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Old 07-18-2014, 11:16 AM
 
390 posts, read 536,924 times
Reputation: 660

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubsworth View Post
Why do you want a programming job?
It is hard, boring, long hours, unhealthy, short career and there is no job security.
When you are 40 you will need to be a manager or find a new career anyway.
Why not just skip the programming part and go straight to being a manager?
Or choose a different field entirely.
Uh, what? Programming jobs are well known for having a very good work/life balance. Most programmers don't work more than 40 hours a week unless it's at a startup, a failing company, a very demanding position (in which case you'd be properly compensated for the responsibilities) or just during crunch time. Go look at the Reddit programming threads regarding this - almost nobody works long hours, because programmers aren't productive past 35-40 hours. I remember reading how the average weekly hours for a Java developer was 37. There are plenty of programmers of all age ranges. When you get 20+ years of experience under your belt, you are even more valuable and can be a senior developer and make tons of money, you can go into project management, or you can be a contractor and charge $150+ per hour. Half the job listings for programmers are wanting senior level programmers in their 40s. Software development is easily one of the best careers in the world. Many programmers work from home, too, like myself. I work on my laptop in my backyard pretty frequently.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:32 AM
 
Location: California
28,460 posts, read 28,028,322 times
Reputation: 23239
I used to be a programmer and I liked it myself. Working independently in a comfortable environment, mostly 9-5 unless something went horribly awry. That was a long time ago and I've been out of the game for 23 years but I know some of the systems I wrote are still being used by the company I worked for, and that makes me smile.

I'm not up to speed with this stuff today so I wouldn't attempt it and I know developing software is a whole other beast. But I think it's a fine thing to want to do.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:48 AM
 
820 posts, read 781,693 times
Reputation: 1155
Quote:
Originally Posted by hazergore1198 View Post
Uh, what? Programming jobs are well known for having a very good work/life balance. Most programmers don't work more than 40 hours a week unless it's at a startup, a failing company, a very demanding position (in which case you'd be properly compensated for the responsibilities) or just during crunch time. Go look at the Reddit programming threads regarding this - almost nobody works long hours, because programmers aren't productive past 35-40 hours. I remember reading how the average weekly hours for a Java developer was 37. There are plenty of programmers of all age ranges. When you get 20+ years of experience under your belt, you are even more valuable and can be a senior developer and make tons of money, you can go into project management, or you can be a contractor and charge $150+ per hour. Half the job listings for programmers are wanting senior level programmers in their 40s. Software development is easily one of the best careers in the world. Many programmers work from home, too, like myself. I work on my laptop in my backyard pretty frequently.
Agreed, you have so many options with this career path, the power to build your own software and sell it, teaming up with other developers in a start up, or working at a corp making a good living. At the bank I was interning at, the web developer who worked through a consulting agency was making well over 100/hr that's a lot for the Philly area. But money should not be the only motivation, it should be the desire to create things.
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Old 07-18-2014, 11:57 AM
 
Location: Heart of Dixie
10,289 posts, read 7,628,013 times
Reputation: 22997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubsworth View Post
Why do you want a programming job?
It is hard, boring, long hours, unhealthy, short career and there is no job security.
When you are 40 you will need to be a manager or find a new career anyway...
There's not a thread of truth to anything in that post.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:08 PM
 
14,517 posts, read 10,201,967 times
Reputation: 34873
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirt Grinder View Post
There's not a thread of truth to anything in that post.
Exactly. I'm a programmer and I love it. I'm 47 and I'm not a manager, in fact I make MORE than my manager because I do the heavy stuff while all he does is manage.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:58 PM
 
168 posts, read 138,002 times
Reputation: 287
There's a lot of wishful thinking in this thread. Studies from IEEE and ACM studies have shown that something like 83% of software engineers over age 42 are no longer working as software engineers. Even in Silicon Valley the average salary is in the 90k range. Someone getting paid $150/hr would be making 300k per year. Somehow whenever these whopper hourly rates get claimed nobody can name any specific company where this is happening. So I will... Back in 1998 i made $125/hr as a college dropout in Chicago working as a c/unix programmer for AON. The market has changed quite a bit. Since then, salaries have dropped or at best remained stagnant.
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:18 PM
 
1,305 posts, read 1,096,610 times
Reputation: 1358
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubsworth View Post
There's a lot of wishful thinking in this thread. Studies from IEEE and ACM studies have shown that something like 83% of software engineers over age 42 are no longer working as software engineers. Even in Silicon Valley the average salary is in the 90k range. Someone getting paid $150/hr would be making 300k per year. Somehow whenever these whopper hourly rates get claimed nobody can name any specific company where this is happening. So I will... Back in 1998 i made $125/hr as a college dropout in Chicago working as a c/unix programmer for AON. The market has changed quite a bit. Since then, salaries have dropped or at best remained stagnant.
This was back when there weren't many devs yet. I remember when they told us in high school to go to college for programming because the demand was so high. Just 6 years after that, they had an abundance of programmers. By 2008, programmers started having finding a job. The demand went way down. Fortunately for me, I had a backup plan.
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Old 07-18-2014, 01:26 PM
 
417 posts, read 589,612 times
Reputation: 473
Sounds like you have the right attitude and perseverance to do anything you want.
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Old 07-18-2014, 06:46 PM
 
390 posts, read 536,924 times
Reputation: 660
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubsworth View Post
There's a lot of wishful thinking in this thread. Studies from IEEE and ACM studies have shown that something like 83% of software engineers over age 42 are no longer working as software engineers. Even in Silicon Valley the average salary is in the 90k range. Someone getting paid $150/hr would be making 300k per year. Somehow whenever these whopper hourly rates get claimed nobody can name any specific company where this is happening. So I will... Back in 1998 i made $125/hr as a college dropout in Chicago working as a c/unix programmer for AON. The market has changed quite a bit. Since then, salaries have dropped or at best remained stagnant.
That's because most software developers/engineers go into project management or consulting work, or retire, because they can afford to due to the salaries of software development. Companies are desperate for good talent, and don't care how old people are. I know a programmer in his 50s who gets multiple job offers a week!
Another reason for this is that programming is still a relatively new profession. 20 years ago, there was not nearly the need for programmers as there is now. This is why the bulk of programmers are young. As time passes, the average age of programmers will increase.

Also consider that older workers in general tend to have harder time finding work - there are few careers where this is not the case. Older workers demand higher salaries, won't put up with BS, have families so are more unwilling to travel or put in long hours when needed, etc.

I have worked at consulting companies where we changed the client over $100 per hour (I made $35/hr even if I was the only dev on the project, while the owner pocketed the rest) just for basic (and I know now) amateur PHP/MySQL work. I can imagine people doing more sophisticated work in Java, NodeJS, or Ruby would make even more per hour.

Some good reading material on this subject. Some great and varied perspectives in the comments sections, too:

Where do all the old programmers go? | Application Development - InfoWorld
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Old 07-18-2014, 06:47 PM
 
384 posts, read 231,790 times
Reputation: 325
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chubsworth View Post
There's a lot of wishful thinking in this thread. Studies from IEEE and ACM studies have shown that something like 83% of software engineers over age 42 are no longer working as software engineers. Even in Silicon Valley the average salary is in the 90k range. Someone getting paid $150/hr would be making 300k per year. Somehow whenever these whopper hourly rates get claimed nobody can name any specific company where this is happening. So I will... Back in 1998 i made $125/hr as a college dropout in Chicago working as a c/unix programmer for AON. The market has changed quite a bit. Since then, salaries have dropped or at best remained stagnant.
Which studies specifically? ACM doesn't produce studies....
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