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I have never had a job as a computer programmer before, and I am considering Comp Sci or Electrical Engineering as a major at college. What Im wondering is once you begin to program for a living and your doing it all day long, what are the most irritating parts of the job? I personally find programming quite fun, but I imagine once you do it all day long it must be easy to burn out on it.

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The main thing that annoys me about coding at work is that when I''m not at work staring at a monitor is the last thing I want to do.

Actually that''s not quite true: I want to get cracking on my game engine, but find it hard to get motivated to use my brain properly when I''m tired and my eyes ache.

I imagine non-programming jobs do the same, it''s just more annoying when you know you use your brain for someone else, but find it hard to get time to do so for your own interests.

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Well, it depends on where you are working.. I code for a living in a development company and it''s cool, even doing it everyday ''cause any project it''s different and you have to learn new things to accomplish the work.

In my job, i don''t find anything irritating, every day I learn something else. If your job it doesn''t give you challenges, then you have a boring job.

A workplace where i couldn''t work is a bank. Working in a bank(here in panama, central america) as programmer is death. I''ve known people who work there and they don''t see to go anywhere. They just do the same thing everyday and no challenge.

That''s all i can say for now.


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I cannot say that I already programm for a living, but before I started studying, I worked three or four months >50 hours per week as a programmer.
What I realized in this time:
- you cannot go on to the next project if you have major problems with the current one.
- you cannot take a (long) creative break and watch some tv for example just to relax when you struggle.
- some projects are really boring!
- you cannot use your own coding style and have to use the one the company wants you to use.
- you also have to write a LOT of comments and documentation.
- deadlines are not really your friend.
- when I come home I couldn''t see my computer anymore (except for checking mails, but definetly not for programming anymore)
- as a result I had to find some other hobbies I could do after work.

On the other hand:
- I met a lot of interesting people (at meetings, conventions, etc.)
- I learned a lot from advanced programmers in the company.
- I earned a lot of money for something I like.
- I enjoyed seeing people using MY work.

For me personally I would say, that I propably will work for about 10 years as a programmer but after that I''m not sure if it''s still that much fun... who knows?

Hope that helps.

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I moved to programming from PC Support because I can make more money programming. I agree with most of the other comments, I don''t code for fun as much as I used to.

Originally coding for a living was fun (lucky me being paid for my hobby), especially when you get a good challenge, but I''ve got cornered in developing in a niche language (Visual FoxPro), and finding it hard to get onto a more interesting development career.

I think there is definitely still a good career in being a programmer. The important thing for you to do while studying is to make code you can demo to potential employers. Not just wizzy graphics, but databases and real world applications. Keep your source from college/Uni and put together a demo CD you can send to prospective employers.

As for burn out, I''ve not been coding for a living long enough. Your biggest threat to your employement enjoyment is unvaried work and being unappreciated by your employers. Which I''ve done and it will tear your soul apart!

Anyway good luck with your studies, and don''t spend too much time drinking and downloading pr0n.

Mouse

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- you cannot use your own coding style and have to use the one the company wants you to use.
- you also have to write a LOT of comments and documentation.


Yep, I don''t work for a company, but I have heard that is very true. You have to comment you code, and explain what everything does and how to use it in a design document.

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quote:
Original post by MainframeMouse
Anyway good luck with your studies, and don''t spend too much time drinking and downloading pr0n.


Lol... but somehow true.

Of course it''s true that you should comment your own (private) code, but my experience was that I had to write more documentation than I did before. And on some days I wrote more documentation than actual code.

I think that depends on the company and the kind of project you''re working on. If it is a small tool which is only used for internal uses than it won''t be that much commented. Other code I had to comment a lot. Especially code which might be sell to other companies in the future.
I found also the other extreme. Once I had to extend an existing small tool and there were no comments at all. And I can only say that it was a pain in the ass to read through this (tricky) code. As a result I rewrote the whole thing.

But as I mentioned: those are just my experiences. And in companies where several programmers are working on the same code they will also have to comment there code. (or you''re called e.g. Carmack and are the only one who is working on a part of a project and you know what you are doing and nobody else will work on the code then the company might let you do it your way. In all other cases I think you have to comment quite a lot...)

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quote:
Original post by asdasd12345
...what are the most irritating parts of the job?

* Having to deal with company politics
* Having to deal with managers that don''t know the first thing about coding, but make decisions which affect how and what you code
* Having to spend tons of time writing documents just to make something understandable for "the suits" - "I don''t understand your code, so you need to write something to make it clearer for me."

Very little of this occurred while I was in the game industry. For an industry that makes games, which most people look at as childish/immature/etc, the people where magnitudes of order more professional and compentent than those I''m now dealing with outside of the industry.

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I work in a banking/financial software company. On one hand I love it:

1. Pay is great
2. We don''t have crunch time, but we do have disaster recovery exercises which take up a weekend a couple times a year
3. Because I have experience with ''real'' programming I''m a superstar.
4. Our managers are all former programmers
5. No-stress atmosphere
6. The work is really easy.

Bad things:

1. The work is really easy.
2. the stuff I do get to program is so boring it will melt your eyeballs.

I''m planning on building up some investments then moving on and starting my own small business after 5-10 years. (yes the pay is very good)

My advice? DO INTERNESHIPS IN COLLEGE!!!

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By far the most annoying thing for me was the insane amount of documentation required by my company. I don''t mean documentation as in comment lines--those are a good thing. I mean endless design documents, process flows, QA templates, business justifications, implementation requests, etc. I am telling the literal truth when I say that on many projects, the paperwork took 20 times as long as the actual work itself.

Of course that will vary from company to company, but it''s a common complaint.

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quote:
Original post by asdasd12345
Is there any age bias in the industry? I will be around 30 when I finish my degree, and Im worrying a bit if I will be overlooked by employers because I will be older than other graduates.


If you make it clear that you won''t be leaving them for a while, and you can show that you are very good at what you are applying for, I can''t see them rejecting you.

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quote:
Original post by asdasd12345
Is there any age bias in the industry? I will be around 30 when I finish my degree, and Im worrying a bit if I will be overlooked by employers because I will be older than other graduates.


There is noway your employer will ever know your age unless you tell them. Discrimination based on Age or Marital status is just as illegal as discrimination based on race or sex, in the US anyway.

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Hello asdasd12345,

Most programmer in my department are Comp Sci or Electrical Engineering, we have on math major and then me Aerospace Engineering.

I work for a big US Defense Company so the down side is the management BS and procedures up the you know what.
But my little group gets these little contracts (only few 100k to 1 million) so we have leeway to avoid a lot of the BS.

But it real interesting work. They hire a woman the just got out with a BS in CS shes about 40. So age should matter in bigger companies, Now I use to do arcade game model and programming back in 94-96 time frame. And it was a little more geared toward the younger. But I say this doesn't matter if you young or older if you’re just out of collage you will make the same mistakes programming and will have to learn how to program well.

You'll make good money, have a skill that can use in a wide range of places.
Just try to avoid management as much as possible, because once there its downhill on a paperwork hill.

Lord Bart

[edited by - lord bart on November 29, 2003 6:52:16 PM]

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There is noway your employer will ever know your age unless you tell them. Discrimination based on Age or Marital status is just as illegal as discrimination based on race or sex, in the US anyway.

It shouldn't be, employers should be allowed to hire and fire who they wish. If someone doesn't hire a good programmer because they are 40, lets say, they are hurting themselves. First of all, they are making sure that many skilled programmers will never work for them because it is against company policy to allow them to, and second, some other company could pick them up, meaning one more qualified worker at some other company. They are hurting themselves.


Same with race. If a company decided never to hire black people, than they have truly screwed themselves over. They should have that right, but think about what they are doing. They are first of all limiting their hiring pool, making it so their are some qualified people who they will never have working for them. Second, they are hurting their customer base, with a gaurantee that no blacks will go there, and same with most whites, including myself. In fact, most people wouldn't want to work there because of their rule, regardless of their race. And third, all of those potential customers and employees are going to other companies.

Just the capitalist way of looking at things.

[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 10:53:16 PM]

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quote:
Original post by PlayGGY




Same with race. If a company decided never to hire black people, than they have truly screwed themselves over. They should have that right, but think about what they are doing. They are first of all limiting their hiring pool, making it so their are some qualified people who they will never have working for them. Second, they are hurting their customer base, with a gaurantee that no blacks will go there, and same with most whites, including myself. In fact, most people wouldn''t want to work there because of their rule, regardless of their race. And third, all of those potential customers and employees are going to other companies.

Just the capitalist way of looking at things.

[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 10:53:16 PM]


Besides, please explain the purpose behind being racist, I am friends with many "blacks" and they are identical to all the "whites"

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quote:
Original post by maxd gaming
quote:
Original post by PlayGGY




Same with race. If a company decided never to hire black people, than they have truly screwed themselves over. They should have that right, but think about what they are doing. They are first of all limiting their hiring pool, making it so their are some qualified people who they will never have working for them. Second, they are hurting their customer base, with a gaurantee that no blacks will go there, and same with most whites, including myself. In fact, most people wouldn't want to work there because of their rule, regardless of their race. And third, all of those potential customers and employees are going to other companies.

Just the capitalist way of looking at things.

[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 10:53:16 PM]


Besides, please explain the purpose behind being racist, I am friends with many "blacks" and they are identical to all the "whites"



What...!? Where was I racist? I said companies should have the right to choose who they give money to in exchange for services, but if they discriminate based on something other than skill and qualification, they are hurting themselves. What is racist in that?



[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 11:31:14 PM]

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quote:
Original post by PlayGGY

What...!? Where was I racist? I said companies should have the right to choose who they give money to in exchange for services, but if they discriminate based on something other than skill and qualification, they are hurting themselves. What is racist in that?

[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 11:31:14 PM]


You weren''t, but don''t read too far into it. Just take a look at the recent posts by maxdgaming, and you will find how unintelligible he/she can be.


"Let me just ejaculate some ideas"

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quote:
Original post by LuckyNewbie
quote:
Original post by PlayGGY

What...!? Where was I racist? I said companies should have the right to choose who they give money to in exchange for services, but if they discriminate based on something other than skill and qualification, they are hurting themselves. What is racist in that?

[edited by - PlayGGY on November 29, 2003 11:31:14 PM]


You weren''t, but don''t read too far into it. Just take a look at the recent posts by maxdgaming, and you will find how unintelligible he/she can be.


"Let me just ejaculate some ideas"



Heh, yeah, some of his previous posts are bad, but really I just think he is one of this extremely pollically correct people, who will call you a racist if you meantion the word "race".

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quote:
Original post by PlayGGY
There is noway your employer will ever know your age unless you tell them. Discrimination based on Age or Marital status is just as illegal as discrimination based on race or sex, in the US anyway.

It shouldn''t be, employers should be allowed to hire and fire who they wish. If someone doesn''t hire a good programmer because they are 40, lets say, they are hurting themselves.

...

Same with race. If a company decided never to hire black people, than they have truly screwed themselves over.

...

Just the capitalist way of looking at things.



It sure is nice to think that the capitalist system works things out so that the interests of the corporations and those of the workforce align all nice and neat.

What a fairytale!!

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It sure is nice to think that the capitalist system works things out so that the interests of the corporations and those of the workforce align all nice and neat.

What a fairytale!!


OK then, tell me where I went wrong! What did I say that was false, and why is it false? And plus, do you really think a business owner shouldn''t have the right to choose who he gives money to in exchange for their services?

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