/jobboard and shoot me an email with any questions: email@example.com
It's relatively easy to Google for expat websites for any specific country. The salaries are generally lower, but so is the cost of housing.
Our company Smartly.io is also hiring. 3-year-old startup, 100 employees, 30+ engineers, profitable, some real scalability issues to be solved (already 200+ servers), and based in Helsinki. :)
Just signup, get a call with a talent advocate so they know what you're looking for, then you'll receive from 5 to 15 tailored job offers in less than 2 weeks. That's the easiest way around.
We are focused on AI and deep learning, and we are hiring research scientists, research software engineers, devops engineers, etc.
I moved here last year, as an internal transfer. It's been pretty good overall.
US is awful visa-wise, considering that much of the cap is filled up in a day by Indian body shops; ensuring thus that one can at best start in October, and set out on this magical journey 6-12 months ahead.
Also StackOverflow Jobs has a number of openings across whole world, many of them with salaries.
However some big companies with lazy HRs mainly put job offers on their own websites and nowhere else.
We're also happy to support with relocation.
Please contact me (email in profile) if you're interested in moving out here.
Seriously, ask your social network contacts in the countries that interest you. Demand for good developers is high everywhere, odds are there are openings at their companies.
Don't just go and browse job offers on random websites, that's inefficient and a lot of good offers are not there anyway. Another option would be to subscribe to something like https://www.talent.io/. Or, if you know some, just get in touch with headhunters in the country. They often have very good offers nobody knows about.
We got our mom a computer, a cheap one, and told her to play with it. Break it. Click everywhere.
Soon enough she was playing with windows settings. Soon enough nothing worked. She now knew you can brick computer, she is more careful.
We fixed the computer and she explored the internet. She asked how she could download wallpapers, we introduced her to torrents and file sharing. She got viruses. She learned that you can get virus online and they will delete your hard worked wallpaper collection. She is aware of the dangers of the internet now.
For a while you would download all the free adblockers, anti-virus, etc., she could find and put them on CDs. She learned to clean her own computer.
Right now she is very comfortable with computers and it allows her to have more freedom. She will easily connect with people online, like we do here. I'm certain it has helped her keeping smart.
She even feel out pain now. Whenever one of her neighbours lady has issues with computers they call her.
I got a Dell Chromebook for my mother.
It's nigh on unbreakable, and is great for non-tech parents. Each tab/app runs in its own sandbox, and it allows them to do the things they want (i.e. browsing).
It automatically updates in the background (none of that Windows update rubbish), it has inbuilt malware block lists (via Chrome Safe Browsing), it's fast, doesn't bog down over time etc.
Even if by some magic they brick it, a simple Powerwash (https://support.google.com/chromebook/answer/183084?hl=en) and 5 minutes later, it will be back to a pristine state, they log in with their Google account, and it pulls down their settings again.
Also, if you want to see the latest and greatest coming in ChromeOS - try the Canary channel =). (But be prepared for rough edges).
Feel free to ask any questions.
You don't want to have to support them using a new OS for the first time - you'll be in for a headache. I use Deepfreeze for anyone who is a "problem user" and most don't even realize they have it if it's set up right.
Everyone loves to recommend Chromebooks to older/less digitally literate people, and they're right to do so in most situations. However Chromebooks have one huge downside that makes them non-starters for some of that demographic: Printing is a no-go.
And don't tell me about "Google Cloud Print." Cloud Printing requires a PC or Mac connected to the printer and a copy of the Chrome browser running. In this scenario we're trying to replace a PC or Mac, not add to them, so Google Cloud Print is a non-starter.
Ultimately people who quickly jump on the Chromebook recommendation need to find out first if printing, even rarely, is a requirement. For a lot of people I've tried to move over to a Chromebook, it has been the single thing that killed the entire project.
Printing in general is a huge hole in Chromebook's offering.
...but to answer your question perhaps you can get your parents a Chromebook? I'm not sure what photo editing options exist on the platform, but hopefully it's an obscure enough platform to avoid the majority of malware.
I had more or less the same issue (except things still booted) with my parents about 5 or 6 years ago. In a move I thought was insane, I put them on Xubuntu. I moved them to Mint for a while, but they are back to Xubuntu. It's my preferred distro, and the Ubuntu base (for good support) and XFCE (Windows familiarity) made me comfortable it was Mom and Dad proof. Aside from showing them where things are, there have been zero problems. Turns out that Linux is just as good for email, web browsing, Youtube, and solitare.
I haven't used Lightroom, but how does (say) RawTherapee compare?
I've had no tech support calls for a couple of years now.
I think a chromebook is a good option if a keyboard is required.
It's a losing battle at this point. Your time is better spent educating them against social engineering attacks (I'm still afraid my mom is going to return a call to the voicemail the "IRS" left)
My father complained of virus and malwares on his computer.
I came home, formatted his hard drive and re-installed windows.
I go to eat lunch with my mother in the kitchen, a few minutes later I hear "[baby], I have a virus on my computer!". WHAT?
The first thing he did was to google for "chrome" on internet explorer and use the first result. The first result is a google ads for a malware containing chrome. Had to reformat his computer one more time. I think that's the moment where he got it.
Cheap, keeps itself up to date, fully cloud based.
It wouldn't tick the Lightroom box but it does the internet based stuff extremely well with low maintenance.
I had an "oh shit" moment when my mom described a website that added automated popups over a text editor field -- as she typed it would periodically throw up a pop up with encouraging commentary and editing advice "good idea, can you elaborate" etc -- and it took her a long time to realize that the intellectual/emotional support she was feeling wasn't actually coming from anywhere ... she also got severely addicted to the political campaigns and facebook -- and ended up with a news feed that absolutely barraged her with a constant stream of fake political news stories ... got her down from her 4-6 hours per day of internet usage but it was so fast -- really scary stuff.
Show him one of those videos with deep-sea fish that use a luminescent lure to eat smaller fish. The pop-up is the lure. The small fish is him. The Internet is like the deep sea, and it's full of lures like that.
One simple criterion I give non-technical people: if it's unsolicited, it's hostile. End of story. No exceptions.
I think you need to explain to them that the Internet is too much like the Wild West, and they need to stick to trusted web sites, as their "sight" is not tuned to see the dangers. Leaving them too scared to randomly surf might not be a bad thing, in this situation. I have the same type of situation with my 85 year old mother. She is somewhat tech savvy, but not enough. Her browser has every possible 3rd party toolbar, no matter how much I educate her on the situation...
-Setup a network and computers that I can admin remotely. Probably Ubiquiti Unifi gear (great wifi APs, powerful router with DPI / firewall, where I have admin access from my Unifi Controller install. Then I could handle all network troubleshooting remotely, unless their ISP is down or hardware has physically failed (unlikely with the ubiquiti gear)
-Look at something like OpenDNS personal configured on the gateway to help protect against malicious stuff in browser
-Set up any Desktop PC to run a hypervisor, and keep the OS they use as a VM that I could access and administer remotely, and that I could quickly reset to a known-working state.
-Have them use gdrive / dropbox / onedrive to keep documents backed up and accessible across machines
-For laptop / portable, see if I could get them to use chromebooks, or I'd need to replicate the VM setup from the desktop PCs
Nearly every time it takes me hours if not days to do a bunch of scans, install updates and purge whatever garbage has been installed by various malware that she's somehow managed to find. I've done more than a few clean wipes, bought her new machines and yet still she figures out how to kill it again. Most of the time it's caused by her playing some silly online puzzle game, or clicking a link in an email or some sort of fake notification... or AOL, which she refuses to ditch even though it's a huge vector.
It's been decades and she still hasn't learned how to avoid this stuff correctly. I've tried every malware scanner & notification software on the market, and each one of them is eventually bypassed by clever malware or in some cases like AVG or Norton, BECOMES the friggin problem.
Basically, my conclusion is if your parent has a problem like this the only solution is refuse to help them anymore if they insist on using Windows as their primary web device and make them get a Mac and/or an iPad, maybe a Chromebook as others suggested. Then get rid of the Windows PC or simply tell them not to use it for anything other than printing / scanning etc. There is no winning otherwise. Windows for some folks is just plain bad news
the xfce4 GUI is close enough to traditional windows98/windows2000/winXP models that most older non technical users have no problem with it.
the best thing for non technical users/older users/ignorant users is to give them the closest approximation to a thin terminal web browser, whether it is a linux desktop or a chromebook type thing.
Revoke local admin privileges. It will stop a lot of the click-click to install bullshit, but it also means you will get a lot of calls about "access denied" whenever they want to update an app that needs admin rights. Give them an admin account to install/update software separate from their normal account.
Simplify the device by going tablet/chromebook. Probably means you will get a lot of questions regarding how to use/setup the new OS.
Shorten the loop on backup/rebuild and let them hit the iceberg. Good backups and fast imaging with drivers pre-loaded can make cleanup a lot easier/faster.
2) Chrome + uBlock Origin w/ Malware filters.
3) Sophos Home which has the bonus feature of being cloud-managed and not providing any control to the local interactive user.
4) Sophos XG Firewall Home Edition on whatever $100-ish hardware the pFense crowd is currently in love with. Web filtering for Advertising and Threats, AV scanning.
 https://www.sophos.com/lp/sophos-home.aspx https://www.sophos.com/en-us/products/free-tools/sophos-xg-f...
So I started a free service http://www.littlecaution.org/ where I do talks and seminars about remaining safe online. Since it's just me on my personal time for now doing the workshops, growth and reach is slow. But I continue to work on it.
My belief is that using the right tools is of great importance but raising awareness is a bigger need. All the best tools are no match against human fallibility. So in these talks, the direction I take is about knowing the issues, being aware, and then followed by using the right tools.
removed her user's admin privileges
install flashblock - one of the ones where you have to click on the video to make it run
spent a long time explaining that you will never be chosen to win something, MS support never rings you to tell you have a virus, if something takes over the whole screen and tells you anything suspicious/implausible to press alt+f4
convinced her free music isnt worth the risk of downloading something that trashes the machine. installed spotify
Of course, in this case we're trying to protect people from themselves rather than the outside world, but still...
If there's that Just One Piece of Windows software he needs, do try it in Wine - Wine works more often than not these days.
I never did viscerally understand how literally 25% of Windows XP installations could be botnet members until I saw my sister's computer in 2010. Oh my goodness. The disk was full because they never emptied the rubbish bin. And I don't think there's ever been a piece of crapware that my brother-in-law didn't download to try. The only thing saving them was that they were still on dialup. They're on broadband now (it turns out the killer use case for videophones is our mother Skypeing her grandchildren), and I shudder to think what it's like. Normal people do not use computers like we do.
I bought the cheap one (Lenovo) sometime ago. It has a good battery life, very lightweight and compact. I have seen the same being used by many people (in the same category). It is the most trouble free and productive piece of material there is. Ignore all these security software and Linux etc. Just hookup uBlock and Ghostery into the user's Google Chrome account and you're done.
1) Install GNU/Linux, most click adds target windows users.
2) Install an ad-blocker at DNS level. I use a custom variation of this: https://pi-hole.net/ (by default logs DNS requests, mind you. You can disable logging though).
3) Spent some time to educate him on what to avoid online
4) Lastly, I have an RPi running on a VPN exit node (actually I have an RPi cluster, but anyway). When I had an openWRT-based router, I had a script which was fetching porn/torrents/etc. IP addresses and adding routes to the router redirecting connections via VPN.
5) A separate guest network with radius accounting can go a long way into securing your network and help control access (I have a radius RPi server but my APs do not support accounting. I felt kinda screwed when I realised)
I have this exact problem with several family members PCs who come to me regularly with messed up machines.
It's not just old people either. One problem person for me is a 10 year old who always insists that all he downloaded was just that one minecraft mod and it was definitely a safe mod, honest, because he downloaded found it on google, or he saw stampy using it on youtube, oh and a java update because the mod says it needed it, oh and forge, and optifine, and, and, and... He's loosely tech savvy, but in a way that doesn't make him any safer, he still gets his computer into a mess. He's not going to switch to a Chromebook. No minecraft, and none of the other games his peers are into. (On a related note, the minecraft modding community is one of the most vile den of scam-mongery I've ever had the misfortune to stumble into)
The older people all require MS Word/Excel (And don't tell me LibreOffice is a replacement, it's not even close if you expect file compatibility with other people who use MS products).
Windows only plugins for specific websites, that's another one that is hopefully getting much rarer, but I still do see from time to time.
I've tried setting up restricted accounts and keeping the admin account password secret, but it always eventually has to get given out. Last time it was because their son needed to do submit his homework on the schools website, but the submission processes required a Windows only plugin which needed admin access to install. They were all panicked because I hadn't been answering my phone and his homework was due the next day. After that I gave up and stopped using restricted accounts.
I've tried disk imaging software, but it's typically a lot more work than it's worth with the images quickly getting out of date and needing redoing with new versions constantly.
This is a big big problem that I just don't have a good solution for.
While I agree a chromebook won't get owned your parents will still likely get phished. I have no idea how to solve that.
0) Deny them admin rights to the machine.1) Create a second profile for each of them2) Write a quick batch or PowerShell script to copy the contents of their Desktop, Documents, Favorites, Pictures, Music, and Vidoes folders (not the entire profile) from their profile to the second profile you created for each of them. Make sure your script only copies new or changed items (so it runs faster) Store this script outside of either profile.3) Schedule the script to run every hour on the hour.4) In the event that they brick their profile with adware, malware, etc, simply login as an administrator, delete the first profile, rename the second profile to whatever the first one was called and then create a backup profile with the same username that the previous backup profile had (so you don't have to edit your script).
Notes:For your script if you are more comfortable with batch scripting then use "Robocopy". If you are more comfortable with PowerShell use "copy-item".I cannot stress enough how important it is that you ONLY copy the folders I mentioned above. If you get lazy and copy the entire profile you will bring over the folders viruses, adware, and malware hide in (like AppData).For the love of God make sure you have up to date antivirus on the machine. That's so basic that I didn't mention it above but I feel compelled to do so here. If you don't want to spend money just install Security Essentials or AVG.
* Remove the anti virus and tell him that you did so. It just gives a false sense of security and introduces more popups which teaches users to ignore prompts. If he knows it's not there he might be more careful.
* Install ublock origin. It blocks known badware domains and reduces the amount of clutter/ads on almost every web page you browse, making it easier for him to identify weird stuff.
If you have a recent Chromebook, they can run Android apps =):
1) Create a user account in Windows that is NOT an administrator account, that way they can't install things without an admin username and password. The PCs admin account should be password protected.
2) Enable the highest level of windows alerts (those "this program wants to make changes or modifications to this PC, cancel or allow" messages). Teach your parents to always click no/cancel/do not allow.
3) Ad blockers like uBlock. Remove shortcuts to, or uninstall Internet Explorer.
4) Use software like DeepFreeze http://www.faronics.com/products/deep-freeze/standard/ it restores the computer to a snapshot you saved every time you restart it. No matter what they mess up or install or screw up, it'll be fixed with a restart.
Run him through the process of recovering downloaded files and you should be a lot safer.
Ultimately, they're adults, and the last thing your father will want is to be treated like a child on his own machine. If he fucks something up, fix it, and tell him what he can do to not have that issue come up again.
Ideally for my mom ChromeOS device would be ideal. For my dad it would be not enough as it seems in your case. Maintaining my parents computer is something that always gets back to me. Now I am also living few hours worth of travel from them so it is even less convenient.
Older computer couldn't handle Ubuntu of the time. So always something was not working correctly. Updates on every system are constant source of headaches. My dad got used, but much more powerful machine. I installed Windows 10 for them thinking that Windows is now better and that with perpetual updates it will be out of trouble for me. I installed also Chrome Remote Desktop for service. My dad preferred Linux experience. I hoped that he just needs to get used to it. He was happy with Windows Store for a while, until few of the games he enjoyed playing failed in strange ways. It would not be that bad, but updates on Windows 10 are huge and with 20-30GB free space left after installation it does not update anymore. It only downloads the update, tries to update and fails - on every reboot. My dad bought an external HDD so probably it could be resolved. However he still would like to have Linux in there - old computer was very slow, but it did not fail in such magical ways. For now I plan to install Ubuntu for him and see how it will behave.
For my own learning experience and a bit of enjoyment I started working on my own Linux distribution. The most important thing for me is to have hassle-free updates like on Chromebook. I prepared squashfs image with Firefox and intend to have two partition scheme for rootfs. Updates would be then just download and restart away - completely automatic and in case of failure you would still have previous working image. I could test the image locally and optimize it for fun and profit. For now I base it on Gentoo to build lean system in a similar fashion to ChromeOS build.
Teach him how to use Linux. He can use Darktable instead of Lightroom.
Btw, a chromebook does nothing to protect them against identify theft. Don't get them anything, better teach them what they might lose.
I've since given up completely on locking down the computer or protecting them from themselves in that regard. I occasionally get talked into basic tech support, but thats it.
It's really a relationship problem if anything (IMO).
Social engineering is a broad problem right now, and all you can really do is be prepared to pick up the pieces after the fact.
And thus your dad can't install any software he just downloaded from some random website. And the GNOME sofware center is great in Debian Stretch (to be released though, sorry).
create scripts using zenity as a GUI for youtube-dl (and any other command you wish him to run)
Also, I would recommend uBlock to Adblockplus.
A small addition, how often do they need to install new software after initial setup? Maybe take away admin privileges?
* Drop linux on it with a simple GUI on it and lock the machine down. Don't give him root access or admin rights. Make sure the machine updates and backs itself up without intervention.* Set up his browsing inside a vm that gets recreated on boot (any host OS, linux as guest would be ideal but any will do).
They'll only be able to do like, two things with it, but at least Google has tools that replace most office-type apps. I'm going to say Chromebook is the slower but simpler solution.
Also, have a look at how suitable a Chromebook will be for his workflow (simpler to maintain from your perspective and harder to infect).
You cannot protect people from their own ignorance.
I worked with MongoHQ before they became Compose (not the free version) and they were really nice people.
Usually when a company does something like this (canceling free or something) they let you know in advance so you can take measures, didn't they let you know in advance?
(1) http://strlen.com/procrastitracker/(2) https://www.voidtools.com/(3) http://www.zim-wiki.org/
It's fully-automatic, which makes it the best time tracker!
So use programming as means to something you really want. Maybe the breadwinner to the family you love or focus on jobs that you find fill your need to make a difference. Jobs where you can say without me that would never have happened. Chances are they won't pay as well but you'll feel better about what you are doing. Programming because it pays well does nothing for you in terms of fulfillment. Also, there's the life/work balance. Working continuously without a goal becomes a miserable situation. Understand that and you'll be a more content person.
Unfortunately I also like things that work.
It's tough. Sometimes I wish it was just a hobby.
Much like with alcoholism, there comes a point where the negative physical and social consequences of chronic over indulgence starts to outweigh the positives. It sounds silly on the surface but makes sense in the context of an obsessive programmer who spends 8+ hours a day almost every day doing something dev related, whether it be working or learning something new just to keep up.
It's a culmination of realizing how much of your life has been spent creating value for other people so they can pursue their own ambitions, coupled with good old fashion burn out and wondering if all of those hours of ones life could have been better spent.
The only solution I have so far is trying my best to partake with moderation, and only working on things where the end product is something I care a lot about.
... I don't love [programming]. Alan Kay is right, it's like building "an Egyptian pyramid with millions of bricks piled on top of each other, with no structural integrity, but just done by brute force and thousands of slaves". There's no elegance and no higher vision. It's an Asperger profession; smart but artless.
My advice is to either try to work at making programming better or consider a move to something better.
Personally, I'm part of a group in San Francisco called 20/20 that meets monthly toward the first goal [2020salon.blogspot.com]. If I didn't see a way out, I would have left a while ago.
But I don't love it. Alan Kay is right, it's like building "an Egyptian pyramid with millions of bricks piled on top of each other, with no structural integrity, but just done by brute force and thousands of slaves". There's no elegance and no higher vision. It's an Asperger profession; smart but artless.
I would prefer, if I could retire, to make short films and maybe to write plays. But I can't retire yet. So I'll push stones. It pays well.
I enjoy coding and understanding how computer systems work, but I don't care for the constant changes in tools and techniques in certain domains of development. I'd rather practise with and improve my existing knowledge of a subject, instead of constantly playing catch-up with someone else's tools and workflow. I also don't care about waterfall, agile, scrum, kanban, scrumban or any other development methodology that I've missed. I hate that my job has me chained to a desk (sitting or standing) instead of being able to use my body. All of this makes me think that real-world software development doesn't really suit me.
I'm about six weeks into a new job after leaving a company I worked at for just over five years. Amongst many other reasons for leaving, I thought that a new environment would change how I felt about continuing a career in software development, but I'm not sure that it has. I'm aware of how lucky programmers have it, but I can't help feeling like I just want something else. Grass is always greener, etc.
What are the career options that allow one to work mostly by oneself in one-to-two week stretches without having to play the development workflow game with the daily standups and so on?
Sadly I'm not sure what I'd do if not programming, but music is a big interest and I'd considered teaching music.
tl;dr Woe is me ;)
I'm glad for the experience, though.
Going back to programming, here's what I figured out:
- I was working on stuff I didn't enjoy, with people I didn't particularly care about.
- I was taking on new work projects without any particular selection criteria.
- I wasn't thinking about the kinds of work that got me excited about programming and chasing it down.
So I recently nailed the first two back into place. I'm working closer to my values system rather than paychecks. In exchange, I'm just saving more money so I have more freedom.
Anyway, burnout is real. I thought I was done for sure and that my interest in programming and computers was a thing of the past. But that was just the burnout talking.
It helped to keep a journal during this time. Not a chronicle, but a thought-dump process in which I asked if my life was actually improving daily. That made it pretty quick to pinpoint my frustrations, as you can only write about the same pains a few times before you start to really zoom in on the causes and potential solutions.
Good luck to you, however it turns out.
I'd been working at the same job for about ten years, and I started to work on a different group that made the same product with a never technology. I hated that, I found it hard to work in that and I wasn't that productive. Also I had some burnout, some depression, and not much to look forward to...
Except for dancing. I had begun some years prior and I became somewhat good, and I even began to teach.
Then an offer came, resign from the job for money was offered to all, I accepted.
For about two years I just gave classes and worked as staff. Unfortunately the money was not enough.
Then I started helping on the dance school's webpage. The money wasn't enough yet.
So I got a programming job and resigned from most of my job in the dance school. I just teach one hour a week.
I really lost my dream job because of money and not being good enough earn enough to life with that.
Just like artists, the programmers, coders, developers all design and create new things that didn't exist before, and no 2 programs or applications or completely functioning code will be identical for anything other than a fizzbuzz type test.
So it is natural for the creatives to experience burnout and falsely interpret that as having lost interest in our craft / art. I went through this too at a fairly young stage in my career as I had accomplished a lot in 5 short years. I had the pedigree and training -- internship at Magnum Photos in New York -- so I tried being a War photographer like my Grandpa and traveled to Iraq in 2008. 1 week in there and I came running back. It was a fairly freaky experience.
You think you are there to document something big and consequential to the world and initially it is exhilarating leaving the cube and CRUD applications, but all it is for most part is an online newspaper or blog paying you a few $ per shot. Totally not work the risk. Plus the Radical Islamic Jihadis (ISIS) crossed a new line and started kidnapping and beheading journalists.
I also realized I didn't truly have the stomach for it. Imagine actually being on the scene at 1 of these photographs, and having the courage to shoot, only to find out the media (AP, Reuters) won't publish it. => http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/08/the...( When Kenneth Jarecke photographed an Iraqi man burned alive, he thought it would change the way Americans saw the Gulf War. But the media wouldnt run the picture.)
Like someone else has stated here, we have it really cushy indeed. So don't get used to it and "itch" for something else. Just work on your side-projects, or learn a new language, or simply stop by to smell the roses and live a little.
Your passion will soon come gushing back and you'll start to wonder why you ever thought of leaving this creative, immensely satisfying craft in the 1st place!
When I'm outdoors and active, I am so much happier. If I am on a multi-day outdoor trip to hike or rock climb, I feel like a completely different person. This is especially true on long trips that last more than a week. I have much less stress. I smile compulsively, instead of baring my usual strained expression. I have more energy. You might think at first that is simply because I am on vacation and I don't have to think about work obligations, but when I am on a normal (non-outdoor) type of vacation, I don't get the same feeling at all. I think it has more to do with the outdoor environment and physical activity.
I recently met someone who works as a park ranger, and I became envious of her job. I would love to patrol the woods all day as a ranger, or to be a mail carrier walking from house to house. I make much more money as a programmer, but "money cannot buy happiness", and I wonder often if I should change course.
But I've never tried applying, because I have no retail experience, and my work experience is mostly as a lone-wolf remote developer or indie developer (also I'm middle-aged now). Always thought I'd be laughed out of the interview. But I still think one day I'd like to try.
The money will never be the same as working in tech, and you'll almost certainly have to scale back your lifestyle expectations. I still do remote freelance work in slower periods to keep cash-flow flowing, and to fund farm expansion as we grow.
Here's a fun video of my non-tech lifestyle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fb0ur8cdOfY
More recently, I've been applying my past development experience to farming automation using Raspberry Pi's. I built an automated greenhouse controller last year and this year am working on a device to automatically mix and dispense milk replacer for all of the goat kids we have born each year. (You can of course purchase commercial versions of the projects, but it was a fun application of programming, while learning about the RPi and automation, which I'd never done before.)
Ironically, I took a semester off and took a contract gig for a few months to pay off some bills and save up some cash, and that turned into a full time job writing software in the public health sector. I never did return to finish the undergrad, and have doubts I ever will, as my career in software has been about as good as medicine would have been when you balance the ten extra years of earnings against a slightly higher salary. The only reason I'd do it now would be to pursue a masters in something interesting.
I think if I had it to do over again I'd have probably just stayed in the market a little longer and skipped out on the student loans. I loved biology and medicine but i'd love to not be paying off the student loans too.
Luckily there is still a lot of use from my old skill set, and I suspect there will be more as time goes on.
I started by dabbling in teaching:
- Mentored some high school robotics teams in the evenings- Taught night school / weekend classes as adjunct faculty at local universities- Shifted my day job from developer to developer advocate
And then a few months ago I took the plunge... sort of. I went on sabbatical for a semester to teach CS 101 full time at a small university across the country.
It's been a great experience, but it made me realize how much I miss programming. I really miss the intellectual growth that I get from working with professional software developers. I suspect I'll resolve the conflict by going part time in my day job, and picking up more classes as an adjunct.
I think you should experience how horrible 99% of all other jobs are. Then you will truly appreciate what you have.
For me, I can't do anything else. I'm sure I could learn something else, and I certainly get burned out from time to time. However, I find the whole development process fascinating, I still get a kick out of solving the puzzles and making things work, I am deeply gratified to see something I made help someone else solve one of their problems, and code is affecting more and more of the population for better and worse. There's no place I'd rather be.
There's a scene in 'Heat' where De Niro's criminal and Pacino's cop characters are talking about why they do what they do over a cup of coffee at a diner, and it turns out they're both compelled and couldn't do anything but what they do. I'm not sure what I'll do when the Butlerian jihadists or the twenty-something Angular developers come for me, and I have to go find something else to do, but I think I'll keep at it until then.
Programming and computer research went back to being a pure passion. And I haven't looked back since.
- Programming is boring after a number of years - Programming is more of an art-form rather than engineering - Entry barrier for programming is low, so you dont have to be an engineer to do programming - Your programming skills plateau after a certain age - Your engineering mindset will be lost if continued in certain type of programming jobs.
Though OP hasn't asked for the following here goes, I feel the IT field has a lot of people wanting to change career paths, more than any other field because of the following:
1. Programming is an art, if not done right and assuming the product is in continuous development, will come back to bite you in the rectum like there's no tomorrow.
2. 99 percent of the industry is about shoving products out without any care for proper architecture or refactoring of any sort. Result -> feature addition/ bug fix times grow exponentially with time.
3. The IT field has no concept of overtime pay
4. 1 + 2 + 3 => loads of burnt out devs :-> people wanting to switch jobs regardless of how high paying programming can be
Trust me, even compared to other white collar jobs, you would not believe how cushy we have it.
Sounds like an insane idea, but as a Buddhist that would be a fulfilled life for me.
Ask them about their day, they just saved lives - heart surgery, brain surgery, trauma stabilization in ER, just saw a toddler through cancer treatment, and so on and so forth.
What did I do? Oh, I wrote code.
I've thought about teaching (programming) too. My dad is a retired professor, and I entertain no delusions of present-day teaching careers being anything like those of his generation. Still, there's something appealing about even just teaching as an adjunct once I no longer really need the money.
About a year ago, I started portrait photography semi-profesisonally. I really enjoy photography but didn't enjoy the business aspect of it. And it was hard to coordinate with clients when you have a fulltime job.
A few years ago, I got serious about fiction writing, wrote a lot but could not write anything that I felt was good enough for anyone to see.
Now I am just focused on programming and enjoy photogrpahy when I have free time.
Trouble is, it does not pay the bills. I'm currently working very hard to pay off all my debt and once that's done I'll be taking up writing full time and leaving the tech industry behind.
I have learnt a lot of concepts by learning programming that can be applied to many real world problems as well.
I desperately want to work in Renewable energy sector like Solar, Wind.
And the best part, my idol, Elon Musky Musk has applied the concepts that we programmers deal with in day-to-day life to producing machines that produce machines that are currently some of the best solutions to the problems like Global Warming, Energy storage & Electric cars manufacturing etc.
This part really gives me kicks. Even though, I think about leaving programming may be in 10 years(I'm currently 24), but the concepts I learnt are going to come in super-handy what ever Engineering things I'd like to do.
I grew up with my father being a machinist, and eventually going on to being a QA specialist for a large defense contractor, so I've be lucky enough to be able to learn a lot when it comes to machining and designing. Spitting out a 3D design from a printer is really cool, but nothing beats slapping a chunk of steel into a Bridgeport and ending up with a precisely-milled widget.
My wife is also an engineer at one of the largest (probably largest) physical testing companies in the world, and got her Chemical Engineering degree as well. There's constantly stuff she's telling me about, problems at work, custom things she's doing, and we get pretty deep into conversation sometimes about how to best solve the problems.
The money just isn't there compared to being a software engineer, but like a lot of people have said in this thread, maybe this is just a "grass is greener" thing: these problems that I can't work on just seem that more tantalizing than being the person who is actually dealing with a backlog of them. Vacationing in other people's jobs is fun and easy, and ignores actually being that employee.
That said I'm a sysadmin rather than a programmer, and I have no immediate plans to change.
One thing I would not do is become a photographer; that's my hobby (well that and rock-climbing / gyming), and I've seen too many people be burned by trying to become professionals. I charge money to shoot old ladies, hookers, and pets. But having to make a living from it would change how I viewed the subject and not in a good way.
There are so many people performing repetitive tasks who could benefit greatly from relatively small optimizations. I would be able to directly witness the impact of my work and make a difference on a personal level. It's hard to do this in software because the landscape changes so quickly.
It would also be super fun to practice apprentice-style learning in multiple fields and document/share everything.
A lot of my most compelling business ideas I've ever come up with haven't been apps or anything I could start programming right away, but rather have been totally different brick and mortar retail businesses. Opening a retail business is something I've thought about doing for a while, but I looked into some of the details and was somewhat turned off by the extremely high startup costs. I simply wouldn't be able to afford it without some partners.
One of my largest interests nowadays isn't software, but rather cities and urban planning. The idea of designing city features that would have a real, dramatic impact on people's every day lives is really compelling to me. I've thought about taking a break from software and working in this area, but at this point I really don't know if going back to school for this stuff is worth it at all. It's unfortunate that I hadn't discovered I was so interested in this topic when I was in highschool or early university.
Programming being very often about solving business needs, sometime in your career, you might be in a position to realize that it could make sense to go higher up the chain and build a company.
Problem is it's hard to sell myself to an employer with no degree, no job experience, no portfolio of projects done using the fashionable tech that is in high demand (and which I have no personal interest in). At this point I'm at a crossroads, but the best way forward seems to be to start building my own business. Of course, there are plenty of unknown intersections ahead in going that route, and I have no prior experience from running a business, so where I end up is one big question mark.
That said, I wouldn't mind writing about programming, but I can't afford to stop my day job.
Maybe also a series of primers: CORS, React, ES6, CSS, 60fps animation/UI on the web, web accessibility...
I actually have a degree in molecular biology and have transitioned to computer science and an engineering degree, which I think was the right choice for me. I thoroughly enjoy being an engineer but lately I can't help but being drawn towards the arts - music in my case. I have been eye-balling a music academy that offers a state accredited professional guitar degree. According to their information material, their alums are quite sought after because of the hands-on approach, studio skills, etc. I looked at the requirements for admission and I am pretty sure I can get admitted with some preparation, having played on and off for quite a few years now.
The catch here is that music industry is actual shit to work in, as I have heard on multiple occasions. And I cannot afford making less than a certain amount of $$ because I have to/want to provide for my wife and two kids.
On the other hand I started having the (completely irrational) fear of being a complete failure if I don't become a professional guitarist.
So recently I've been planning to fund a creative life by saving like a college kid for a decade. The prospect's actually led to a heavy side interest into finance. There are tons of resources on early retirement and financial independence floating around, as well as other ways to create passive income. Based on my starting salary, I'll likely be able to supplement a new career within a decade.
As for what I would do, I'm looking into making music, writing books, and chemistry. Been keeping a journal of book ideas for a few months - challenged myself to write a new one every day - so that I can choose the best ones to practice writing once I get some downtime. I've been playing guitar for over ten years, and I love the production of music. It would likely be recreational, but I want the ability to produce professional quality songs. And chemistry is the moon I shoot for. It's what I've enjoyed learning most in school, so learning and understanding as much of it as I can will bring me great satisfaction.
As others have said programming is probably the lesser of all evils compared to other jobs though. I don't think there is any other profession where I could so easily get paid as much as I do, and work from pretty much anywhere on the planet.
My mid-term goal is financial independence. I'm 28 and should achieve that in the next few years (I'll probably take short-term contracts and then a big break between rather than quitting completely). I don't really have any other hobbies, so I'm not sure what I'll do then though. I wouldn't mind going back to university to study physics.
Usability as a subject is the opposite of art, it is kitsch. You actively try to make simple and obvious; to have just one possible meaning.
She also said that art/painting was the best of hobbies, but would have been the worst possible of jobs. Too little money and too many interested people, so it was a rat race.
Personally, I've found hundreds of subjects I love to learn about. But it seems only one thing I really love doing. So they'll have to break my cold fingers off the keyboard. I love to teach about subjects I love, but sadly lack all pedagogical talent. (Maybe I had liked art if I wasn't color blind or so unmusical that I can't clap hand to most of my favorite music. :-) )
It's not that I want something more creative than programming, I consider programming to be equal parts art and skill. I want something more flexible, not tied to a company that requires me to work in ways that I don't find productive (looking at you stand ups). However, for now I'll be following the money and writing on the side, although it does get draining to split most of my day's effort into two creative professions.
However, I originally set out to become a visual artist. While I doubt I'd be able to pull that off as a career now, I would still much prefer to be doing something in that world rather than instructing machines for the Man. I often think about "transitioning" but so far I haven't found a path (you pretty much have to self-finance), and remain an "artist with a day career."
If anybody is seriously thinking about another profession, and is under 30, I strongly encourage you to give it a shot. It gets exponentially harder once you pass 40.
Second time, I took some time to execute on a non profit to help our local community. Being good with data really help organizing event people really liked so I tried to spin that into a startup and failed. Like other commenters said, I was doing stuff I didn't really like.
I'm back to programming but I'm really glad I tried different things. Not everything was a failure, I eat fresh organic food from my friend's farm and I have an impact on my local community.
Then, I would retire from the industry and focus on doing computer generated art and sculpture.
That would let me stay in software, but let me be creative (I don't want 'creatives' to design thing, as if they were a different species - I'm creative myself!). No scrums (aka micromanagement), no testing, no bureaucratic processes or anything like that - I would just spend all my time creating.
Once I left and ended up joining a small startup, I then realized that all programming jobs aren't like that and working on even enterprise software can be fun. Never looked back.
Drafter --> Teacher --> Education in Industrial Design --> Ux Designer --> Teacher --> Ux Designer --> Programmer.
During this timeline of about 30 years I never stopped programming as a hobby. I HATED the politics of teaching (which I did for nearly 20 years) but it paid the bills. Ux...well, everywhere I designed, I felt expendable and, like education, it was highly political. For many decades I felt like there was a big hole in my life. I wasn't happy. Then...I decided "F it!" and dropped it all to pursue programming as a career. While it hasn't been bliss, I am much happier. I am not inclined to slave away as a hired gun. Programming has been a way to express my ideas in a way that I was never able before. At 47 years old I feel like I'm preparing for a trip to the base camp at Mt. Everest. I figure that by time I hit the summit I'll be ready to retire, but I WILL retire on such a high note. Maybe I'll die on the summit :)
Despite many great comments from those in the profession or not, go with your gut instinct. When you get to the point where you are thinking of leaving what you do for something else, it doesn't matter whether or not other people got to the same point.
Trust your gut and go with it. Usually, it knows what's best for you.
Don't Call Yourself A Programmer, And Other Career Advice | Kalzumeus Software ---> http://www.kalzumeus.com/2011/10/28/dont-call-yourself-a-pro...
I prefer not to call myself a programmer, although it's a decent way of describing what I do.
I create [value] and solve problems. I used to this by fixing hard datacenter problems as an IT/Ops person, and now I do it as a Full Stack Web Developer. The creating things / solving problems mindset is what is really important to me. Programming is just one interesting "medium" to do this in.
I could see myself creating things and solving problems in other profession. One that I thought heavily about is medicine, law, and writing. I think there are many possible places you can do this in life - it's just a matter of picking a medium you enjoy.
If you need to work on something else, then you can always pick it up as a side project or hobby. I used to find philosophy fascinating. I spent probably a decade of my life reading it as a hobby. Part of me wanted to go back to school or somehow figure out a way to learn it/do it professionally...but I honestly got what I needed out of the hobby. Now I've moved onto other things.
If programming made me miserable, I'd consider getting a second degree in psychology and perhaps doing a ph.d eventually. Or maybe go into management. Or maybe go into medicine. Go with the flow or something.
On top of that I think I'd like to own a cafe or roast coffee or something.
But ultimately I got into development work because I was so motivated that the time it took to build experience on my own came easy. And doing the work day in and day out comes _pretty_ easy as well.
Though of course sometimes your interest wanes a little. But I know that it's a lot more satisfying than any job I've ever had. And I haven't thought much about others that I hear about.
In addition to that I just honestly don't think I'd make as much money anywhere else. So as long as I'm into it and it's the best place to make money, I don't see why I wouldn't keep at it.
I just hope I can try to do my other interests in my off time, which over time has become a lot harder than it felt previously.
The opportunity cost is extremely high though. It's pretty hard leaving six figures of income in a low cost of living (and the grass is always greener I'm sure).
I started as programmer in school, but decided you don't need to study it. It's easier to learn it by your own. Then I became architect, but mostly automated my problems and solutions. After architecture became tiring, without enough pay, I went to more engineering jobs.
Survey, civil engineering, city planning and finally stage design and film.This was all fun and got well paid, but I ended up as director of SW development soon after. After this was not fun anymore I went into hard core engineering, Formula 1 HW/SW simulation and support, but in the end I did more SW development than HW support. HW is always tricky and unreliable. SW is much more logical and reliable, much easier to analyze. And you are not that dependent on others. In SW it's easy to solve everything by yourself on 10x less time than waiting a year for someone else to approve something or until this piece is replaced.
So I went to full time SW work again, even if I still do work a lot on movies also. This is just for fun, helping out, going to festivals and such.
- Robotics (more on the hardware side)
- Custom motorcycle/classic car building and restoration
The common theme for me is the creative problem solving, building things in general, and attention to detail/craftsmanship specifically that maintain my attention. As it is those are all hobbies of mine, so I still get to dabble while making a good living doing another thing I really love.
My solution was to eventually either become a consultant/freelancer, or create my own startup. When I then realized that a tech lead (Staff Software Engineer) spends about as much time doing manager-related tasks as they do developing software, and that a Senior Staff Software Engineer or Principal Engineer is essentially a manager (almost no coding), I knew my days dealing with corporate world BS were numbered.
My plan didn't really fall into place, as I became a Targeted Individual (likely at the hand of one of the idiots managers I had to deal with) 2-3 years after graduating from college. That BS left me sitting in this room for the last 5-6 years being harassed all day long.
After a few years of the torture, I was pretty much done working, as I was now unemployed for too long a period of time, my intelligence and reasoning ability were waning away, and the harassing/intrusive thoughts were still present and were still getting in the way.
As careers go though, what we do is interesting, ever changing, and an exercise in learning almost every day. Oh, and the pay kicks ass. So, yeah, I've thought it. Lots of us think it all the time, but really, we've got a great job, so while the grass may be greener over there, it's pretty green here too.
Even with a gratifying job full of technical challenges, I feared I was becoming a 9to5 zombie. So, I got a new job a few weeks ago. I joined a non profit offering free WiFi in the city as the one man army tech guy. Instead of just software/web/mobile development, I also have kind of managerial type of responsibility and more public relation to do. It's something like a safe steady job with nearly startup mindset.
There's still a bit of programming involved, but it's so different from what I know that it's a real professional challenge. And for that I had to accept a big salary downgrade.
It really depends on what's your motivation. Is it salary, challenges that go in pair with your personal growth or simply working in a different context / mindset?
That may be the tasks you do that aren't fulfilling? For some people, manual work is really gratifying. Last week I was setting new cables in a patch panel; there's nothing challenging about it but it's simple and you can be proud of a cleanly done job.
I'm still in touch with my programming side through my side projects but the experience I gained through my software development years have been extremely helpful both in dealing with business & technical audiences as well as in solving problems logically.
The main point is that the programming skills you've learned can be useful in another setting. Starting off as a programmer doesn't mean that you will have to do it for the rest of your life. You have many different choices and it's up to you to shape your career the way you want it.
I sometimes day dream though about doing something outside of software such as landscaping or remodeling houses. Something I can do away from the screen & keyboard. Something that still involves creating and being able to see the end results of your creation.
My dream is writing for a living, and I'm currently writing the first draft of a novel. I'm about 1/5 of the way there, began a couple of weeks ago. I've tried a few other times, but couldn't get past the first few chapters. I'm now at 18k words and going strong, I hope this will be the one.
Edit: jwz hates HN; made the links non-clickable. Thanks @Jtsummers.
I can't say for definite what I'd do. Music's always been a side passion and I'm attracted to the idea of getting back into music production. I studied it briefly back in college (UK, so I guess high school?) but I don't think my heart was really in anything back then so I let it slip through my fingers. For some reason I also sometimes get these day dreams of working in a market food stand. I can't see how i'd enjoy it considering how disdainful I was of my youth working in retail, but cooking is another little passion of mine so maybe i'd dig it, even if it felt a bit like an step down.
Today I do both but I'm extremely thankful I stuck with programming. Not just as a useful job skill but as a different, powerful way to see the world.
History is probably something that will really give you context on a lot of things. Philosophy is great too.
There is also an extreme amount of micromanagement at my current job. I just get very specific issues and then resolve them. There is no autonomy. The project manager just sees me as a typewriter for his novel.
Jobs where I have been physically active and interacted with a bunch of different people that I don't work with have been much better in terms of my mental and physical health.
I am thinking of dropping down to part-time as I could manage 4 hours per day of programming, and maybe getting a physical job as the other 4 hours.
Martial arts can be incredibly fulfilling. I got to help people improve their physical and mental fitness, gain confidence, overcome anxieties and fears. There were constant opportunities for fun, new friendships, and doing good in the community. Plus it was really cool knowing I could do some of those Bruce Lee / Chuck Norris moves I'd see in the movies.
At the time, I was the sole income for our family (wife & 3 kids). The income possibilities were just not there. We could not have made it work financially. Now, I'm an old out of shape desk jockey.
Dont really know where to start when it comes to tech + UN. If someone knows please give me a pointer to start.
Eventually, a few years ago, I started a company to make software for fiction authors.
Best of both worlds!
It's a job, and like any job it sucks (hugely) at times. It also provides money to keep my family, and I get to work on interesting, brain-teasing problems (sometimes! Damn web development).
Frankly, I'm not good at thinking what I'd do until I'm doing it. If I did something else it'd be one of:
Research scientist University lecturer R&D Psychologist Photographer
I should have realized it back then but I enjoyed CS in college much more than software engineering in industry and I miss the difficulty and rigor of the problems.
What people like is the 'creative part' associated with a skill. When you do something as a career, most of your time will be used dealing with the 'boring part'.
It was a simple life, but fun. And now season is over. So I look for a job in the IT.
It really changed my life.
I also learned doing bread, alcohol (wines and ciders), playing more music, and did some gardening, illegal picking of (common) plants in the wild ... brawling (movers are no angels) and winning. I grew a spine and a pair of balls.
Don't be scared, life out of programming is quite awesome.
In fact, life is amazing as long you don't feel like in a jail that sometimes is only in your head. I now live with my true colours ; I love to be dirty, mean and sweaty.
Raaah. It feels good to finally be yourself.
There's that nagging idea of the 'real programmer' who is getting paid big money to solve interesting problems. Almost certainly a myth but still a frustrating idea.
Best experience in my life, I have learned a lot about myself and that world outside pure IT can be even more astonishing and challenging. Psychological leap I would say, advancing to new level. Despite my friends who couldn't understand with I sacrificed my top salary (yeah, I had it best among my programming friends).
Though I failed (yeah, can admit that proudly, because I tried) and I am back in my profession, with even higher salary then before 1-year challenge I got much better perspective now. I try to widen my horizons more often and in different ways. Oh, and after few months break aiming to jump back into trading on my own account... Real fighters never surrender, right?
Then I sometimes wish I was a full time philosopher.
Other times when I've moved between countries and thought I'd take a break from programming to refresh myself.... I end up thinking about ideas around coding and end up coding anyways. So I think I'm a lifer. Not quite sure what role I'll take if there is a zombie apocalypse though, however I have played through a lot of computer simulations of such events and I seem to be a kick ass warrior
... as I said, fanciful ideas of other jobs :)
It's a job that solves a lot of the problems people complain about in programming, like spending all day staring at the screen or not interacting with people or doing things that might be pointless.
The downside of course is that you eat what you kill.
I have always enjoyed discovering things in subtleties, and learning the reasons behind strange things with research. There are still plenty of things that we have yet to figure out.
However, regardless of whether I did archaeology or programming, I'm sure I would get burnt out every once in a while. That just happens, and it isn't necessarily a bad thing. (Even if it is annoying...) It helps me to remember that this sort of thing passes as my inspiration swings back and forth, and that I don't actually dislike my profession. And until I am back into it, I just do things to force myself to be productive.
I was an athlete in a former life that allowed himself to get woefully out of shape. I went on a health kick a couple of years ago, got into better shape than I was in college. Now I do personal training on the side, just finished my first triathlon, and am now training to compete in American Ninja Warrior. I really wish American Gladiators was still around though as I would've much rather preferred that.
I have switched to be a guide for Tibet tours (Lhasa, Kailash-Manasarovar) and high altitude trekking and motorcycle tours in Nepal, Sikkim and Ladakh. Customers enjoyed my guided tours in Jokhang and Potala.
Better demand and much more tolerable life than in a coding sweatshop. For everything else there is literally no demand for anything except Joomla websites and Android apps outside the valley, which is already saturated.
And, of course, I have zero interest in things like React or Node.
The sad truth is that indie and small shop IT is already dead. Unless you are a young CS major in US there is no demand for programming jobs. Otherwise there will be a market, not just a few brokers like Toptal.
But if pressed... Corporate pilot comes to mind. I've spend I don't know how much money on training and aircraft rental. Most piloting jobs for corporate clients have you working only 2 weeks out of the month. That is, you only fly about ~250hr a year. The rest of the time can be spent hacking or doing whatever else you'd like to do.
I'm in the process of going back to studying. My employer knows this, as well as most my friends and peers. I plan to spend the next two scholar years (starting in 2017) to take a master in cognitive science. I have worked for 3 years in web development since graduating and have enough money stashed to make the transition.
I'll likely write a lot less code, and more maths and english.
My primary motivation is that I believe that breakthroughs in AI and cognitive science at the computational Marr's level are going to have a huge impact, and I want to be a part of it.
The only reason i even thought about that is to have more joy in programking after work.
I fixed it by quitting my job and going digital nomad.
With that fear in mind, becoming a M.D. actually seems like it would be a good decision. Even this late in the process, doctors have been well paid and relatively rare for thousands of years; a tried and true profession. Plus it will sate my curiosity about the function of the human body.
I've been mulling over the possibility of some kind of work that would be more conducive to my long term sanity. My imagination has me developing and deploying instrumentation for environmental science. 1/3rd screen time 1/3rd workshop, 1/3rd fielding instruments.
I'll figure something out. Probably when 12 hours of daily screentime becomes unbearable.
Some other people are more career oriented and seek professional growth. There are various lines of professional growth, in each stage of the SDLC. Even if someone is new to the industry, a good attitude will eventually lead to growth.
I LOVE gaming (and transferring my skills learnt from programming & the startup world to the gaming/streaming world).
Apart from that...I've wanted to try and be an investor/trader but I don't know if it's really something I'd get into given the commitment & resources they require.
I'd love to change to working in 3D, preferably with Rhino (which I have a license for). But, that's not what a career is made of and lacking any practical experience pretty much means I'm stuck.
I'm not opposed to starting over at the bottom, as long as the work is engaging. Unfortunately, there's not much call for people with only minimal experience in Rhino3D, that I've found.
I'm putting more focus at the moment on exploring issues of Mental health in the IT industry as it's something I've dealt with and continue to deal with.
That seems to give me a degree of fulfilment. Doesn't pay the bills though.
Id always be inventing -something- though, recently I got into designing and building high voltage distortion prone vacuum tube hybrid solid-state instrument signal drivers: aka guitar amplifiers :) analog electronics is a lost art!
I would like to
- Work at a General Store- Be involved in a full movie / tv series making process ( Because movies have always had a deep impact on me, and I would love to contribute my ideas in that domain )- Invent new food recipes- Research on Ancient History
there are definitely very tedious things that programmers have to deal with like unmarshalling and marshalling data across backend to frontend components or test automation (think of having a multi-tier system with ios app, database, email service for forgotten password and having to automate all of that). but at the end of the day, the thing i like most about programming is the ability to see the things i create doing something useful. seeing the end result that's of high quality gives me a sense of pride. i'm definitely a maker, it's what i was born to do. but at the end of the day it's about risk/reward and opportunity cost, at this point there's just too much to give up, and the side project isnt panning out yet.
on a slight tangent, i have an electrical/computer engineering background and was supposed to go into hardware like most of my classmates, but i ended up liking the fact that i had something tangible after hours of programming, even though it was virtual, and with hardware i'd have nothing to show for it, but a pic controller lighting up some led's, a breadboard with a bunch of mixed logic implementing some simple thing, or some vhdl state machine that effectively did something simple. no offense to all the engineers working on this type of thing, but it just wasnt as exciting to me.
i find that there's some balance to it all, like getting paid well, but also having hobbies on the side that you can soak yourself into. but then again, i've heard many a story about people doing what they love and for lots of money.
Cycle normally repeats every few years.
Currently doing all three at once because startup.
Another thing I've been toying with is prop trading. It's not entirely separate from programming, but the industry is pretty isolated in terms of expertise so it might be considered separate.
I want to love what I'm doing, but unfortunately there's few things that tickle my brain like this. What should I do, take ADHD meds and go to work, like everyone else?
Take for example current js webdev, with a new hot tech every week.
We can't all become IT managers (nor want to)...
Then I got certified in Autocad, got a qualification in Manufacturing Engineering at part-time school, used that to start a degree in Supply Chain Management in the UK. I'm now on an internship in Miami and I already did a semester on exchange in Finland.
Worked out well so far.
I also love programming (since maybe 12/13 year old me read HTML books and Flash actionscript to make games) and I don't really want to do anything else anyway.
I found that SW engineering is too taxing on my time at my stage of my life. My wife and I are mid 40s and the kids are growing fast.
It was interesting and a bit painful to not have access to source code and to be completely dependent on a slow process.
I'll probably write code as long as I am alive but not under those conditions, not CRUD apps, not to make someone else rich.
I'd actually say that there are only 4 reasons to write code:
- To learn
- Temporary ( cash )
- To create something which becomes eventually a company
- To solve your own problems
Obv. I don't want to attack someone, that's just how I think about it.
When I entered SE I already knew that I'm not going to do that for a long time, it's on my list, I had to learn it. It's time for the next topic.
The only other alternative I've considered is to teach English in foreign lands, but I'd probably still do programming on the side.
And in a way, leaving lower-level programming for the sake of it and focusing on nicer things more connected with the end user kind of feels like it
Last year I took up some programming classes (java) and I actually liked it, however I kept convincing myself that despite that, I was going to finish law school. Mainly to keep my job prospects open, maybe even get a management position in an IT firm faster that way. But honestly, aside from the pragmatic things that law teaches you, it sucks. It really does. Everyone I know either aspires to pick up notary or fiscal law, just so they could satisfy their own prospects of a well paid, highly regarded profession. It's a fairly depressing field to study and to work in.
I did a summer internship during summer vacation this year at a fairly prestigious firm. I hated that job, it consisted of looking up the latest jurisprudence about i.e. 'higher power', it made me read law books that were too boring to even want to comprehenend. I read an M&A template contract, which was interesting, but I couldn't imagine doing that for the rest of my life. All the lawyers there aged 27 and up were anything but living the dream. They worked their ass off from 8am to 10pm to bill enough hours per month just so they could keep their respective partners happy. The partners were well dressed, hardworking and very prestigious people. They were nice to be honest, they weren't assholes like you would expect. They actually made me, and the lawyers that worked there, aspire to become one of them. But then you hear the dark side of things. One of the partners had 2 kids she hardly saw, she actually had a babysitter/cleaning maid who took care of them all the time. Another one was divorced and spent his time harassing every hot secretary he met. Actually many of the male part ners thrived on exploiting their prestige to flirt with the fairer sex. Which I can't help but feel a bit jealous of, having such prestige must be awesome.
Except that's all it is really, prestige. It's the main reason people study law, to my knowledge.
As I'm writing this, I'm contemplating quitting my master's and enlisting in a bachelor of IT focused on cybersecurity. I'm aware that it won't give me the same prestige, or the nice suits (I really like suits), but maybe I'll stop feeling miserable.
Just wanted to give you guys a view from another perspective, law school and law in general aren't all they're cracked up to be. They're miserable places to study and work. Just google the words law and depression in the same sentence.
as an employee/employer, become a technician. everybody needs repair work, and very few can call the result maintainable and sustainable. focusing on residential areas helps, too.
Or drive to Mexico or another Central American country?
You don't need to get a visa prior to arrival for most countries.
Everything is inexpensive, including cell service. Young South Americans are very big on social media, so you can find reloadable SIM cards on the cheap. Plus, there is WiFi all over the place.
Buses from city to city are cheap and comfortable.
Ecuador is very cool, and you can take a short flight from Quito or Guayaquil to the Galapagos Islands and see a natural treasure of unimaginable richness.
Uruguay is probably the chillest country of all time.
Santiago, Chile, is pretty damn cool too.
People think South America is dangerous, but places like Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay are a far cry from the violence of Venezuela or the horror stories you hear about street crime in Colombia. Still, the slight whiff of danger makes a South American adventure all the more exciting.
And believe it or not, a lot of folks love Yankees down there.
It was the cheapest interesting flight from google flight suggestions. We decided to go and it was great.
We rented a casa on airbnb and bought tickets 2 weeks before.
I don't speak spanish and it was fine.
We simply enjoyed walking and exploring the 3 main parts of the city. If you go for more than a week, you could visit more of the island.
Cuba is safe, even alone at night.
Perhaps consider Australia or New Zealand (or both).
Melbourne is a cheery, relaxed, wonderful and relatively inexpensive city.
First time there I stayed in a hostel boat in the spree river 10 meters from the Wall.
Nightlife is crazy, and the thech scene is great. If you go there, drop at the betahaus cafe and ask the locals for directions.
Stay at backpackers to meet people.
Traveling alone and for your first time can be hard but also amazing as you meet people on the way.
Going alone and staying in hostels, you'll find it incredily easy to meet other people.
From December through to January, the weather in South East Asia is fantastic as it's in the cool season (still quite warm). I'd encourage you to grab a flight in and out from Bangkok, and figure out the rest upon arrival.
Australia would also be a great choice at that time of the year.
If that doesn't spend all the money, good! You'll be needing it. Starting a new household is full of expenses. That includes minor things which add up, everything from a salt shaker to a mop.
I would've imagined this extension being used by A LOT of developers...
Market yourself better! Use buzzwords like "full-stack" instead of "generalist", and don't hesitate to call yourself a software developer (unless you'd rather do management) but emphasize your flexibility, broad experience, and specialist knowledge in other fields.
'Can you work as a sw dev? I'm probably not as skilled as a professional dev. I would never be time-efficient as a professional.'
I have seen many fellow developers say things like this (impostor syndrome). Productivity as a code monkey is rarely relevant to jobs and probably not relevant to the jobs you want. You have worked in a variety of roles and have lots of life experience. This may make you many times more efficient in other essential parts of software engineering. Clear communication, problem solving, planning, understanding actual customer and business needs. The most efficient software engineers I have seen don't type [insert some huge number] lines of code a day, they ask good questions and fully understand the domain before the tackling a problem.
As for your problem finding a job, I would be working on creating a portfolio of code samples/projects in the field I wanted to work. Also I would make sure to tailor my resume depending on who I sent it to and what the job description lists.
One successful approach I have seen is contacting companies you want to work for (works best on smaller companies) and trying to talk to someone before giving them a resume. This can be accomplished at meetups or cold calling/emailing :shudder:. When you talk to them you identify what real problems they are facing. Then tailor the resume to those specific problems (or even throwing in a case-study of how you would approach and solve them).
Given your track record, I believe the ideal positions for you (and the most lucrative) are managerial positions.
Open Badges is also a neat idea: http://openbadges.org/
Open Badges looks even more promising if combined with blockchain tech so it's impossible to forge your ability / qualification, unlike today where a large portion of 'degrees' can be bought and sold on the black market for very little money.
Who exactly are you marketing yourself to? What's your target profile look like?
True, HR will not understand generalists. But CTO's will get your tech experience. CMO's will get your marketing/speaking experience.
Tailor your expertise and capabilities to the senior executive that you can best help. Weinberg offers excellent advice to strategic targeting > http://www.newsalescoach.com/2014/03/stop-over-analyzing-you...
1. Remote job as a "developer evangelist"? An engineer doing marketing and education, basically.
2. Don't go and tell people "I won't be as efficient as professional SW developer", just go and apply for the job.
3. Remote programming job at small company/startup, where multiple skills are actually valued.
How deep can you even go per topic beyond mentioning that it exists?
The "topics" you listed are all 1-2 semester courses individually.
I'd like to see your 2 weeks on networking. What are you going to teach there? "Hey guys the web exists there are webservers and an http protocol, btw you can boot up a webserver by writing python -m SimpleHttpServer ok thats it see ya next week for our lecture on regex"?
Please don't pretend you're ever going to mention sockets. That's just not enough time.
Never tried this, but what if teaching was more like real world? Given an existing code base the students would have more context for why the code does what it does, and get a more holistic view of coding techniques.
If a position takes longer than 2 months to fill I consider it 'hard'.
If you put me and another senior next to each other to use just one computer and make us do that consistently, we would both quit the job by friday. Pair programming is a great way to cut your productivity in half (2 people doing the job of one). We trust each other anyway, there's no point in watching each other like hawks. We can just do our own thing and then CR the other guy.
Pair programming is another one of those schemes employed to make people feel pressured into not slacking under the pretense of it being new and edgy and kinda cool. Its great, nobody ever slacks. You just burn out within months.
If you don't think pair programming is retarded, please ask a welder how he would feel about pair-welding. Complete and utter bullshit.
^ I'm talking about professionals. Not brogrammers. Not node.js clowns. Those people could all use some supervision. But sticking two great engineers with lots of experience together like that will jsut reduce productivity and will to live.
The KEY problem is management. My partner always wanted to type so we ended up with me doing the thinking/review while he worked out the syntax. When we got our performance reviews my partner got a raise and I got a bad review. My manager believed that he did all the work and I just sat around talking.
Beware the 'review' trap...
Now I bill around $800 per day, but I only work about 6 super-focused hours, and I use the Pomodoro method every day. My clients are happy because I get a lot of work done, and I'm happy because I have to work less.
This is just doing general PHP dev work (Codeigniter and Laravel frameworks), and if I specialized, and if I focused on the ecommerce or finance industry I could probably make more. Most my clients are in the Rocky Mountain West, and so far I have more work than I can finish.
So if you want to increase your earning potential you should:
1. Specialize and master a niche. 2. Network like your business depends on it. 3. Give free seminars and teach everywhere you go. 4. Label yourself as a consultant. 5. Don't be just a programmer. Work with businesses and fix their problems. 6. Know your worth, and don't be afraid to charge what you're worth. 7. Anchor your costs against how much value you'll make your clients. 8. Keep raising your rates until you can't get any work. 9. Work half as much as you used to. 10. And finally, spend time on things that matter like family, learning, and having fun.
You can filter by location, type of work, and experience: https://www.hellobonsai.com/rates
I know this is on the higher end, but it is definitely possible to find clients that can afford this higher price point. I routinely took work from clients that had hired a cheaper team and weren't satisfied with the final product, needed someone to fix numerous bugs, or to optimize the performance of their technology.
Also, if you are interested in this higher price point, you need to be ready to truly partner with your client and help them solve problems, vs just writing code. This means embedding yourself in their team as much as possible (which can be done remotely; I always worked remote) and understanding the actual problems they had, rather than just building what they asked for.
On top of that, you'll need to own your solution all the way through. If your client doesn't see you as a lot of overhead, and you can act autonomously, then they'll be even more satisfied with your work and rates.
I charge half rate to startups in top accelerators, like YC, that haven't closed an A round yet. The idea is to build relationships with future customers that have lots of growth potential - but who can't afford $120/hour.
I made more when I was working full-time though.
Haven't spent enough time marketing, or really just don't know how to go about it. Living in small-town midwest it seems hard to make contacts. Everyone I've talked to wants to offer like $5000 flat fee for a week of work they need done (and we all know "a week of work" always turns into a month). Nothing long-term and nothing very profitable, so I've turned everything down.
In all likelihood I'll be back on the job market soon.
I earn 12 an hour for my contract work, which I'm quite happy with at the moment because 10 hours a week means I get an extra 500 per month (which is considerable at my age, it pays my rent and bills and some).
I know it doesn't seem much, but I think I'm actually quite lucky to be able to get a gig at my age with my experience.
After reading patio11: 200 < x < 500
Then again, I don't only do software consulting, I ship (or fix, or optimize) solutions on time to help my clients make way more than I cost them.
Last month, I got paid pretty good money for a React+Redux project.
Mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm currently free for 20-30 hours a week and looking for more work.
Also busy with GPS webapplications on asp.Net mvc (embedded device who track trucks and the refrigerator ), WordPress sites, NodeJS ( MVP's),,..
I have a Cordova app before I go to clients, currently landing on too much work because of it ( it's a great conversation starter and builds trust). Will up hourly rates soon, but have a lot of work the next months ( mostly creating webshops for clients). I also work full-time.
My webshop currently lands me 500/ month without marketing, it's something totally different than full-stack development.
I also did something with Pokemon Go to learn how Facebook worked. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12858993 i had the #2 fb page in Belgium. We did events to earn some money with it, it's the #1 rated comment ;)
Currently notified all me clients that i will probably have some delay, but nothing was planned for this month. I do put longer hours currently then i want for now, just to make sure everything will land on time... ( 16 hours per day at the moment, hope soon everything will be back to normal)
Also use a lot of jenkins and automation tools, i hate manual labor. My collegues use 4 tools i wrote for myselve every day. It just takes off a hell of time of lookup up usernames, passwords, phone numbers, logging hours, ... I guess you only need to use it in a "ux friendly" enough way, but just don't sink too much time creating it ;)
This is in addition to my full-time gig.
Assuming I'm booked eight months of the year, that's $38,400.
I could make more if I wasn't going through the agency, but for now, I don't have a name or connections, and I don't have the time to market myself.
So I figure do the agency thing first, build a name, then start soliciting direct clients. Then eventually ditch the full-time gig.
Honestly just stumbling through this.
I am deeply embedded inside the small company I consult for, it is extremely nice because people trust me, are not in my way and are just looking for results.
Really happy, however since I don't only bring coding experience but also business acume I would definitely increase my rate to 150 /hr .
People come to me with problems, I make sure they actually have that problem, I listen to the solution they propose, I actually make my own proposal about what should be done considering both business and technologies, we talk a bit, more problem or constraints arise, we tweak a bit whichever proposal is better and then I go ahead and I implement it.
Time spend talking between 10 and 30 minutes, client have its solution about ready the day after. We are both happy.
My focus is building solutions to business problems. I don't look at it as software but solutions. When you approach it that way people are more receptive to what you have to say.
I don't reveal amount earned but can't complain. I bill monthly, weekly or per project and it works. Forget hourly. Either way, Im raising my rates for 2017. Best of luck.
But no clients so far except for some friends who have promised to pay in the future if their startup gets successful or gets funded :)
I have tried the usual freelance sites but no one really bids on me. The reason is that I am from India and don't have much to show in terms of projects/experience - my previous company had a very strict non disclosure policy, and haven't worked on anything open source yet, don't have a blog, etc.
I am not very serious though and more focussed on a project/"startup" of my own but still looking for pocket money of 20-40$ a day to sustain myself without having to do a job. I am trying at fiverr now. Somehow I just haven't cracked the money nut yet.
I used to work a bit in Upwork (I am doing complex SPA in React/Redux, though I can do it in other stacks as well), and charged 3550$ (depend on a project).
Also, my question is, how you raise the bar? Like, I know I can double my rates and offer "solution" rather just code, but how you find such contracts (people tend to not trust you there), and how do you present yourself?
I like to keep myself occupied for 6 hours on long term projects and keep 2-3 hours for short term projects. It helps me maintain my diversification across clients.
I am a bit of tech nerd and offer discounts for exciting ideas based projects, specially for startup. I think such projects are win-win for me as tech nerd and client as low cost delivery.
Feel free to reach me out at naveensky(.at.)gmail(.dot.)com. I always keep looking for new exciting projects :)
I'm working a full time gig now and haven't taken on any additional work in ages, but depending on contract length I would start at $170 and up.
As I've seen posted here and elsewhere if you're experienced and charge less than yearly salary/2080 * 3 you are giving money back.
(My wife worked as a buyer at one of the national labs and had to purchase contractors, should used to have to tell them what to ask for because more often than not it would be too low for her to quote them out.)
I'm currently free for about 20-30 hours per week, looking for more work.
Feel free to contact me:kovrik0 at gmail.com
For auth, my favorite auth is two fold
For API access => Signature based verification, signing each and every request using a known signature algorithm with the secret key (only known to you and the app developer).
For users => Token based authentication (lots of open source solutions out there).
I see you first sentence was taken directly from this, so I guess you already know about it :)
(I flipped through the 4th edition, and the examples and stuff seemed overmodernized. It felt diluted.)