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If you are a good programmer and get turned away for that reason, thank yourself for that bit of luck.

I went through college, learned dittily squat when it comes to cs, and now I'm playing catch-up hardcore with js/functional programming/kernel hacking/everything.

Autodidacts rule the world today, and they will only continue to become more influential. Nobody can push you harder than you can push yourself.

While I agree with your points, rejecting a company because it makes that demand isn't quite right. If (hypothetically) you have 2 equally good programmers, and the only difference between them is one has a degree and the other one doesn't, then its natural to choose the former

If you have two equally competent candidates, hire both. It's surprisingly difficult to find good programmers though, so ending up with 2 awesome candidates to choose from is unlikely.

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