Career choice please help!!!

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by Foxhounder, Jan 23, 2013.

Jan 23, 2013
  1. Foxhounder
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    Hello people, given the nature of this fourm I have come across many people here that have some sort of knowledge of computers and programming, bring them together and you get computer science.

    I have had an interest in it for a long time now, worked on a couple of pokemon hacks(gbc, gba a little of ds)I'm also intersted in art. Drawings and digital animation. My fiance likes art too, and computers kinda, but she's a photographer. Anyways...I need some help from those who are knowledgable in the field or are even in it.

    I want to do computer science, specifically either software development or web design...or both. But here's the problem. I do not want to be away from family all the time. I read that you can get from 40-60 hours with these fields, sometimes longer if you count over time. I want to go do the job and just come home to spend time with my fiance and our would be child. I don't want to have to work from 6 AM up to 6 or 9 PM...I want at least 6-8 hours a day, not including obvious weekends.

    Basically, I'm wodering if there is a way to get a job in these fields and still have time for family and to even travel and just have fun. Is this possible with these career fields?
     
  2. Rydian

    Member Rydian Resident Furvertâ„¢

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  3. ct_bolt

    Member ct_bolt Creator

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    Yeah sure it's simple... make an great app or website and get rich. Then you'll have all the free time you want. lol just joking about that (although it does happen, Facebook would be one example)... so far for me though I'm almost to 80 credits in Computer Science (it's been a very long journey). I cannot tell you a simple yes or no as to weather you'll be able to spend time with your family, but I can assure you that in the end it will pay off. :moogle:

    There will be many many many frustrating times though if you go into computer programming (my major). So in order to succeed you must be very patient & level headed, as mentioned above by Rydian.
     
  4. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Software design and web design are usually considered reasonably separate fields but they are being smashed back together rather hard at this point (CGI, general web application development, web development frameworks and databases conspiring to make that the case), though I would still not hire a web developer with the expectation they program me a new computer program and would probably not hire a software programmer to make me a sparkly new website so might want to pick a path to head down. To that end I would say if you can make a living not touching the pointy end of web development and just sit there in image editors and dreamweaver you are doing better than almost all others (heading into the future I reckon even the straight PHP+SQL or the Microsoft equivalent might be a fairly saturated pond).

    9-5 web/software developers exist.... they are not terribly well regarded though. We live in a 24 hour world and if your sales website is down the costings can be in the tens of thousands per hour let alone lasting damage to reputation, this is usually solved by an "on call" system. Software development outside web development is more amenable to this but more prone to "crunch" time style things where you spend lots of time doing things at various points (shortly before releases and "oh damn massive bug was discovered" being the big two). Likewise no good software developer does not keep their skills up to date and while on the job training is very common and often part of employment contracts it will not happen solely through that and you will be spending your own time here.

    That said 20 hour weeks are also possible depending upon who you are (read set up as self employed/consultant)- those 20 hours can be all at once though and from time to time you will find yourself sitting there with only 4 hours of sleep a night for a week straight. You usually want to be very good at something specific (and vendors will quite happily drain your bank balance of several thousand for a bit of paper- the trick would be to figure out what bits of paper are potentially worth the hassle) but especially for web development you can set up and see if you can make it work with local businesses.

    Shift work is increasingly an option and some nicer companies offer very flexible hours- programming is a somewhat creative endeavour and companies can appreciate that and plan accordingly. That said you will probably be called upon to be in the same room as others at some point.

    It also depends upon where you are- outside parts of California, western Washington state, New York, Texas and a few other choice places you are not faced with the greatest variety in where you work and what you do.

    With a few choice noun replacements you could say the same about pretty much any profession though (even ones that do not fix or build things); if you want guaranteed 9 to 5 you get to do basic office work, factory/warehouse work or retail.

    Travelling- an odd one. On the one hand you are facing the legendarily low holidays that the USA has which prevents proper travelling (if I am not somewhere for more than two weeks I might as well not have bothered) but on the other plenty of people manage to save a bit of cash, quit a job (or maybe take a sabbatical- some companies even require you take one occasionally) and do a bit of travelling before rejoining the workforce (the better advice would probably be to get the new job, quit and start the next one once you get back). Provided the bit of travelling does not extend into the years range this is not such a bad model, bonus is many companies have next to no internal promotion and the only way to move up is to get a new job so it plays quite well into that.

    For what it is worth however; any fool can sit on the couch for 12 hours a day but if you only have a little bit of time and can spend it doing something special then that is far better.
     
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  5. Foxhounder
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    Thanks for all the replies. I came across this where some guy is a programmer who is in my position, where he states he would not put his job above his child or wife..the problem with this career(computer science)is that yeah the pay is good but in exchange all you get in a buttload of work and hardly any time to do what you want, like spend time with family. FAST, your suggestions were good like working a set period of time and after accumilating enough money, quit and go on vacation and start again. But that also seems a bit too tricky.

    Its hard choosing a good career that can deliver a good amount of money while also having the choice to spend quality time with people you love or just to yourself. You either get a career where you're almost free to have fun at it while getting payed albeit less than 50, 000 a year or you get a long daunting job that is nothing but work work work and get 60-80.000 a year without the quality time. Sadly this is the way things are, I don't see an inbetween unless you earn rnough and have enough experience where you can do your own thing and still get payed. Which takes years.

    I know its not about the money but I want to live a nice quality life, barely any debt and a nice house(nothing fancy)with a wife and child. Unfortunately it seems you have to take the long grueling path to get that.
     
  6. ct_bolt

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    Yeah personally my plan ever since I started in programming has been to make a game that people love (including myself of course) get some money from it (what a foolish notion); Which then I would either try to live freely for a while or invest into a team and make something new (game, app, cartoon, not really sure).

    However, this is extrememly difficult to do... so I'll probably end up working for some corporation at a boring job for a while, save up money and go from there.
     
  7. Foxhounder
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    Game Development is the worst programming type of job there is. You don't get payed that much and you barely have any time to yourself. Working countless overtime hours just to finish Barbie Princess Xfinity.

    Game Development is not a career that you should waste your life away, I had that idea once but Computer Science is more balenced because you get the skills to make games and do even more than that and get payed a lot better. Software Development I hear is more fun than Game Development. On average for game development the salary is 40 thousand. That's not a lot. Especially since you're working your ass off 24/7 to develop some piss poor game that MIGHT sale.
     
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  8. ct_bolt

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    LOL, sooo true... the only way I would ever develop a game would be if I had everything done the exact way I wanted it (which is what I've been doing in my spare time).

    Yeah, I was a teen (over 10 years ago, lol) when I originally thought of going into Game Development, now I just do it on my own in my spare time. With my major in college set as Computer Science. So I still learn all the skills but can go on to do software apps, pc & other electronic repair, etc. as well.

    As far as Software Development being more fun... it's really only more fun because it can have a real world practical use. I wouldn't necessarily say it's more fun though, it just depends what you like to do. ;)

    Anyways.... Best of luck to ya in what ever you decide to do in life! Just remember to enjoy what ever you do. :moogle:
     
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