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Lost at 40s: How to be a better me?
2 points by SuperAnonimo on Oct 28, 2013 | hide | past | favorite | 8 comments
Hello all. I’m an IT guy. I understand hardware, networks, telephony, etc. But I’m not an expert on any of them, meaning, I can work and understand any of the technologies at different levels of complexity, but I’m not an expert on them, and in general I find them boring.

What I really like, is software developing, which I started with logo at the age of 6, then moved to QBasic, Turbo Pascal, Delphi, and Lotus Notes, while in the middle learning whatever language was required by my university: a little bit of C, Visual FoxPro, Cobol, Assembler, Visual Basic and Java. I even tried learning HTML/CSS but never got to finish.

Now, because of a series of misfortunes and/or miss decisions, I ended up truly “mastering” two platforms that never really catched on, or at least not as much as I like: Delphi and Lotus Domino. Also, because of the same series of misfortunes and/or miss decisions, I never got to work on a developers group within the companies I worked at, so all my experience is from working alone, and more or less self-taught.

So now I’m at my 40s, and I want to have my skills updated as fast as possible, so that I can become a better developer, so that I can one day be developer’s manager/lead, or a more interesting developer, so that I can get a more senior job.

So what courses/lessons/books should I take to be a better developer? What courses/lessons/books should I take to know best developing practices? What courses/lessons/books should I take to be a “developer’s manager/lead”? What else should I learn to be a better developer in general?

If you were in my position, what other options would you consider? (I tried PM and didn’t like it by the way).

Also, I’m not from USA, as you can tell by my writing, so anything where I need to be there to take a class is normally a no.

Sorry for the long post, but I’m really lost and want to be a better me to provide for my family!


Because you know Java I would learn the Android platform. There is a large demand for mobile developers all over the world right now, and even being in a foreign country you could contract your services to people in the US for some pretty decent money.

Another reason to go with Android is that you'll be learning a platform that has a pretty interesting future. It seems like some peripherals that might really take off (like the Oculus Rift, Google Glasses, or some TV software) will be using the Android platform, giving you an increased opportunity to get on board something big on the ground floor.

Android has the added benefit of being very well documented, fairly easy to learn, and great free resources that Google gives out, because they want the platform to succeed.

If you truly are decent at development I'd give the plan about 6 months of serious work to start paying off.

I would love to move to the mobile world, either Android, which I use, or iOS. But I'm afraid that I didn't like Java much when I took classes, so I never used it for actual work. I didn't like C for other reasons, so I don't know about Objective-C. Maybe the Java classes I took where no good? Any lessons recommendation? Anything on coursera or similar? Thanks!

There is an Intro to Programming in Java on Udacity[1] and an Algorithms in Java class on Coursera[1]

[1]https://www.udacity.com/course/cs046 [2]https://www.coursera.org/course/algs4partI

Absolutely. Java is probably the most well known language in the world. Some time well spent on Google should yield some gold.

I can not reply to your reply. I would take a look. Udemy is having 75% off on courses for example.

The shortest jump to a more popular language/platform for the type coding your doing is probably to vb.net and exchange programming. From there you could learn c# then go back to learn more java. then go after sql. Then you have the basics for app server development.

Delphi -> C# is a pretty short walk, and there are lots of C#/.NET jobs around. As for learning C#, there are lots of good books and you can download Visual Studio Express and just dive in.

Thanks! I have been thinking about C#, as I understand the guy that designed it also designed Delphi. I would definitively take a look at it. Thanks!

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