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Ben Halpern for CodeNewbie

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Childhood Dreams vs. Tech Reality: How Did You End Up Here?

They say that the things you loved as a kid can give you clues about what you'll love doing as an adult. Did you dream of being an astronaut, a veterinarian, the next Michael Jackson or Britney Spears (depending upon your birth year)? We want to hear how you ended up in the tech industry. Did you stumble into it by accident, or did you always know that tech was where you belonged?

What childhood interests or hobbies led you to where you are today?

Follow the CodeNewbie Org and #codenewbie for more engaging, thought-provoking, and sometimes silly discussions just like this.

Top comments (18)

jmfayard profile image
Jean-Michel (double agent) • Edited

Being quite lazy, especially on the long term, I was dreaming of having a job without too much boring repetitive tasks. I wouldn't say I did that on purpose and consciously, but programming ended up suiting me pretty well.

thedejijoseph profile image

being curious.

as a child, I never really had any expectations or ambitions, but I loved reading and doing new stuff, sometimes, much more than the next guy

I stumbled upon tech cause I always had one question after the other.. and now I'm here

ryencode profile image
Ryan Brown

As soon as there was a computer available to me I started trying to get it to do things it didn't already do and thus a programmer was born. This was about age 7.
I, of course, wanted to make games.
I still want to make games and that is a good chunk of my hobby project time. Though, nothing is publishable without great shame of incompleteness.

joelbonetr profile image
JoelBonetR πŸ₯‡

+1 here, though I got my hands on programming a bit later, during the adolescence. The first dream was to make games but I felt in love with web development and I continued in that path since then with some incursions into IoT.

My first and only approach to videogames was a web version of snake, but someday... Who knows? πŸ˜‚

ldnovaes profile image
Leandro Duarte

Actually, I have always been the "tinkerer" in my house. I loved to open up my toys and many of them were thrown away because I messed with them too much. I got a reputation as a mischievous boy in the family and even stopped getting electronic toys as a result. I grew up as "the computer wizard," but my family didn't have much vision about how important that was. So, due to lack of support, I deviated from my IT focus and became a military man. First in the Army (here in Brazil) and then as a Military Police Officer (in SΓ£o Paulo). Life as a soldier is full of adrenaline and exciting, but nothing beats sitting in front of a screen sipping a coffee and knowing that the chances of coming back home are greater. I have the feeling that I should have taken this path, even without family support.

erinao profile image
Erin A Olinick

I really enjoyed this share! And hearing about your passion for tinkering and how it led you to pursue a career in the military. Do you regret not pursuing IT earlier, or do you feel that your time in the military was valuable and necessary for your personal and professional growth?

ldnovaes profile image
Leandro Duarte

Would you believe me if I told you that, while I regret not having studied IT earlier, I also consider my time in the Army valuable? I know it might seem contradictory, but the truth is that this experience opened my eyes to important life issues. I started seeing life in a different way and realized its value, as well as the power we have to determine the course of events. Thanks to my time in the Army, I understood that I am capable of achieving everything I desire as long as I persist and never give up. If I hadn't joined the institution, it might have taken me longer to realize that. That's why I say my time in the Army was crucial.

Thread Thread
erinao profile image
Erin A Olinick

Yes! I really resonate with your integrated perspective, where you appreciate the value of each experience, even if it doesn't seem immediately relevant or meaningful: and of course, it is meaningful, as we come to learn...everything is inextricably intertwined and that much richer thanks to the experiences that preceded it...and those that are still to come.

frikishaan profile image
Ishaan Sheikh • Edited

As millions of other Indian kids I also want to be a cricketer and represent my country at the highest level. However, my family didn't supported me as it has a very low probability of success (only 11 will selected amoung millions).
But fortunately, I found something that I love doing (coding) during highschool and it has a high probability of success too.

__masashi__ profile image

I also wanted to get into sports(was pretty good at it), so I joined a club that trained us for state selection. I had to leave it later due to medical issues and lack of practice during the pandemic.
I fell in love with coding and continued with it.

nlxdodge profile image

I started of school playing to much games, eventually I had to make a choice really early on in life which job I would go for (because I failed to learn lots of things when I was younger which resulted in a lower school). But I was to young to think well about it.

I though well, playing games is fun. How about making games?
I started a school for game-development, but found out that making a stable career in game-development is somewhat difficult.

My second internship I did at a PHP-development company and though them I learned a lot of things about websites and databases and bigger software as a whole.

Then I did a bachelor (but to be honest I didn't learn that much new things, I just did it for the certificate in the end).

Now I work in X big bank helping to write the new big micro service thing that is going to relieve stress from the current infrastructure.

atinypixel profile image
Aziz Kaukawala

An Electrical Engineering dropout, who worked as a Front Desk Biller & then as a Photo Editor ended up to be a self-taught Software Developer (A dream finally came true which I dreamt since I was in 4th Standard).

andrewbrown profile image
Andrew Brown πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦

It's the family trade

louiseann93 profile image
Lou Willoughby • Edited

I grew up very technical minded due to my dad but more in terms of gadgets, I have always been quick at finding out how something works and to this day when I see my dad we chat about his latest gadget or app etc.
I’m thankful for this because I have a very analytical mind, I love a spreadsheet and data but it was only due to my chronic illness I took a desk job and came out of hospitality. My ex started learning python and I was intrigued but didn’t think it’s where I’d end up.
I started working with sql and managing the company data and my boss asked if I was interested in learning code.. I took the opportunity and started as a trainee, I’m now 2 1/2 years in and I’ve never looked back (except on the really hard days when you reminisce how easy it was to stack shelves πŸ˜‚).
Being 30 though I’ve always felt late to the party when my colleagues say how they started coding at 10 with some crazy stories but better late than never πŸ˜…

2kabhishek profile image
Abhishek Keshri

I'm pretty sure a lot of people here would be the same as me:

It started with video games for me, and that's what I decided to do professionally

Although I have built a few tiny games and do enjoy the process, writing servers and web apps is where I found my calling, maybe someday I'll get back to game dev again... you never know :)

mattyice profile image
Matt McNeive

I constantly changed my "dream job" as a kid but programming was never one of them. In fact, I didn't think about it much until I took AP Computer Science my senior year of high school, and I only took that class because I liked the teacher. But I enjoyed it much more than anything else I studied and here I am now 5 years later with a CS degree.

paulwade profile image
Paul Wade

I was a security guard in 2005. I didn't like the future I was headed towards pursuing my career in law enforcement. I didn't want to be poor, work nights, weekends, etc., and miss time with my family. Also, just so you know what a terribly petty human I am, I also really didn't like being looked down upon as stupid, as I saw it in my mind.

In late 2005, I taught myself .NET programming in VB.NET (Don't worry, I moved to C# quickly). By 2008, I was working for Fortune 500 companies after getting some footholds in small companies, mainly consulting, where I was expected to learn technologies and successfully complete projects.

Quickly, I learned that half of this job is working with other people. It's not sitting at a desk in front of a monitor 24/7. You have to get out there and ask questions to build good software. You have to talk to other teams and work together.

I've always preferred to put on headphones and veg at my desk. For the last 20 years, though, no one really knows what I've been doing. How do you tell your friends and family about something they don't understand? I've never been great at selling myself.

In short, after doing this for 25 years, I've learned a few things. Don't make coding your identity. No one else cares or will understand what solving those complex problems meant to you. They won't know or be able to care about how good it felt to create an insanely clean, well-architected system. Make sure you find some hobbies outside of coding.

riddhiman007 profile image
Riddhiman007 • Edited

I will become a doctor but programming is my passion. I am a student and feel programming a very interesting thing