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Calling all IT professionals.... Dynamics Processors (HW)
Old 7th September 2018
  #1
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foamboy's Avatar
Calling all IT professionals....

Okay, the reason I am posting in the Moan Zone is because it is partially a moan and I couldn't decide what other forum I should post in.

As result of a LOT of life and emotional changes, I am considering a new career and making music/performance a hobby for a while or maybe for the rest of my existence on this rock, idk.

I am currently considering a path in IT and I am just curious as to the general feeling some of you have about that industry.

I am just about to be 55 and I have been my own boss for nearly 30 years, so as you can imagine, the idea of being an "employee" is daunting. I am considering trying to start my path by obtaining the old A+ certification.

I am really just trying to get a sense of the overall vibe of that industry: is it stressful, is it boring, is it great,is it just another job....I think you get the picture. Also, do you think my age will be an asset or a detriment?


I probably have some other questions, but at this point I am just interested in getting a discussion rolling.

Thanks,

fb
Old 7th September 2018
  #2
I have had three interns in the past three years who are on the path to becoming IT Professionals. They seem psyched and ready for the challenges presented by the profession. If you have experience in IT and feel comfortable doing it full time then I say go for it. If you think you are going to start learning at 55 and have no experience with IT then it may not be a great idea. Either way YOU are the only one who can make the decision. Best of luck!

Right now the IT profession is booming. How long that continues is something I have no knowledge of. I do know that when I was in College in the late 1960's teaching was in the same position and everyone wanted to be a teacher. That boom ended in the 1980's. FWIW
Old 8th September 2018
  #3
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This is a fantastic topic, and I don't think it belongs in the Moan Zone at all.

Brief background on myself...(I'm 40 now)

I've been performing live since 16 on drums, eventually touring with some of my favorite artists/bands as an adult. When I was 26 I began to dive into the rabbit hole of DIY recording, overlapping my path in drumming. I never intended to make a living at audio, but it eventually happened when people began to pay me to record drum tracks for them. Mind you, I got into to that game early without really knowing there was a need for it. Dumping the earned money into better gear and beginning to record other bands, the endeavor grew naturally. Eventually I started a successful mobile recording company, lasted for about 10 years, and now I just work from home 75% of the time at our modest studio. Here I do a variety of audio projects, including overseeing an AV team at a church part time and doing consulting for people who have home studios...which leads to the IT discussion.

About 4 years ago one of my clients referred me to a church in another state that needed help with their sound system. They wanted to know what to get rid of and what to buy that would suite them for the next 5 years or so, plus help train their volunteer sound personal (which was the biggest issue they had, of course!). Eventually I was referred again and again, then I realized a lot of people with home studios are in the same boat. I charged what I thought was worth my time (not cheap), no one ever complained about the money. You have to remember people in this position are at a point of desperation and often at wits end with their gear. Sometimes all it took was one consulting session to get them up and running. I also realized I could help people properly record their crappy music in half the time and make twice as much, instead of me doing it! I found it very rewarding and enjoyed making friends in the process.

Anyway one of my clients who was in his mid 40's at the time was an IT professional, but also a lifelong hobbyist musician with a home studio. He had the means to purchase a lot of high end gear, his studio was nice but his music was okay and was convinced certain pieces of gear would make him and his music sound better that it actually is. You know what I mean. We got along fine, had lots of great talks about life in general. I remember hime telling me that a lot of his longtime IT colleagues are musicians. He also said many of them get to a point where they'll have more time later in life to do more music and are at a point with their IT career where they do that (like him). AND that there are many people who did music full time until midlife hit and decided to go into IT because they wanted something more stable (or different).

He was absolutely right! Two people who I've known since the 90's that were full time musicians, both successful in their own right, went into IT in their late 40's. These were the few of many who kept going, lifers. We all have those people we know bail out along the way, giving up all together for whatever reason. But these two swore they'd go to the grave doing music no matter (again we all know these types!). There are many part-time musicians and studio people I know that do contractual IT work or work for a company here called RED HAT. They're doing well.

Personally, I'm at a point where I don't feel challenged in audio anymore. I've done so much and I love teaching/sharing/helping people sometimes more. Having said that, I'll always play drums...audience or not. I'm positive I don't want to record or produce for an income when I'm 50. I'll probably still have a studio here at home, but it would be more for personal use. Right now, I can't make anymore money doing what I'm doing, I've hit the professional ceiling on what I can make with my time and talent.

Some of solitary jobs that interest me are forensic audio, audio archiving, and audio restoration. As with the OP, I'm used to being my own boss and making my own schedule. I've done other jobs in the past, bred and raised horses and worked at a state park building trails to name a couple. Having some time in nature is healthy for me.

Cheers,
TM
Old 8th September 2018
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Piranhadrum View Post
This is a fantastic topic, and I don't think it belongs in the Moan Zone at all.


TM
Thanks for the encouragement/optimism.

Yes, I too have thought about some more solitary professions as you mentioned.....audio forensics, consulting, things of that nature. However it seems like those are so few and far between, that I might be better off working in a retail store.

I think that pursuing an IT certification is a linear decision, since most of us audio geeks have to almost be our own IT guys in order to keep up with the tools we use currently. It wasn't until I got serious about digital audio/midi that I ever thought about building my own computer! Now, I am kind of a resident IT geek for friends and family and at this point I know just enough to be dangerous.

My original inquiry was really to get a feel for how that industry really works. Are most IT pros being overly micro managed, are they free to do what needs to be done in order to accomplish a task, are they riding motorized skate boards like Google employees......you know what I mean. I do have a friend that sort of fell into an IT career and to him it is just a pita job, which I understand completely. However, he is fortunate enough to work for sort of a boutique company which is small and everybody gets along. Obviously, none of us has a crystal ball, but I was just fishing for any insight into that profession that may either encourage me OR discourage me. Either way, it might help with a decision.

Thanks again for the long and thoughtful reply.

fb
Old 9th September 2018
  #5
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I originally went to college to learn audio engineering then started panicking when most of them had to teach just to get by, they'd do the odd mixing / live engineering gig but for the most part when I started the "biz" was already going down the pan.

So as a backup I did separate courses in electrical engineering and computer sciences.. Got a few industry level certs (CCNA, Comp TIA+) and then I struggled to get a job for a while.

You're kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place at the beginning, over here at least it's hard to get into the industry without experience. Also to factor in the learning curve is massive, you will spend years certifying in one thing another whether it has any "real" relevance to you or not like ITIL..

Fortunately someone did give me a shot at being a PBX engineer because of my heavy interest in audio engineering, at the start I was working 75 hours a week doing installations (I earn't $10K a year at that point) and then moved on to do even more hours when I moved over to the programming and research team.

At that point I burnt out, then decided to take some years out to follow my passions in music / recording etc. which due to income issues didn't last that long, I started supplementing with contracts which did me a massive favour. I received tons of experience working in multiple sectors on all sorts of technical audio engineering projects, I did everything from MPLS network multi-conferencing systems to consumer AD / DA system design in various roles (even if I was the tea fetcher or cabling lackey in the beginning)..

After another five / six years of that I could THEN start demanding decent $$$'s working in higher end roles like R&D architecture, when you start hitting specialisms then you're doing good.

So in my experience, expect to spend a LOT of time studying, expect to deal with a lot of "red tape" if you work for larger outfits (which a lot of it makes sense but it does get in the way of doing some times) and don't expect it to pay very well until you get up the ladder.

On the flip side, for the most part you are treat with a lot of respect for your knowledge and expertise. You get a lot of benefits, discounts etc.

When I worked for large retail chains at college I felt somewhat like a number, which isn't the case in technical careers..
Old 11th September 2018
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by foamboy View Post

My original inquiry was really to get a feel for how that industry really works. Are most IT pros being overly micro managed, are they free to do what needs to be done in order to accomplish a task, are they riding motorized skate boards like Google employees......
I've been employed in IT for 20 years as of this year primarily working on software development.
I'm 46 now and in all honestly I wish I could get the hell out of it. I'm tired of keeping up with the changes in technology and all of the associated buzzwords. Two years ago everybody had to have skills in Microservices, last year everybody needed skills in DevOps, this year everybody needs to be a data scientist. It is the same nonsense with technology stack components which there's new ones every couple of months and then everybody has to learn those too in order to have a competitive skill set.

All of the places I've worked in the past decade the management is either complete and total neglect or 5 project managers lined up at your desk in the morning to breathe down your neck the entire day. There doesn't seem to be an in-between, those two management styles must be all they teach in college anymore.
Then most places the middle management are younger people with no real experience but plenty of college. Anything outside of textbook knowledge is beyond them making for all kinds of bad decision making in the real world. None of these people know the meaning of the word leadership. You simply do not find this at all anymore unless you work in a military software environment. But then you're most likely a contractor and working as a slave beneath the civil service employees in that shop who do zero work and hate the contractors for making more money than them despite the fact their health insurance beats yours 10 times over.

As far as being free to do what needs to be done - no. Most of your time is spent dealing with red tape, office politics, endless pointless meetings and fighting against the poor decision making of middle management or trying to get them to actually decide on what to do. When they finally make a decision they tell you what to do verbally so there's no written record and if that decision has bad results you get thrown under the bus when they deny having said anything to you about it.


Then there's politics. Most IT companies these days are ruled with extreme liberal biases so you'll be discriminated against and setup for failure if they suspect you don't share their mentality in even the littlest ways. This is doubly so if you’re a Caucasian male over 40....

If you have prior military experience make sure to take it off of your resume.
I recently added mine to my resume and LinkedIn profile and it had the effect of completely stopping all contacts from recruiters and HR people altogether. Where prior to the change I was getting pinged, emailed or called several times a day every day.
It worked better than changing your status to Not Seeking Jobs.

Finally there's the age discrimination. I feel I get this alot but it is impossible to prove it. Anywhere you go where you are interviewed by people younger than you virtually guarantees you will not get the job. Especially in places with millenials in change of hiring decisions.

As for the Skate Boards and other millennial playground perks advertised by today's IT companies, they might have them on premises but nobody dares to actually use any of it. And it collects dust and serves as decorations for visiting clients and business partners to admire and be impressed with.

Upward mobility isn't happening either unless you know somebody. Once you reach a senior level within your specialty the chances of being promoted further up are 4% for those with multiple degrees in the field. If like me you don't have a degree and you don't know somebody then well that's as far as you get. Period.

I do not recommend technology as a career choice to anybody anymore. Healthcare, management, financial planning, architecture, clinical research are all better choices by far.

Last edited by Hollowman9; 11th September 2018 at 05:37 PM..
Old 12th September 2018
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hollowman9 View Post
I've been employed in IT for 20 years as of this year primarily working on software development.


I'm 46 now and in all honestly I wish I could get the hell out of it. I'm tired of keeping up with the changes in technology and all of the associated buzzwords. ....

Finally there's the age discrimination.
Thanks for your extensive post. Yes, these are two of the things that concern me about IT.


Thanks again,

fb
Old 12th September 2018
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by foamboy View Post
Thanks for your extensive post. Yes, these are two of the things that concern me about IT.


Thanks again,

fb
The lack of leadership in management is pretty horrible too. The job I left earlier this year turned into a mass exodus because the VP of Development threatened to replace us all with offshore contractors in India if we didn’t shape up.
What a motivational all-hands meeting that was. A month later I was surrounded by empty desks after more than 2/3rds of the dev staff did their rats leaving a sinking ship re-enactment.
Old 12th September 2018
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foamboy View Post
I am considering trying to start my path by obtaining the old A+ certification.
Don't. It's worthless. Certs in stuff like ITIL etc are better. Here's a relevant article (google is your friend do the research ): The 10 Highest-Paying IT Certifications of 2018 | PCMag.com

Ignore the PMP one though; you don't have the experience needed. And honestly lack of experience is going to make it tough (but not impossible) to get into.

Quote:
I am really just trying to get a sense of the overall vibe of that industry: is it stressful, is it boring, is it great,is it just another job....I think you get the picture.
That's impossible to answer because it's subjective and jobs vary a lot. A big factor is how into "I.T. stuff" you are. If you hate it or think you can simply tolerate it to get a job, I think you're setting yourself up for a fall. (Frankly I fall into both categories overall, but I have a lot of experience and willing to endure it long enough to retire)

Quote:
Also, do you think my age will be an asset or a detriment?
With no experience? Very much a detriment, sorry. Age discrimination is alive and well. Not meaning to shoot you down, if you get a cert or 2 you may get into some entry-level thing (which still aint bad pay generally speaking). Just keep expectations modest. Do you have a degree of any kind?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Hollowman9 View Post
I do not recommend technology as a career choice to anybody anymore. Healthcare, management, financial planning, architecture, clinical research are all better choices by far.
Great overall post with sadly a lot of truth to it, but also some generalizations which don't hold true everywhere...as for your options, I know people in healthcare who would shoot that suggestion down violently, "management" is not a career path, architecture takes a degree, and I'm not sure what "clinical research" even means-?

Basically corporate America blows donkey dongs, it isn't limited to IT by any means. Management has largely become a joke, run by incompetent/uncaring aholes, and people flit in and out of jobs like never before. It's a soul-sucking experience.

And now that I've painted such a rosy picture....

It shouldn't be discarded either. There are a lot of jobs out there with good pay and bennies, the catch of course being getting in the door. The importance of how good your resume is and your interviewing skills are cannot be overstated...and what constitutes "good" is somewhat of a moving target, so again, do the research. g/l
Old 12th September 2018
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill5;13514054


Not meaning to shoot you down, if you get a cert or 2 you may get into some entry-level thing [I
(which still aint bad pay generally speaking)[/I]. Just keep expectations modest. Do you have a degree of any kind?

Quite frankly, this is all I am hoping for. I get my limitations and I sure as heck am not gonna set the IT world on fire and neither do I expect to become some "senior" anything. I am only taking into account something that interests me that will hopefully allow me to make a decent living until I retire or die...which ever comes first.

fb
Old 12th September 2018
  #11
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Understood. Again, if you have a degree (even if not I.T.) and/or any experience, either technically or in a more general way (supervisory/management, etc), it couldn't hurt. Definitely downplay the strictly musical/artistic aspects of your career on your resume and try to emphasize any tech, mgt, and/or problem-solving aspects. One advantage your age may provide, generally speaking, is more maturity and wisdom (i.e. "life experience") than a kid coming right out of college.
Old 12th September 2018
  #12
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There's a lot written in the above posts, some of which I disagree with vehemently, while some resonates quite a bit. However, "keeping up with changes", yes, is the name of the game. And everything is changing very rapidly.

I'm currently reducing my company's reliance on the tools and techniques that I've made my bread and butter with for the past 25 years. It's been scary for a lot of people I work with who are also experienced in the same, and there was a lot of heel dragging. But, we've gotten past the hard part with our departments mostly intact, and everyone is on board with retooling their skill sets. I'm not aware of anyone quitting because they felt they were going to be left behind. If they were, I would ask them to reconsider, because the future is exciting.

It's not easy. The learning curve was very steep for me, but I'm able to digest large swathes of technology and boil them down to the tools and processes we need to be successful. Now that I've done it, I've been able to restructure multiple departments in a way that secures their value to the company.

As far as degrees go, they're certainly helpful, but not necessary. The most important thing is to be productive right away without a bunch of rudimentary training. After that, an adult, professional outlook, where you're looking to add value to your employer is the biggest thing. Once you're in and doing that, a degree is secondary. One way that a degree helps is that, in general, those who have them are more experienced in understanding how many components fit into a bigger picture. But a degree is far from the only way to learn that, and I know a lot of people who are successful without degrees. And when applicants show up with IT specific degrees, I always wonder how schools get away with selling them. Someone with two years of any IT experience at all usually interviews and performs better, degree or no.
Old 12th September 2018
  #13
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In the biz for 35+ years. My son recently graduated from a two year vocational school with a system administration degree and is doing very well in his career--but he is smarter than me and perhaps 9 out of 10 it types.

My impression is that with zero experience, its best to get some sort of educational certificate, if for no other reason than to demonstrate a commitment to the profession. I am not sure A+ carries much weight except maybe for a help desk job. Having said that, help desk can be a way to get started in the business--but be sure there is a path out as I personally do not give your help desk types much credit for being tech heavy when I am looking at job candidates--maybe others do. Lots of time desktop support is an entry level job and if one is lucky they can move up to server support. The more you can do--and that means the more you know--the more you get paid.

Reading above, let me be clear--A pass the test certificate means something, but only if its really rigorous like a Cisco CCIE. When I mean certificate I am talking about some sort of vocational school that grants some sort of degree. But I am not sure if a non college degree is really called a degree, so I called it a certificate.

Do not let nay sayers let you get discouraged--if you go after it hard and long enough, you can get it.

Might be good to go to a vocational school and discuss carers with them. Trades are interesting to me, but union trades have some multi-year levels that can keep full earnings a few years away--at least the ones I looked into do. I think it would be fun to work with my hands or look at physical devices rather than virtual ones--but I am making the coin and hard to step away from that being 6 years from retirement.
Old 12th September 2018
  #14
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My 2 cents as a 47 years old IT guy? If you have a community college in your area enroll in their IT program. You'll have to take a bunch of classes that will expose you to a variety of disciplines, networking, programming, hardware etc. That will help you decide what specifically what you want to do. Once you decide, dig deep. Be the best ****ing whatever you can. In a college environment you'll get lots of hands on projects that you can do and possibly extend beyond what was taught in class. You can mention those projects during interviews. Smarts, curiosity and motivation in one story! Good luck!
Old 12th September 2018
  #15
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I am an IT professional. I have worked as an inside end user tech when there was no internet yet. Nobody knew, or cared to know how or why about the desktop running Windows 3.1 -> netware server didn't work as intended. They all said "do your thing" and left.

Now I run my own IT support company with my fighter pilot tech of a wife. She handles all the initial hand holding that comes in the door as I would have closed and locked that door years ago. Today, with the internet, everyone is an expert or at least their son in law is. And while they are at their wit's end and came to us, oh they come armed with every keyword and phrase they learned so as to challenge us so they don't feel so dumb. AKA with a chip on their shoulder because they thought they had it all (the internet for one) under control. Defrag'ed it they say. etc..

After we get them to leave so we can fix what is really wrong (malware up the kazoo) then we're techs.

I have a buddy who is real sharp who worked inside the fire department here doing IT and couldn't get away. 8 hours a day. Fighting with "normals" all on the internet at once. - It can get to be like a daycare Bad thing is, is that the boss will wonder why with you on staff, why all these bad things are happening.............

I'd rather do dishes somewhere.
Nobody will ever challenge you about that claiming their kid is a wiz at it. (implying you're not).

IT techs are not revered or even liked. There is a envy because we can talk to the animals and they can't.

You're going to do a lot of drinking with your fellow grunts.
Maybe one will look pretty after a few.

Old 12th September 2018
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kafka View Post
As far as degrees go, they're certainly helpful, but not necessary.
That depends on the position, as well as where you are in the country. From what I gather on the West Coast, they aren't that big of a deal...but most other places, they very much are. No experience and no degree? It's hard to get even entry-level jobs w/that (help desk stuff is probably the best bet), even with some certs, but that can vary.

Quote:
The most important thing is to be productive right away without a bunch of rudimentary training. After that, an adult, professional outlook, where you're looking to add value to your employer is the biggest thing. Once you're in and doing that, a degree is secondary.
Yeah. But you have to get the job first.

Quote:
One way that a degree helps is that, in general, those who have them are more experienced in understanding how many components fit into a bigger picture.
Based on my experience that isn't true at all; there's no correlation. Really the degree is first and foremost a square checker. Of course specific knowledge like courses in programming languages or building/maintaining networks are important...and I emphasize SPECIFIC. The rest is largely fluff to a prospective employer.



Quote:
Originally Posted by ponzi View Post
Might be good to go to a vocational school and discuss carers with them.
Good idea....I would add contact some IT recruiters and ask for a little of their time too.

I would also scour job openings online (more junior/entry level stuff) for your area.
Old 12th September 2018
  #17
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I do IT for a K-12 school in the middle of nowhere. No degree in IT and learned most of it on the job before the last network admin left. I was around here when we got the first Apple IIe computers in so I've been involved with technology for a long time. I support around 400 computers/printers/switches/servers/phones/WAPs/etc. plus miles of cable and fiber connecting 7 buildings. I've applied for positions in the city but never get a response--I'm sure it's age discrimination. I'm certainly over-qualified for any position I've applied for. Guess I'll be here till I retire.

If you enjoy kids, you might find an IT position at a school. I know it won't pay what other IT positions pay, but the benefits might be worth it. Plus it will be a good place to get some hands on experience with a huge variety of IT problems to solve and get some real-world IT experience for another position.
Old 12th September 2018
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mandodon View Post
I do IT for a K-12 school in the middle of nowhere. No degree in IT and learned most of it on the job before the last network admin left. I was around here when we got the first Apple IIe computers
Things have changed a lot since then.
Old 13th September 2018
  #19
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First off, I would like to thank everybody for their passionate and informative posts. You have given me much to digest.

As to those of you suggesting that I should get a degree....sorry....that ain't gonna happen. I am too old and I don't think anybody is going to want to hire a fresh outta college 60 year old to do anything. Sorry, but I am too realistic to think other wise. TBH with everyone, I am looking for the quickest and perhaps shortest path to getting into something I can physically do as an old guy AND to get out of the BS retail job I am currently at in order to make ends meet.

I do have a local community college that does offer certifications in many Comptia and Cisco courses and a few other computer courses.

As mentioned , at this point I probably would settle for a basic help desk job in order to gain some real world training and perhaps be able to network a bit. (sorry, no pun intended). Perhaps a help desk is a bad idea and I won't end up learning anything and then I'll be stuck at help desk until I die.I do have a nephew who is a headhunter for company that does have an IT staff in order to handle their contracted clients, and he has said that they have a difficult time finding people to do security for their networks, he suggested I go for a Security plus and perhaps a CCNA, However, this is only his input.

Thanks again and please keep the suggestions flowing.

fb
Old 13th September 2018
  #20
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FWIW I wasn't suggesting or expecting you'd go get a degree. Just be realistic in how it will probably limit you. Yeah I think a cert or 2 is the way to go and computer/data security is all the rage, so definitely check that out. And hammer your nephew for whatever info you can. g/l
Old 13th September 2018
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill5 View Post
computer/data security is all the rage,
Thanks, you are the 5th IT person who has said this to me in the last week,,,so.....it must be true.

Thanks again.

fb
Old 15th September 2018
  #22
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I've been doing IT for 20 odd years after a career in the technical side of sound and lights etc. I now want back to entertainment tech, it seems a pretty impossible route too.

If you can work for yourself in IT at least you're working for you and making your own rules.

My 2 cents

GK
Old 15th September 2018
  #23
"IT" is a large field. Much like "Print", "Medicine", "Nutrition", "Engineering" or "Sports".

The degree of specialization is high, yet, even becoming an "IT generalist" is an intimidating mountain of work.
I honestly see no reasonable way to truly get into the truly profitable corners without getting a degree in informatics followed by a decade of hard work on serious projects. Be it architecture, development or project management, the DIY garage lab times are long gone.

It isn't one industry either. There's a million of facets from nerdy hippie startups to ice cold accountant work.

The demand is incredibly huge, so much that worthy specialists with serious references can ask for unreasonable payments and pick whatever job they prefer. But without decades of credits and skills, it makes no sense to work as a mercenary or entrepreneur.

Good thing is, it's cheap. No need for risky investments or huge machines, just launch your computer and try to build a website, a piece of software, or maybe just a tax report in excel. My guess is that you'll quickly get a feel for the effort required and reconsider your approach. Because IMHO, the whole point that you're asking "whether you should try" shows a very uncompetitive type of motivation. Before you get an answer, an interested 12 year old already spent the weekend on it and got the job/contract/customer.
Old 16th September 2018
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FabienTDR View Post
My guess is that you'll quickly get a feel for the effort required and reconsider your approach. Because IMHO, the whole point that you're asking "whether you should try" shows a very uncompetitive type of motivation.
This is quite a HUGE and incorrect assumption on your part, but whatever.

Pragmatism is not another word for lazy or unmotivated.

fb
Old 16th September 2018
  #25
don't get me wrong. From my experience, pragmatism starts by taking the initiative. One learns by doing, and certainly not by asking questions in unrelated forums!

Of course there are plenty back-office jobs in the IT sector, be it boring low hanging sys-admin work, form feeding, telephonist, receptionist and so on. But these type of jobs aren't better paid or more secure than in any other industry.

The truly creative, irreplaceable creative IT work today asks for immense experience, ferocity and skill. This is either something for the highly educated or hyperactive "wonder" autodidact. The whole IT world just got way to complex and hierarchical for try and error. Read a book on HTML, Javascript, Java, C++, C# or whatever (maybe even Excel), play around with the tech, and try to do anything meaningful with it. Then read a book about software design patterns and "agile" project management to understand how wrong your intuition was. Again, just to get an idea of the sheer depth of this industry.

Of course it's possible, but it's incredibly hard to fight through the pains of technical failure over and over again, until you get a feel.

With complex tech, things usually start by not working at all, until a pedantic engineer goes threw all the trouble of getting them to run. This isn't something for everybody. That's why I suggest to first try it out.

There's still potential for gold-diggers, the industry just began adopting software in the general sense. Not trying to demotivate, I have Dunning–Kruger effect - Wikipedia in mind. Underestimating the depth of basically any tech sector is not pragmatic!
Old 16th September 2018
  #26
I don't mean that you aren't up to it. I suggest to try things first, before you even think about stepping into this sector. It looks far too easy from distance.
Old 16th September 2018
  #27
Gear Nut
 

get a financial planning certification
everbody, even people with these things called pensions, can use a second set of eyes and ears to help them stay out of trouble as they near the end of the line
everybody needs help with money and retirement planning
and people tend to trust older folks with their money decisions
Old 16th September 2018
  #28
Gear Nut
 

I've been doing "IT" (even the acronym has changed over the decades; anybody remember "DP"?) for about 45 years - all the way from Fortune 5 mainframe OS development to my current MSP company. If IT is your firm goal then I would recommend networking or security.

Software development (does anyone still use that term?) includes the old mainframe languages Cobol and Fortran, etc., variants of C, all the scripting languages, HTML and its progeny, etc. I think this is the most challenging of all IT niches since there are so many OS and hardware platforms, not to mention their various versions.

If you manage to grab a corporate job be prepared to run like crazy, read everything, experiment whenever possible, and be prepared to remember sleep as a long-lost friend!
Old 16th September 2018
  #29
Lives for gear
 
foamboy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by FabienTDR View Post
don't get me wrong. From my experience, pragmatism starts by taking the initiative. One learns by doing, and certainly not by asking questions in unrelated forums!


The truly creative, irreplaceable creative IT work today asks for immense experience, ferocity and skill. This is either something for the highly educated or hyperactive "wonder" autodidact. The whole IT world just got way to complex and hierarchical for try and error. Read a book on HTML, Javascript, Java, C++, C# or whatever (maybe even Excel), play around with the tech, and try to do anything meaningful with it. Then read a book about software design patterns and "agile" project management to understand how wrong your intuition was. Again, just to get an idea of the sheer depth of this industry.
Well, I suppose I should have clarified some things about my endeavor. I actually have had some experience in ALL of the "products" you mentioned. Granted, at the time I pursued this path, it was merely to get a general understanding of how some of this technology works AND it was years ago. I was not interested in pursuing a career in "IT" at that time, I was merely curious about the subject matter. Also, I have been currently studying for the A+ and I have taken some online courses for CISCO and basic networking, so I am FULLY aware of the work and the learning curve. This is precisely why I reached out to folks on this "unrelated forum". I have also inquired about this topic on some "related forums" and I was really just doing an unofficial sociological study, if you will, in order to get some perspective. As I mentioned, I am fully aware of the learning curve and the time investment necessary to just even get a chance at maybe, possibly getting an interview, but I am concerned about my age and overall lack of a traditional resume....so...I was trying to be "pragmatic" about the possible odds of employment as well as whether or not the "corporate" vibe is for me especially in regards to IT.

Don't get me wrong, it's not like I don't have some other options, I am just trying to personally narrow things down for my own satisfaction.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FabienTDR View Post

Of course there are plenty back-office jobs in the IT sector, be it boring low hanging sys-admin work, form feeding, telephonist, receptionist and so on. But these type of jobs aren't better paid or more secure than in any other industry.
And yes, I am aware that other "jobs" can fall under the heading of "IT". But I assumed that when I specifically said "IT" people would get that I wasn't talking about being an accountant for an IT firm.

fb
Old 16th September 2018
  #30
Lives for gear
 
12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by foamboy View Post
Don't get me wrong, it's not like I don't have some other options, I am just trying to personally narrow things down for my own satisfaction.
Just follow your intuition...you don't seem like a dummy, and it seems you've thought it through.
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