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Your experiences in your first job?


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#1 rAm_y_   Members   -  Reputation: 361

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Posted 15 March 2014 - 11:49 AM

So...how did you find it, I assume most people started as a junior programmer. Did you ever feel out-of-your-depth, what kind of tasks were your set, I read that a junior programmer will generally never see any engine code, were you given menial tasks to do, did you get much mentoring and did you feel like you were learning and progressing in your skills or was it more a case of staying static.

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#2 cardinal   Members   -  Reputation: 825

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Posted 17 March 2014 - 11:53 PM

My first job (I still work at the same company but have changed teams/roles a lot) was building menu screens for a game. I was actually hired with no experience in the tools required for the job, but Flash and ActionScript are fairly easy to learn if you have a solid programming background. I was never given menial tasks (unless you count building menu screens as menial! Ha!)

 

I always had lots of mentoring (both in the areas I was working and in areas I wanted to work in), and was expected to mentor new hires as well. I obviously didn't want to be building menu screens as my entire life, and I was able to find an opening on another team in my company that let me get into other domains. A lot of my original teammates had trouble finding opportunities outside of front end programming and ended up leaving for opportunities at other companies out of frustration.

 

While I would say junior engineers would never be touching engine code, it doesn't mean that people fresh out of university would never touch engine code. However, they would likely not be hired on as a junior developer and would need to prove that they know what they're doing (likely having built their own engine in the past).



#3 fir   Members   -  Reputation: -452

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 04:10 AM

So...how did you find it, I assume most people started as a junior programmer. Did you ever feel out-of-your-depth, what kind of tasks were your set, I read that a junior programmer will generally never see any engine code, were you given menial tasks to do, did you get much mentoring and did you feel like you were learning and progressing in your skills or was it more a case of staying static.

 

My first job (in 2005-6) was the best I was working with - It had some romantic feeling when everything was new

I got weak skills (I knew the language but any of the api used) I usualy didnt understand much of the code i was supposed to 'extend', learned much, got very weak salary, fine pals to work with, ..and i was 10 years younger

 

It was all very fine..[sadly later it become worse,, i can do more but this energy usually was mostly gone] (probably depends on

the team and thw freedom and partying/academia energy if

present or muffled



#4 L. Spiro   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 13214

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Posted 18 March 2014 - 08:20 PM

I found my first job by moving overseas to Thailand.
Everyone was a junior programmer. People had seniority over me only by having been there longer.

I never felt out-of-my depth; back when I was young I had more motivation than with what I knew what to do. Although I rejected one task because it was clearly out of my depth (as well as everyone else’s, and it never got done).

I was tasked at first with making mobile games in Java from scratch.
Later I would diversify into game design, musician, artist, producer, project leader, lead programmer, etc., but in the end I tended to feel I was most useful as a programmer, even if I can draw better or design just as well.

Since I showed an interest in writing reusable low-level code I later got tasked with starting the foundation for our in-house engine, starting with Nintendo DS and Nintendo Wii.

I got no mentoring, and instead it was the opposite. In order to progress I had to give myself extra tasks at the office (whistles and bells to challenge myself while bringing up the quality of the games) and work on my own projects. I wrote MHS in my spare time which allowed me to learn all of the low-level details behind how computers and games work, and I wrote my own game engine to learn core game technologies.

I was always the strongest programmer in all of my companies until my current one, and as a result I feel my growth has been hampered. I have learned half as much in the last 2 years as I did in the previous 8 years (IE 2× as fast).


It is best to always try to find a company where people are better than you, if you can.


L. Spiro
It is amazing how often people try to be unique, and yet they are always trying to make others be like them. - L. Spiro 2011
I spent most of my life learning the courage it takes to go out and get what I want. Now that I have it, I am not sure exactly what it is that I want. - L. Spiro 2013
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#5 fir   Members   -  Reputation: -452

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 01:33 AM

I was always the strongest programmer in all of my companies until my current one, and as a result I feel my growth has been hampered. I have learned half as much in the last 2 years as I did in the previous 8 years (IE 2× as fast).


It is best to always try to find a company where people are better than you, if you can.


L. Spiro

 

I was usually the weaker (or among the weakers) and I also felt that my growth was hampered by this fact; And i can say othervise: It is good (better?) to find acompany where people are not much better than you.

 

(In my first work all were juniors and it was great energy) <--

 

Form me usually unexperienced programmers were much better to talk with becouse they shared some romantic view on programming where experienced programmers I knew were more silent and not social

and not so fun (at all) to work with (there were also men in the middle state (half-seniors?) also less social-energetic then juniors)


Edited by fir, 19 March 2014 - 01:45 AM.


#6 Secretmapper   Members   -  Reputation: 864

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 10:31 PM

I agree with L. Spiro. I usually take this approach in every walk of life (be it academic, work, social). Thing is work with the best, because you can learn from them.

 

 

 

where experienced programmers I knew were more silent and not social

 

If experienced programmers are very anti-social, I guess it could be a problem. Though showing them that you are eager to learn generally helps. I had this superior once who was always easily angered, wanted to do things very quickly, and was very unpopular with the juniors (but not the superiors). Once I showed him that I was willing to learn, he softened up, and I learned buttsload of stuff from him.

 

These experienced ones generally have even more 'romantic view' as you say  - they love what they do so much that they actually want to work with them all the time. What I do is show that I have the common interest in the field and they usually also get excited once I show I have the same viewpoint as them. At least, this works for me :)






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