Have you ever taken the time to take a look around at various industries and asked yourself where would many of these industries be today if the computer was never invented? The computer and in actual fact has worked its way into almost every facet of society, the mere fact that this little machine can compute and solve problems in milliseconds as well as store a wealth of information has made this device the undisputed greatest technological invention.
Many of the mundane tasks that would usually have taken days to perform can now all be one at a touch of a button. Cars, airplanes ships and even trains all rely on a myriad of sophisticated computers ranging in shape and size to either control stability, auto pilot, cruise control and to monitor speed and the various systems that make them work.
The computer however is only one portion of the equation. The computer can only function according to a set form of instructions. These instructions are in the form of code or to be more precise programming languages. Currently there are said to be more than 600 different commercial programming languages, however there could hundreds more that have not yet become mainstream. The first mathematical algorithm which many consider to be the actual first instance of any programming language can be traced back to Ada Lovelace. The programming language ADA which was created for the Unites States Department of Defence was named after Lovelace.
So you ask yourself what it takes to become a computer programmer and possibly the creator of a new programming language. If you where to ask any programmer worth their salt then it would be a firm grasp of mathematics and an analytical brain. The ability to not only foresee potential problems but also the ability to formulate a methodology to address the problem. This might sound simple enough and by no means do I intend to sway any potential programmers from their visions but I doubt that even people like Bill Gate and the late Steve Jobs could’ve foreseen the extent of their inventions and innovations on the world. I do however feel that we have reached a threshold with regards to new innovations in the programming sector, the reason for me saying this is that there are programs for programmers to help them write code or to generate the code, therefore are those people considered programmers? That question I think is for another post.
The career path for a computer programmer in many aspects is not a glamorous one but can be very rewarding not only financially but also emotionally. Many hours will be spent in cubicles behind your computer screen writing and rewriting segments of code. The application that you and in many case your team have created will have to be tested and based on the results of these tests the code will be revised, rewritten retested and so and so on until the final product is bug free. With technology constantly evolving the need for programmers will undoubtedly increase.
So if you are not afraid or put off by the fact that the languages that you study and master today might become obsolete in 5 – 10 years and that learning new languages will form an integral part of your overall success, then you have chosen the appropriate career path.
For more career information visit Career Descriptions, a website dedicated to different career choices and career advice.