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Think about it from the other point of view - the hiring manager has 20 people in front of them who can do the job. You need to tell them a story that shows it is better for that manager to hire you vs. the other 19. You being homeless and not having steady work for the last three years is a big negative (perhaps unfair, but true), so you need to not just show you can code, but show that you have better work ethics, can be more productive, or something else that puts you above and beyond the other 19 guys.

Admittedly, that will be tough. So if you aren't able to do that, then you need to build up a history of good, recent work. Take advantage of being homeless, and offer your services to local non-profits who work with the homeless. They almost all need some tech help, even just to organize and report on their data. Helping out will build up a track record of getting things done, and a network of people who can give you references for your capabilities, as well as let you know who else need help. It is possible that starting a small consulting service doing such things is easier than landing a full-time coding gig.

Let's get real: it's 2018 and we're in the depths of a programmer shortage. No hiring manager has 20 capable people in front of them. A typical hiring manager will have hundreds of garbage resumes that came from people who aren't programmers, or from offshore outsourcing shops that rely on resume spam to get attention. Eventually, after lots of weeding and puffing, the pile is shrunk to maybe three people who are worth interviewing. Of these two lied about their experience, and the last is great, but is difficult to close because they're looking at four other offers all of which are more competitive and interesting. Outside of weeding out garbage, hiring managers spend most of their time in sales mode, desperately trying to close candidates.

In times like this, any reasonably competent programmer who doesn't come off as a total a-hole during the interview will have a job. It might not be the most glorious job in the world, but our OP doesn't seem to care because homelessness.

Part of the problem is convincing people that you are legit. I face a few challenges these days

first off, I don't have a degree so that's one battle, but i'm an isolationist so that's battle #2 and its much harder to win.

During the first half of my career it was easy to find work because i was green and not charging much. towards the middle part i relied on a network of contacts and finding work was super easy. then i decided to isolate myself - i dropped all my contacts, deleted everything i had ever created (several websites that i ran for years), removed myself from social media and now work is very difficult to get. I didn't even realize this was the issue until recently.

In order to fix this:

1. I have started to rebuild my social network and have set up references

2. I now view social media apps as Personal Branding applications and use them as such

3. I built a portfolio site and added a bunch of my old projects to it

4. Look for little projects i can knock out in a few hours or days, work on them, and add them to my site

Are you the same person as the OP? Just checking since account names are similar, but different.

Your story hits close to me. I have never been homeless but I have been through excessive dry spells of no work (I think taking a remote job 5 years ago was a mistake in some ways because it killed my interviewing skills) and had to move back to living with one of my parents. At my mid-30s it feels like your life is a shit show. The jobs I get now have been via "non traditional" means, that is very informal chats instead of lengthy interview processes, and only for short gigs and not long term arrangements.

When I have been out of work for over a year, I too just stopped everything, shut myself in more, thinking that going into "silent mode" and avoiding most contact with friends was gonna help me concentrate more on the job hunt. But it doesn't.

I can tell you to continue what you're doing, building a network and finding ways that people can refer you.

You might think that referrals are a cheese way to short-list your way into an interview, but think of referrals as a trust metric- a quantity that convinces people that you're worth the words you speak.

Can you show us your portfolio site? Honestly I got some of my interviews just from things I had on Github that caught soemone's interest. But I believe they need some kind of novel quality to them- a rehashed tutorial app won't cut it.

I am not OP, I'm the person who posted my own story several weeks ago that OP refers to in his own story.

I agree. I have, at different companies, for the last 6 years, asked people to do a small take home problem that should take a couple hours. BTW I'm aware that some people feel like this is a bad idea but I strongly disagree.

I'd love to be really strict on my reviews of the code but I don't have that luxury because the majority of samples fail one of the following tests:

1. Don't compile 2. Crash under trivial input 3. Have trivially detectable race conditions

I spend alot of time recruiting for remote golang developmers who will be working at a fairly massive scale (not Google but a fortune 50/top 50 Alexa rank). I can't say that I've ever had 20 candidates in front of me who could write race free code with the bare minimum of tests.

That's the huge motivation freeze for some. Knowing that, in a typical hiring process, you have to come in first place among a list of candidates for a given job, when you have generally not been used to seeing yourself as a person who consistently places first at most things in life.

It's not necessarily thinking you are not good at anything, but believing that there is nothing you can be tops at, and just want people to accept your as being good but not amazing.

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