Author Topic: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature  (Read 655 times)

I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2018, 02:06:38 pm »
OK I'll do exactly what you suggest.   I'll pick something I have absolutely no experience in and see what I can do with it.   I'll let everyone know what particular thing I chose.

I'll retool in whatever it is and then attempt to get work using that particular skill.   If I can do it and actually get work, that means anyone can do the same thing.

I wouldn't say it proves anyone can do it, but it would help with the defeatist thinking that a lot of older software engineers have.

I wasn't joking about this being book material.  Barbara Ehrenreich wrote https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nickel_and_Dimed about trying to get a minimum wage job as a high-credentialed professional.  To her amazement she could not get hired.  Employers thought she wasn't a good fit or that she wouldn't stick around.
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The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #31 on: March 06, 2018, 03:38:49 pm »
OK I'll do exactly what you suggest.   I'll pick something I have absolutely no experience in and see what I can do with it.   I'll let everyone know what particular thing I chose.

I'll retool in whatever it is and then attempt to get work using that particular skill.   If I can do it and actually get work, that means anyone can do the same thing.

Excellent. Thanks. Yeah, that's precisely what I was driving at.

I think this is one hell of a great experiment!
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #32 on: March 06, 2018, 03:50:42 pm »
Looking at ID's list, I think I have isolated it to 3 items, none of which I have any experience in.    Java, Python and Big Data.   I am going to do a little more research before picking the final one.  Sort of leaning toward Big Data even though it is lower on the list.   Always wanted to dig into it but never had the time.

The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #33 on: March 06, 2018, 03:58:06 pm »
If you're intending to apply for rookie/trainee/retread jobs...I would think a more tool-focused specialty (eg, Java or Python) would be more marketable than a big data/data warehouse target. But maybe I'm wrong. It's just my thought...
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #34 on: March 06, 2018, 04:21:36 pm »
Big data generally means Hadoop.  So I searched Dice for the three posted within the last 10 days, no specific location and here are the results.  I used "Developer" to restrict results otherwise each returned far more.

hadoop developer - 136
python developer - 253
java developer - 1976

So it appears Java is the top choice even though Java disgusts me - primarily because Oracle owns it and I hate that company. I need to think it over before choosing.   I also want to look at the courses available on Udemy first.

unix

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #35 on: March 06, 2018, 05:10:46 pm »
Linux is having an impact in the federal contracting area. Nothing really new here. Has been that way for 15 years, but now more than ever.

I need to get my rear end certified.
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I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #36 on: March 06, 2018, 07:16:54 pm »

So it appears Java is the top choice even though Java disgusts me - primarily because Oracle owns it and I hate that company. I need to think it over before choosing.   I also want to look at the courses available on Udemy first.

A couple of good things I know about Java besides the fact that it's been the top-ranked language on the Tiobe Index forever.

There are really good Java books:

* Thinking in Java  (4th Ed) by Bruce Eckel
* Design Patterns for Dummies by the ever-prolific Steve Holzner.  All the examples are in Java and it's the first book which really made the design patterns comprehensible to me and how and why I might use them.

If you are going to interview for a job, you'll have to know all about the design patterns as well as everything in the 1,400+ page Eckel book. 

Also, Android mobile uses Java, but mobile app development does not sound like a skill target. 

The bad thing about Java is that because it's so widely used there is going to be stiff competition. And who knows how many Oracle certified Java SE 8 Programmers are out there?

I'm a little dubious about learning language skills outside of a domain area.   In that sense, Gorn is right when he advised me "You worked in a cleared government contract job. That's a distinct business niche..."  My clearance is long gone.  The best I can do now is put "clearable"  on my resume.   But that's life.

I think Gorn's challenge to go job hunting "with a scrubbed resume that doesn't reflect [your] current or recent billable work" is a bit unrealistic.  We all have a history and if we are going to go talking to hiring managers there needs to be a common understanding.   My 2 cents of course.

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The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #37 on: March 06, 2018, 07:32:30 pm »
I think Gorn's challenge to go job hunting "with a scrubbed resume that doesn't reflect [your] current or recent billable work" is a bit unrealistic.  We all have a history and if we are going to go talking to hiring managers there needs to be a common understanding.   My 2 cents of course.

You misunderstood what I was asking Pxsant. I asked him to consider using a scrubbed resume when he tests his method of crash-learning plus hammering interviews to find something available.

It's to establish a baseline to see if what he's stating actually works to help someone land a job when they don't have the specific OTJ experience. 

It's the equivalent for his method of fasting overnight in order to take a blood glucose test in order to get a proper blood reading.

Not something you'd do in a real life economic survival situation.

Quote
If you are going to interview for a job, you'll have to know all about the design patterns as well as everything in the 1,400+ page Eckel book.

Also, Android mobile uses Java, but mobile app development does not sound like a skill target.

The bad thing about Java is that because it's so widely used there is going to be stiff competition. And who knows how many Oracle certified Java SE 8 Programmers are out there?

I don't agree with the first sentence. I say it really just depends. Some shops want to see sample code. Others may tech you out on standardized knowledge as you state. It really depends on the sophistication of the place and how much their own staffs who interview you know. I had that a lot when I contracted in C++ - some places are formal, others just want to hear you talk about your interesting project.

I agree with your last sentence. Pxsant seems to be targeting the market leader for programming languages, so Java >>  Python. Yet Java is the most generic language on the planet at this point, similar to knowing "just C" in the 1990s. I'd personally go for a language where I could establish some personal uniqueness in my approach.

In my guts I don't think that "cold learning" Java will allow you to land a position, but let Pxsant prove me wrong.

I believe your technical specialization is a bit of targeted marketing. The more generic you are, the more you SEEM to be able to fit more roles, yet the more of a face in the crowd you are.

That's true of cars - dating and selecting a mate - picking reading material - picking a movie to watch on Netflix. You would never pick generic when you needed or wanted specific.

Same with employers.

When I did SW contracting my best successes were in fairly tightly defined language+platform+project type domains.  I wasn't everything to everyone. I was something very specific to the rare but extant places that needed that combination of interests.

Example of a successful schtick/niche that lasted me for about 10 years from 93 to about 2005: C++ language; Windows OS with Borland and then Visual Studio tools as platform; Windows application rewrites as the project type.

I believe that Pxsant should figure out a similar triad of qualities for best success, not just figure that learning Java expertly will open doors.

In fact, DAMN, I feel like I just created a new law of programming job physics in this post. Hurray me!  :laugh: >:D
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I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #38 on: March 06, 2018, 07:59:01 pm »

You misunderstood what I was asking Pxsant. I asked him to consider using a scrubbed resume when he tests his method of crash-learning plus hammering interviews to find something available.

It's to establish a baseline to see if what he's stating actually works to help someone land a job when they don't have the specific OTJ experience. 


I'm confused about what Pxsant is trying to do.  I thought he was going to actually try and get hired somewhere.   If not, what's the success criteria for the  experiment?  Get a phone interview?  If he's going to be technical at some point he'll have to pass a technical interview.


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The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #39 on: March 06, 2018, 09:21:17 pm »
I'm referencing Pxsant's crash course idea. Where he gives a prescription for those currently out of the tech job game.

The first post you see from this link:

http://www.computerconsultantsforum.com/forum/discussions/specific-tactics-for-landing-technical-jobs-as-a-mature/msg96359/#msg96359

I'm asking him to go to those interviews with a resume that omits his current work and strengths. To test his concept for retooling from ground zero.
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #40 on: March 07, 2018, 02:41:35 am »
OK here it is.  I am skipping Java.  I am actually going with two - Hadoop and Python.   I ramp up on both over the next 3 months and see what I can do with job applications.

I am working so I don't actually need a job right now but if I get a good offer either long term or remote, I'll l might take it.   I'll post about progress periodically. 

pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #41 on: March 07, 2018, 03:17:10 am »
In looking at courses on Udemy on Python and Hadoop, I see some interesting stats.

One of the courses I had previously looked at is from a guy named Frank Kane.  He has 84 courses on Udemy.   Just the one I looked at on Python has 53986 students.  Even if you figure a low average price of $15, Frank grossed more than $809K on just this one course.

I just looked at one of Frank's courses on Hadoop and it has 34621 students grossing around $520K.

I don't know what Udemy's cut is but Frank has apparently made millions by having video courses on Udemy.

Guys and gals, what the hell are we doing??   If you want the ultimate work from home gig, work up some courses on whatever you can think of and post them on Udemy.

I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #42 on: March 07, 2018, 05:22:09 am »
In looking at courses on Udemy on Python and Hadoop, I see some interesting stats.

One of the courses I had previously looked at is from a guy named Frank Kane.  He has 84 courses on Udemy.   Just the one I looked at on Python has 53986 students.  Even if you figure a low average price of $15, Frank grossed more than $809K on just this one course.

I just looked at one of Frank's courses on Hadoop and it has 34621 students grossing around $520K.

I don't know what Udemy's cut is but Frank has apparently made millions by having video courses on Udemy.

Guys and gals, what the hell are we doing??   If you want the ultimate work from home gig, work up some courses on whatever you can think of and post them on Udemy.
Psxant, I know this is armchair and potentially useless advice but I just don't see how online learning absent anything else is going to be successful in getting an interview.

A somewhat better approach IMO would be to skip the the online learning and get a Hadoop with Python book and work through the exercises.  Then build something that solves an interesting problem and try somehow to get people to use it.  Then reference the app in a Google-findable web site.   I think the app should be hosted on AWS as a cloud app.  I think this would demonstrate proof to an employer than you can use Hadoop to solve their problem.

I've sat through 100s of hours of computer science coursework  instruction.  Probably a 1,000+ hours.  I honestly believe it's not as good as books and whatever you can find online in the event you have a question, like Stack Exchange or wherever you can find a Hadoop user community. 

What we need to decide here is what's the best use of one's time.  Is it to get a credential or is it to create a portfolio of accomplishments?  I'm pretty sure Dick Bolles would favor the latter approach.
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #43 on: March 07, 2018, 05:34:55 am »
ID I agree with you on one part.    You really do need to build something which has some practical application so you can show it during an interview.   I would host whatever it is myself instead of using AWS.

I do appreciate your advice.  However, I disagree with you on the book vs video courses part to some extent.   Video courses would be faster and easier to do than reading a book on the subject.   I am limited in the time I can spend on this and I have set a personal deadline on being fully functional on the subject within 90 days.  The only way I can make that timeline work is through the video courses.    It is just too tedious reading a book and trying to apply that in practice.  The video courses do take you through the practical part of building something aside from the theory.  Reference books will come later.

I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #44 on: March 07, 2018, 05:45:34 am »
ID I agree with you on one part.    You really do need to build something which has some practical application so you can show it during an interview.   I would host whatever it is myself instead of using AWS.

I do appreciate your advice.  However, I disagree with you on the book vs video courses part to some extent.   Video courses would be faster and easier to do than reading a book on the subject.   I am limited in the time I can spend on this and I have set a personal deadline on being fully functional on the subject within 90 days.  The only way I can make that timeline work is through the video courses.    It is just too tedious reading a book and trying to apply that in practice.  The video courses do take you through the practical part of building something aside from the theory.  Reference books will come later.

What I like about books, and I'm not talking about a reference book, but a tutorial, is that you can copy the example, run it and then dissect the code to see how it works.  For me, that involves a lot of concentrating, looking up things, making little changes to see how the output is affected.   Listening is way too passive, I think.

But maybe it's a difference in learning styles.  Same thing when I took Algebra II in 10th grade.  I always felt I wasn't getting it in class, that a lot was going over my head.  It wasn't until I got home and figured it out for myself that I got it.   I loved the teacher, though.  She was an older woman who really had a passion for teaching. Those were the days when smart women were tracked into secondary school teaching.  I'm sure one reason schools are so shitty these days is because all the smart women are now in industry.

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