If you by any chance came across my previous posts or read the about page, you would know by now that I am a newborn programmer. I have been a System administrator for almost 3 years with MNCs when the thought begun to grip inside me that I want to become a programmer. Not python, not ruby, but a Programmer. As in my blog tag line I want to become the other type.

How it all started

When I started to learn programming some 10 months before, I started for fun at first. There were no serious intention to take programming as my career. My first language of choice was PHP since I was pretty much surrounded by PHP programmers, so thought to give it a try. Slowly, bit by bit the desire to become a programmer became serious.

At that time I just started in my second job as a Technical specialist at HCL. So I thought these are just a temporary temptation and would fade off when faced with reality (or so my friends advised). But, it didn’t. After one month into my new job I decided it’s not for me. Not the job, but the SysAdmin altogether. At the time, all my career I yearned for only one thing, to spend more time in office. Not for free snacks or coffee, I yearned for a job that would make myself wanting to work extended hours, I yearned for a job that would make me forget the time or what climate is out there, I yearned for a job that wouldn’t even feel as a job. The two stints proved me otherwise, so I concluded it’s what sysadmin job is all about at the end (I maybe wrong, but hey, it’s what I experienced).

So, I set off to become a programmer before the end of the year. I was ready to leave out all my experiences and skills I gained and I was ready to start from the scratch. I was ready to take a heavy pay cut, since in programming field I am a junior and would be paid as one.

Enter Hacker news

The one good thing (among others) that happened to me while starting to learn programming is discovering Hacker news - A forum where programmers hangout. So, what’s so special about it?

It was the people in the forum that advised me to start learning other languages instead of PHP if I wanted to become a programmer. I never regretted starting new accounts and asking away questions, ofcourse about programming.

For instance, once I asked how do I go about finding a job without taking a big paycut stating my condition. Result? I got 4 job offers, 2 advice emails and 2 mentorship. I was very fortunate I must say. The job now I am in, was from a website a fellow hacker news person recommended. It is because of those people I wanted to get involved in open source. Starting from which languages and resources to pick up down to which IDE to use was one way or another I got from the forum.

I take this moment to wholeheartedly thank each and everyone from the site. You guys one way or another paved the way.

The first month

So how was it the first month? To say the least, It’s AWESOME.

I now know why programmers love what they do. It’s new challenge every-single-day. You wouldn’t go to sleep without learning something new that day, whether it maybe related to job or out of your curiosity you would get to know something and wonder how you have been living without these. It is one of the rapidly changing industry, that a technology that is hot now is outdated in 5 years if not less. You have sheer amount of information ready to dive-in and it’s your call.

Seeing a programmer and being a programmer is lot different. Ofcourse, there will be moments of sheer frustration but I begun to like those. Because, they often end up with a shy smile or a Aha moment, or to the least you’ll end up learning something new. During the beginning days of picking up programming, learning one itself seems too overwhelming. But now, there not goes a day I code in atleast 3 languages. And I am learning new languages at a very rapid pace too.

To conclude, I must say being a programmer really gives me a power. A power to create an impact. A power that I wouldn’t know if at all possible. Me? Impacting the world? Meh.. I was wrong. Totally, absurdly, wrong. It is one of the best decisions I have ever taken in my life. If you are in confusion like I was,

Just Code away!!