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Is computer programming worth it? It seems like you have to spend a LOT of time learning a new language (employers in California are now asking for 4 years of professional experience), use it for a time, then watch it come obsolete and take a lower paying job so as to get experience in a newer language. You can spend twenty years working hard, and all of that hard work becomes useless if the language of choice shifts.

Does it make sense to look for a job in another technical area, such as electronics engineering or network administration? I love computer programming, and am quite good at it, but if you can't find good paying jobs in the field, then what's the point?

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Last Post by jbennet
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Programming languages are like cars, you only learn to drive ONCE.

In other words, you only learn HOW to program once, then picking up a new language is a few weeks of bookwork.

One way to avoid just being a code monkey is actually get involved in some of the design work as well. This too is very skilled, but neither is it short of ever changing methods and tools.

> It seems like you have to spend a LOT of time learning a new language
Pick something old, like COBOL or FORTRAN.
Neither of those are going anywhere near obsolete any time soon.

> employers in California are now asking for 4 years of professional experience
That's just supply and demand.
At the height of .com, all you needed to do was hold the mouse the right way round and you were in.

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All I know is once you get to know the basic principle of programming, then all new languages and new techniques are just decorations, it's not stopping, its getting any better and better. Just go with the flow, once you have your job, then applied whatever new techniques there is. It might give you a raise.:)

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>Is computer programming worth it?
Yes. Programming is one of the few fields where you can flex your creativity and not starve. Besides, I'd much rather be constantly learning than get into a monotonous rut because my skillset doesn't need to evolve.

>employers in California are now asking for 4 years of professional experience
Employers in Georgia ask for all kinds of impossible combinations of education and experience. Just because they ask for it doesn't mean they'll turn away everyone who doesn't match the requirements to the letter.

>You can spend twenty years working hard, and all of that
>hard work becomes useless if the language of choice shifts.

I suppose that's a deal breaker if you're only in it for the money.

>but if you can't find good paying jobs in the field, then what's the point?
What could be better than doing what you love for a living? Would you rather do a job you hate for better pay? When I hear people say stuff like "I love programming" and "if it doesn't pay well, what's the point?" in the same sentence, I think that one of the statements is a lie.

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i agree with the above posts except for one thing : i dont thing learning a new language means anything when you refer to it just as language learning. you have to develop some application with that language to earn some money, in that case you have to learn how to develop application with that language, and i think it is a totally different thing. developing c# application on VS IDE is pretty different than creating a C application on AIX server.

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When I hear people say stuff like "I love programming" and "if it doesn't pay well, what's the point?" in the same sentence, I think that one of the statements is a lie.

But it does pay well, so I don't know why anyone would say those things in the same sentence to begin with. And the answer is yes, it is worth it. Once you put in the initial couple years of work, the relearning stage isn't nearly as difficult. But even the initial learning stage is pretty cool because you learn a lot of interesting things about computers, programming languages, and the capabilities of technology. It can be frustrating at times, but how do you expect to learn something truly worthwhile if it is not challenging? To be perfectly honest, I would not be a programmer for a living if it did not pay well. But don't make it sound as if it isn't an enjoyable field, or as if the frustration and difficulty that everyone who is good at programming has faced wasn't worth it, because for me, it was definitely worth it.

Also, I'm sure you realized Narue, but only the first part of my post was directed at you, the rest was directed at the OP.

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"watch it come obsolete"

Languages never really die.

C is going storng after like 30 years
And many companies still use FORTRAN (like 50 years old), ADA (again like 25-30 years old)

Just because its not the latest and greatest doesnt mean there isnt jobs for it

And i agree with everyone before who says that you only learn HOW to program once, then picking up a new language is a few weeks of bookwork. Its like this with any job, to an extent.

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