So, you want to be a Programmer

On May 14, 2012

So you want to be a programmer

It's almost a decade now since i began my journey in the beautiful field of programming. Like most of the programmers i started out with C and then moved on to learn  C++, Java, .NET, PHP, Perl. In the past two years i have used J2ME, Brew,  Android and now iOS.

I am good in some of these languages(C being my all time favorite), while i barely scratched the surface of most of them.

While pursuing your degree, when you decide to choose a subject in which you want to specialize and make a career, you will find yourself overwhelmed with plenty of options.

There is networking, database administration, software engineering, software testing, system analysis, programming(obviously). There are plenty of people who spend a lot of time in deciding what they are going to choose.

But, to a programmer the decision is a no-brainer. You either love programming instantly or you never do. That's how i see it. 

There is a certain joy that you feel when you run your first program on a computer and it displays the desired output. For most of us it's usually the "Hello World" text displayed on the monitor.

The possibilities start arising immediately after that. What if i could do this? What if i could do that? It would be so cool to make such a program!!

That's the excitement you feel when you write your first program and if you don't feel it then, perhaps, programming is not for you.

Sure i have seen plenty of examples where some non-programmers become programmers to make their own stuff, so that they don't have to depend on others. 

Some of them succeed, some of them don't. But are these people really, truly programmers?

Making something work is fine. But, creating something astounding that never existed before. Now, that's what a real programmer does.

You are either a good programmer or a genius programmer. That's it. These are the only two kinds of programmer that exist. There is no place for a bad programmer.

A good programmer(which i hope i am) uses his programming skills to create great stuff using all the means he could.
A genius programmer(which i intend to become some day) creates the means himself.

A good programmer uses someone else's game engine to create a great game.
A genius programmer creates his own game engine and then builds his game upon it.

Good programming is about being someone who makes a good game that people enjoy playing.
Genius programming is about being a John Carmack who makes a Doom game that simply blows away the mind.

The kind of programmer you become will depend mainly upon what goals you want to achieve and how much efforts are you willing to put to achieve that goal.

Creating good stuff will require a lot of effort. Creating astonishing stuff will require an astonishing amount of effort. 

So, what type of programmer do you want to be?

Image Source: CEThompson

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