i'm new to this site, and find everyone really knowledgeable, but I'm interested in finding a new career in programing. The problem or is it a problem, I'm 49 and can maneuver around sites, but have limited ability or little knowledge about software. Where do I begin, there seems to be alot of info out there, and it's tough to follow. Can anyone guide me to start the learning process?

well that all depends what do you want to make programs for ? windows / linux and are they going to be graphical or just a console program (black screen white lettering )

A new-comer should be directed to Python. It is real and it is fun.
I have never seen a powerful yet easy language like this. One can almost learn the basic in a weekend.
1.Go to http://python.org/
2. Download Python for you platform (most GNU/Linux Distros have it pre-installed)
3. Start reading the official Tutorial http://docs.python.org/tutorial/