I am an aspiring (at the age of 27) programmer using C++. I have future undertakings including getting a refresher course at a premier University in my country.

I am just interested to know in advance how it is to become a programmer. What are the regular routines that you do to start and end your day (shift) as programmers? Is it all about programming from login to logout? Are there other things that you do such as reporting, documenting, taking a cup of coffee, then coding, coding,coding....

Thank you guys in advance. Your answers will mean a lot to me. - Cheers from Philippines

if you want to know the programmer's task it depend because it's too wide!
the only way to become programmer is to learn and pratice!
as life style we don't sleep at night lol !

It depends on your employer. Most companies expect you do attend meetings, drink coffee, document your code, fill in time sheets etc etc. Others expect you to code 22/24 hours for peanuts and treat you like an idiot slave. If you have any empathy sensors at all you will se the difference in their interview styles and questions.

Most companies expect you do attend meetings, drink coffee, document your code, fill in time sheets etc etc.

No one likes going to meetings, but if you're not expected to go to meetings, there's a decent chance it's because no one thinks you have anything to say that's worth listening to, so that may be a decent hint that they view you as an "idiot slave" as JC phrased it so well, or perhaps an "idiot code monkey" and it's time to move on.

The other possibility is that they have so much respect for you and your time is so valuable and your skills so far surpass everyone else's that you are exempted from the meetings because you need no supervision or guidance whatsoever and you wouldn't be able to explain what you're doing or why because no matter how much you dumb it down, no one else would be able to understand it and only you need to understand it because you'll be the only one who touches that part of the project.

Most of us fall somewhere in between. If you're on any sort of big project, you'll be expected to document and explain what you're doing if for no other reason than no single person should be a potential single point of failure. If you get hit by a bus or take off for greener pastures, someone else has to step in. Thus even the genius described above will probably have to do SOME documentation and attend SOME meetings.

I found that anything important in a meeting got said within the first 15 minutes. As such, I had a program that I could set to send me a text message about 15 minutes in. If I decided the meeting was worthwhile I would stick around. If not I could just say "sorry, I have to take care of this" and leave.

I want to add two thoughts here.

  1. Some think of a programmer is only a programmer if they are employed as a programmer. An artist is an artist if they produce art.
    So get out there and write something. Anything. The more the better.

  2. Money. That's where the code hits the road and brings home the noodles. Just like an artist pay is all over the map. Be frugal, prepare for the rainy day, never stop learning.

A surgeon's job is not necessarily to operate but to operate only when absolutely necessary. I see most programming jobs in the same light. My job as a programmer was not necessarily to write code but to provide solutions to problems. If code was best solution then I wrote code. There were a lot of cases where code was not required.

I read all your comments here and they all collectively gave me a good idea as to what kind of life I would have (wish to have). Meetings, documentations, My gosh those are my things. I like to be stuck in a room, a quiet one, for long hours doing nothing but coding and documenting, then meeting, then drop by at a pantry, then back to coding etc etc etc...

The only probem that I face now is.. WHich is huge.I have been out of touch in programming for years working as a call center agent which I never loved. "I so hate saying those I'm sorry statements and assurance stuff".

I think that my knowledge on C++, which is the only langauge that I still can program in, is on the Intermediate level. I am planning to try a refresher course at a premier University here next year, then try my luck for a programmer position at a nearby company where I work. Crossed fingers.

I am so worried that my mental sharpness could be no longer enough for prgoramming. I don't know. I am just worried. But I know it's what I would love doing and will inspire me enough to not have to drag myself to work anymore.