Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Prominent Programming Languages

Ladies and gentlemen, I'm glad to elaborate on an interesting yet unclear question: which programming languages will offer the most jobs in the next 5 years or so. In other words: if you are a fresh college graduate or in a turning point of your career, which programming languages should you put an emphasis on in order to maximize your job prospects. I'll answer this question in division to the most prominent fields of programming today:

1. Web sites: PHP - server scripting language i.e scripts which run on the server and respond to the user who browses internet. When you log in to your bank account, you need the bank's server to communicate with you, and this is done by PHP scripts running on the server. Obviously, because most of the web communication requires server scripts, the need for PHP knowledge is expected to be constant.

2. Mobile app: Android - iOS fans, I'm sorry to let you down, but the world is going for the Android side. The reason: Android is free and that's crucial for mobile customers in the developing world, which is most of the humanity. On the other hand, the vast thrust power of Google delivers Android to huge markets, and except of Windows, there is no real opponent to Google's domination. So: Java is the main programming language for Android applications.

3. Windows software - Many of us dislike Windows as an operating system, and for a good reason. But there's no debate that Windows holds the lion share of the market. Most of the development for PC computers is done for Windows. And what is the programming language (and environment)? C# (C Sharp) with the Visual Studio development environment. So what are you waiting for? Start coding now!

Friday, September 18, 2015

IT Professional After 40? Are You Still Alive?

Ladies and Gentlemen, I've been bothered by an issue that I guess has bothered many in the Information Technology industry: the job market after the age of 40 (or so).

It's very common to believe that  IT professionals after 40 are "old merchandise"  and such who get fired  might find it very difficult to find a new job.  The punchline here is that this nuisance deters many young people from getting into an IT career in the first place, so I believe that we need to find a few points why this fear is unbased on reality or at least exaggerated:

1. Statistically, there is no  proven issue of unemployed aging IT professionals  i.e. you can hardly find unemployment statistics that show conclusively that after a certain age, these professionals tend to "evaporate" from the job market.

2. The IT industry started developing massively only in the 1990s.  This means that most IT professionals have been in the business for no more than 20 years.  This can explain the relatively low average age in this industry, as opposed to the belief that the low average age implies an age bias in the field.

3. The IT industry has an unwelcome characteristic: many professional employees move buy their 30s to managerial jobs, leaving behind their technical skills.  On the other hand, most jobs in the market are technical (mostly: software development, database administration, quality assurance, network administration).  the consequence is clear, many employees find themselves (at their 40s and 50s)  out of work and out of relevant technical experience.

4. Many IT fields are suitable for freelance work.  This means that  professionals  may engage in independent  work from  their home offices.  Freelancing is not for everyone, but the very fact that this option is available is highly important.  Professionals who make sure they keep abreast with the technological change over the years and decades, will seldom find themselves out of work.

5. Let's say that there is an age bias in this field.  But complaints about age bias prevail in most careers.  I can't think of many academic careers who don't present some degree of age bias.

Summary - I'd check thoroughly  where the rumor about age bias comes from: I'd look for 40+ unemployed professionals and check their stories out.







Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Are Applications Going to Replace Desktop Software

Ladies and Gentlemen, today I am going to elaborate a bit on a phenomenon that I've come across in recent years: mobile application (in platforms like: iOS or Android) coming straight into our lives, consuming hours of our time daily.

 This is no secret to say that these applications have infiltrated niches that previously were implemented by desktop software. Interesting niches coming into my mind: instant messaging (like: Whatsapp vs. Yahoo Messenger), Games (when have you played games on a PC since the app have come in).

Does PC software stand a chance, or will it diminish to almost nothing compared to the vast ocean of applications? Reasons why applications are going to make PC software disappear:

 1. Applications are mobile and can be used everywhere. Software can be used on computers, which means that you can use them while sitting on the toilets..

 2. Applications are very easy to install and uninstall, usually a single click and 20 seconds of downloading. Software takes a longer time to install and uninstall, usualy not less than 2 minutes.

3. Applications serve a wider spectrum of niches. many niches can't be supported by software, as it's confined to static work station. Software can't give you road routing advice or answer where is the nearest restaurant.

 Reasons why PC software is going to survive:

 1. A PC has a large screen, thus many niches of programs can't really function properly on other devices. Can you write code on a mobile phone? Can you edit a photo on small tablet?

 2. A PC has a superior computation strength, thus many types of software can't even be run on mobile devices. Can you think of playing FIFA games on a cellphone or even a tablet? The players would run slower that your grandmother..

 3. A PC has a comfortble keyboard which enables the user enter inputs much faster than on mobile devices. This gives an advantage to PC software with users who feel more natural with a physical keyboard.

So what is going to happen? The most relaistic scenario is that PC software will gradually diminish to a level where it serves mainly office routines tasks: letters, spreadsheets, software development, graphic design. We need to take into consideration that the mobile devices (especially tablets) will improve tremendously in the future decade, so the technical advantage of the PC is going to be minimized.