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Old 03-20-2016, 01:53 PM   #151
daveT
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

To maybe press the point a bit more. I was once watched a presenter who built web-scrapers for a living, apparently getting paid very well. She admitted to not knowing HTML when she started and admitted she still struggled with it. She couldn't explain many of the features of the scrapers she was writing. She didn't know how to follow links using the scraper, and admitted that she was stuck on how to do that.

She had been building scrapers for 9 months. There are many many factors at play, and many of those factors aren't represented by ability and aren't reflected by pay, but I suppose I can take this one odd point and extend it to all programmers: it must be super easy to find work with no programming background (she had zero), and it must be super easy to find high-paying work, told to figure it out, and be given a pass for not being able to, right?
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Old 03-20-2016, 02:15 PM   #152
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

So, blogging. Everyone who applies to a bootcamp does it.

Do they build their own blogging platform for it or just use Wordpress?

How much of the preparatory material do they tend to link to? Would it be considered gauche to do so?

Would blogging about it increase, decrease, or do nothing to your odds of getting accepted if it was traceable to your name?

I feel like I read a lot of blogs from applicants, but not necessarily any from people who go routes other than - 3 interviews and then decision. Would an alt route blog be interesting?

Seems the successful people who blog are super vague and never go into details, and the people who are rejected detail things very well. Coincidence?
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Old 03-20-2016, 02:59 PM   #153
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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hardly relevant. Your claim is that programmers are somehow equivalent to manual skilled laborers in pay and lifestyle, and that is categorically false.
But that's irrelevant for the purposes of discussing whether it's worth moving from one field to another. The point is that it takes nearly as much work to get the same kind of pay. In the US, in some specific areas, software companies are extremely profitable and/or attract tons of investments that they are able to pay lots of money to attract extremely high caliber talent, which of course has downstream effects for those who can produce at a simliar level, appear to have potential to do so in the future or even just look the part or contribute to the "culture" that attracts those people or whatever. But if this doesn't apply to you and you're not willing to go to those places and play the game, it's irrelevant. It's irrelevant for most people. This game is not open to anyone, is only available in a few places in the world, you're competing with people from everywhere in the world and it doesn't exist in Japan as far as I know. So again, I don't care if you're technically correct or not - what relevance does this have for Lonely Box's situation? It's like talking about Zuckerberg as a billionaire softare engineer.

Also don't forget that an average person going into a field that requires significant amounts of study and some degree of aptitude projects to be below-average because there's some survivorship bias. Not everyone makes it.

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My personal issues aren't relevant. There are many factors that play into my situation, but none of them have to do with my abilities, or lack of. I'm working on those issues and slowly learning: 90% deals with me, and about 10% deals with the environment, and I think the 10% is merely aberration, thus can mostly be ignored.
These may or may not be your personal issues but jobs like that exist. You leaving and moving on doesn't mean the job isn't around in some form. And you didn't happen to leave the only low-paying programming job in the world - there are tons of low-paying programming jobs. Jobs at attractive startups and jobs at top tech firms are the exceptions. The vast majority of programming jobs don't pay well - try getting a programming job at a non-software company in a field where no one gets paid well outside of the major metro areas. The guy mentioned that he's moving overseas and mentioned Japan, which rules out most high-paying programming jobs.

Btw I feel like we had a version of this exact argument where I was arguing a version of your side and you were arguing a version of my side.

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Then you clearly are anti-bootcamp, and apparently find these stories pure myths:

http://blog.ilovecoding.org/6-figure-developer-job/

http://adzerk.com/blog/2015/11/getti...-as-you-think/

I could pull up another 100 articles if I was in the mood, but to say the least, there are dozens of articles about people starting to code, and in 6 months, hitting the $70k and more milestone.
Credentials outside of programming matter hugely in terms whether you're able to land those kinds of jobs. One of them has substantial experience in the industry, some even as a developer and has a MIS degree from a good school and the other graduated from UNC Chapel-Hill which is a top state school. It's absurd to argue that they just started to code and got a great job. Again, I'm not arguing that you can't make 70K as a junior developer something remotely like that - that's entirely silly. I'm just saying that projecting that as an baseline outcome for someone considering leaving a lucrative career behind is insanely irresponsible given that we don't know if he has anything remotely close to strong aptitude for programming or any kind of credential that will attract attention.

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Once again, totally irrelevant. A mansion on the lake in Cleveland, Ohio is about $150k. A 5 bedroom mansion with large yard and two patios in Mississippi can be rented for $400 / month. This is a reflection of how hard money is to come by in those areas, and a reflection of the average cost of living, and shouldn't be compared to cities like LA.

This disparate pay is not isolated to programming, but includes other high paying fields such as law, accounting, medicine, etc
But for software, it's not even that much about cost of living - Seattle has a fairly reasonable cost of living but has a thriving software industry that pays engineers very well. Tokyo has a very high cost of living but does not really have any kind of software industry. The equivalent for other industries would be like if some cities have no jobs for lawyers and doctors but only paralegals and nurses. I guess finance is the same way - high finance jobs are disproportionately concentrated in a few international finance hubs. Unfortunately, if you look at the whole world, not that many places have enough software companies to significantly impact average programmer salary. And maybe like in the 80K to 150K range, you're looking at cost-of-living adjustments but much beyond that, it's more that money attracts talent than same talent is just given more money on account of being in the right place.
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Old 03-20-2016, 03:19 PM   #154
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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Like all things, this is situational and prone to error. I always said it before and I'll maintain my opinion: some of the dumbest people I worked with were the highest paid people on the site, and trust me, I'm not being a h8er or anything. Like, they were truly dumb as bricks, careless in their work, and had to be taught to use a measuring tape. There is so much more to life and earning some 6fig, much dealing with luck, especially in fields where 6fig is considered rare and mostly unattainable.
Well in some fields, seniority matters and soft skills always matter. But I would assume the best carpenters have their own businesses for the most part and work on custom projects for rich people with high standards. Carpentry is not a skill that scales that well so I don't expect top people to work on construction sites building one house after another. Either way I think our industry is way too humble and we're far too harsh on one another in the same profession. What we do ranges from kind of difficult to insanely difficult and if you go into the complex bits, it's as complex and as out of reach for most people as the specialized areas within medicine, law, etc. For how hard it is, it doesn't pay especially well because the barriers to entry are extremely low.
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Old 03-20-2016, 03:20 PM   #155
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

Y'all are making me a little depressed, and I actually have a job
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Old 03-20-2016, 03:54 PM   #156
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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Y'all are making me a little depressed, and I actually have a job
Well all 5 of the ppl that did my bootcamp in the initial cohort got jobs. 2 of them I met. One guy is making 65k at progressive ins. He has some B's degree from a weak state school and was working at Target prior.

The other guy is making 56k at some software company. Not sure if he had any college but he was the GM of a bar prior.
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Old 03-20-2016, 04:50 PM   #157
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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These may or may not be your personal issues but jobs like that exist. You leaving and moving on doesn't mean the job isn't around in some form. And you didn't happen to leave the only low-paying programming job in the world - there are tons of low-paying programming jobs.
I'm sorry, what programming job did I have? I wasn't a programmer at my last job(s) in LA. I simply was not supplied the tools to do my job properly, so I built them. At no point was I ever considered a programmer and at no point was I expected to program. I was expected to manage a large part of a company from end-to-end, which included logistics, customer service, sales, inventory, product listing, etc. The size of the work wasn't the intent on the outset, as my section was about 1% of the company and grew to 75% of the company.

The tools that were available were not up to the tasks at hand. The software that is commonly available for ecommerce companies are pure trash, and despite using the #2 product in the space, we struggled to get our work done. I merely built out a database and that was it. One of my coworkers built tools in Excel and VBA, and we combined some of our ideas to create other items. We only did the work because we cared about doing a good job, and had nothing to do with our "job titles." Our names were on our work, and we simply did what we did out of pure pride.

The job before that, I was assigned the position "marketing," but once again, I was not supplied the tools to do it, so I built out my own programs to do analysis and other work. My job description was simply "do what yo have to do and figure this out." Just because I did programming doesn't mean I was a programmer. I had to wear 10 different hats, and the programming stuff was a small part of my work, and certainly was not my position.

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Jobs at attractive startups and jobs at top tech firms are the exceptions. The vast majority of programming jobs don't pay well - try getting a programming job at a non-software company in a field where no one gets paid well outside of the major metro areas. The guy mentioned that he's moving overseas and mentioned Japan, which rules out most high-paying programming jobs.
The issues are far more complex that this. Reality is that many companies, especially small businesses, need programmers and analysts, but they are too technophobic and prone to sticker-shock to understand why this stuff is needed (plus GOTO comment about the software being pure trash).

Companies that buy and sell hard products work under the same debts and redlines that 90% of startups do, but they end up having to be more defensive because so many software products are being aggressively sold, and the vast majority of them would obviously bring a company to its knees. There aren't many VCs who focus on hard products, though there are handful who are doing very well in this space.

There is much more complexity: if a company hires one developer and that developer leaves, they are kind of screwed, so it is in their best interest to be conservative, not only with hiring one in the first place, but mitigating the risk by paying far below market share.

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Credentials outside of programming matter hugely in terms whether you're able to land those kinds of jobs. One of them has substantial experience in the industry, some even as a developer and has a MIS degree from a good school and the other graduated from UNC Chapel-Hill which is a top state school. It's absurd to argue that they just started to code and got a great job. Again, I'm not arguing that you can't make 70K as a junior developer something remotely like that - that's entirely silly. I'm just saying that projecting that as an baseline outcome for someone considering leaving a lucrative career behind is insanely irresponsible given that we don't know if he has anything remotely close to strong aptitude for programming or any kind of credential that will attract attention.
There's quite a few other blog posts about getting a job with zero, like zero at all, programming background and landed stuff after 6 months. Literally going from first seeing a command line to landing a job. Most of this revolves around RoR, which I think is why so many bootcamps focus on that stack. I'm not really in the mood to research the point.

If it matters any, I once interviewed a girl with a masters from UC Berkeley, straight A student with an impressive internship program. She also build out an inventory system in Java, but couldn't land a job after a year of trying. She was also able to type 95 wpm with zero errors. So, credentials, etc...

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Well in some fields, seniority matters and soft skills always matter. But I would assume the best carpenters have their own businesses for the most part and work on custom projects for rich people with high standards. Carpentry is not a skill that scales that well so I don't expect top people to work on construction sites building one house after another.
http://www.indeed.com/salary?q1=carpenter&l1=

Average carpenter salaries for job postings nationwide are 37% lower than average salaries for all job postings nationwide.

http://www.indeed.com/salary?q1=programmer&l1=&tm=1

Average programmer salaries for job postings nationwide are 29% higher than average salaries for all job postings nationwide.

I'm not even sure where the notion of being a business owner is even relevant to anything and I'm not sure why so many conversation devolve into this, as "owning your own business" surely should never be called "average."

Ok fine... the "average" carpenter is on his own, working a constant stream of 1099s, must supply his own tools, etc. Imagine a world where each programmer must have a pickup truck, must buy his or her own Mac Pros, chairs, desks, etc, and must bring his or her own coffee and water to work. Of course, tack on the unpaid er... "vacation." Oh right, and have your programmers work from 6 am to 10pm, and don't even think about letting them take a break or offer a free breakfast burrito, because that **** is weak. Finally, be sure to rip them a new ******* for releasing a buggy line of code, which results in immediate dismissal, but only after redoing the work for free.

Just ask the plumber how much he earns a year next time you have one come over. Ask him how hard it would be for him to earn 70k a year and I'm sure he'll ask if he can have whatever you are smoking.

I did custom work for rich people, installing sunken tubs with graphite tiles and gold-plated accents, toilets with tampon pullers, membrane sinks, and outdoor brick fish tanks, just to name a few of the higher-end stuff I've installed that each cost more than 3 months of my pay. I earned nowhere near 100k.
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Old 03-20-2016, 04:54 PM   #158
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

1) Regarding the claims that anyone who goes 0 experience to hero at a great company has something more to them; nope. I have a non-CS degree from a state school, no prior tech experience, am over 30, and was working in a restaurant for several years prior to AA. 2.5 months after graduation I had contract work, and 2 months after that I started at a large tech company that is one of the most desired places to work at a high salary.

I do have soft skills and am probably insanely lucky as well, but there it is. (If it makes you feel any better, I'm pretty sure I run crazy bad in romance.)

2) While it's initially disconcerting to think about how everyone is "learning to code" now, it's overblown. As someone said, being capable of writing a for loop is entirely different from being capable of learning or having the desire to learn anything more difficult.

3) Certainly are similarities to the poker boom, with the key difference being your salary and future are more secure if you can get that first job. Even if things go south, at least you have legit skills that can be leveraged in other ways.
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Old 03-20-2016, 05:00 PM   #159
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

Oh and Noodle, I would not bother blogging unless you really want to. Do it as a way of ingraining the day's material if you think it will help, but doing more exercises may be a better use of time. I can't imagine any company, or anyone at all really, caring about reading any of the hundreds of "my bootcamp experience, day by day" blogs.

Making your own portfolio site though is a different story if you spend time making it look impressive.
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Old 03-20-2016, 05:13 PM   #160
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

Coding is extremely tedious. I have been doing it for a couple of months now and just today started trying to do the css for a navbar and even that is turning into a pain in the ass. Doing something at the most basic level is simple, once you start saying, well let's make it work like this it becomes more complicated. If you are telling me that large percentages of the population are capable of doing this I will laugh in your face. Even the talk about online poker is largely over generalized, games tough because markets closed off, gov taxes and 2b in penalties went up, competition went down, poker rooms are doing nothing about stopping the obvious botting rings, poker rooms allow for too much bum hunting. even with all of that, if they had legal poker in the USA games would still be great.

and the biggest difference is that while there are tons of "learn to code" videos... you have to actually do it all yourself as opposed to Pokertracker having ribbons that tell you what to do on every street. showing you exactly where the fish is at the table, sitting you on tables with the fish etc.
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Old 03-20-2016, 05:28 PM   #161
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

if anything global demand will increase as developing countries become wealthier. Syrian refugees left their country by the millions but everyone took their cell phone. cell phone ownership globally is going to be bordering on 100% pretty soon.
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Old 03-20-2016, 05:35 PM   #162
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

All the more reason to read that article about cutting cruft in the other thread
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Old 03-20-2016, 06:08 PM   #163
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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There's quite a few other blog posts about getting a job with zero, like zero at all, programming background and landed stuff after 6 months.
Like if you're good at math, saying "zero programming background" is totally misleading. A math major from MIT and a high school dropout who failed Algebra I may both have "zero programming background" but they are not really at the same place. If you're good at even high school math, you're way ahead of someone who's not quantitative/mathematical at all. Random English majors from top schools with no background in economics or finance get top finance jobs that pay 150K+ out of college all the time. Framing that as "you can land a good finance job without any finance background" would be extremely misleading. It's not even just credentials but the basic mathematical skills the credentials imply.

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If it matters any, I once interviewed a girl with a masters from UC Berkeley, straight A student with an impressive internship program. She also build out an inventory system in Java, but couldn't land a job after a year of trying. She was also able to type 95 wpm with zero errors. So, credentials, etc...
Again, everything matters and you're either presenting her in a misleading way or she's not very good at presenting herself or may just not be cut out for this stuff. No one is saying credentials are everything. There are homeless Harvard grads and barely literate people who didn't finish grade school that are self-made millionaires.

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I'm not even sure where the notion of being a business owner is even relevant to anything and I'm not sure why so many conversation devolve into this, as "owning your own business" surely should never be called "average."
I didn't say anything about average carpenters. FWIW, LonelyBox is a ultrasonic testing technician who makes 90K so I'm not sure what your point is here. Maybe it's hard to make 90K in skilled trade so everyone else should try to become a programmer instead but he's already there. I'm just trying to counteract this idea that programming is an easy way to make money or that it's some kind of glamorous occupation that's way above skilled trade.
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Old 03-20-2016, 06:27 PM   #164
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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1) Regarding the claims that anyone who goes 0 experience to hero at a great company has something more to them; nope. I have a non-CS degree from a state school, no prior tech experience, am over 30, and was working in a restaurant for several years prior to AA. 2.5 months after graduation I had contract work, and 2 months after that I started at a large tech company that is one of the most desired places to work at a high salary.
In terms of supply and demand for entry-level labor, I think 2014-2015 was the peak and it's not looking as good right now and it's unrealistic to think that it will ever be quite as easy in the future. Also "non-CS degree from a state school" sounds to me like you're trying to understate your credentials - a STEM degree from a top state school would massively boost your chances and any kind of degree from a good school or a STEM degree from any decent school would matter. And it's not even just that they will help because you look better. They are indicative of your basic abilities. Like if you were good at math at any point in your life it will help because basic mathematical aptitude is predictive of how good you are going to be in programming and how well you will do on your interviews and so on.

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2) While it's initially disconcerting to think about how everyone is "learning to code" now, it's overblown. As someone said, being capable of writing a for loop is entirely different from being capable of learning or having the desire to learn anything more difficult.
True but that's basically my exact point here - average people are not exceptional. Literally right here you are saying you have something that most people do have. Whether we call this aptitude or gumption or whatever, it's odd to me that you're basically saying that you have something special in a post where you were trying to say you're an average joe with nothing special.
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Old 03-20-2016, 06:30 PM   #165
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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Software Engineering but if you study electrical engineering at any kind of respectable place, you'd learn enough to get a job as a programmer whereas the reverse is not true. The flip-side is that there are probably like 100 times as many jobs in software engineering as opposed to electrical engineering. And the gap will continue to widen as there's less and less need for specialized hardware and hardware design is more software-driven than ever before. For example, Deep Blue that beat Kasparov was a combination of specialized hardware and software written specifically for that hardware. AlphaGo that beat Lee Sedol is basically software that ran on commodity hardware.
But you also need electricity for almost anything, isn't electricity the energy of the future?

My UT mentor told me to get a mechanical engineering degree, but I don't have much interest in that field.
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Old 03-20-2016, 06:50 PM   #166
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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But you also need electricity for almost anything, isn't electricity the energy of the future?
But by and large we already know how to do it and you don't need EEs to solve problems that we already know how to solve - we just need commoditized parts and technicians. To the extent that we have new problems to solve in regards to electricity, we're looking at fields like energy/power engineering (generation), chemical/materials engineering (battery tech) and maybe engineering physics and related fields for new approaches. EE is in practice mostly about circuits, signal processing, controllers and that kind of stuff. These things are important but we just don't need very many people to work on them.

I don't think EE is a wrong choice necessarily because you get to look beneath some of the abstractions we take for granted but in practice if you study EE, you will probably go on to work in software.
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Old 03-20-2016, 08:32 PM   #167
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

I really appreciate the discussion between candybar, B.Jones, daveT etc. as it provides some much needed perspective on the industry.

Even with this recent discussion about programming careers not being as lucrative/available as they once were (or as is commonly believed) I assume (hope) that it's still one of the best paths open to a 30 y/o ex-poker player looking to get a start in the real world. I've spent the past year exploring numerous career options only to discover that most of them will not be accommodating of someone in my position with a measly BA degree and a fairly blank resume. It's a tough pill to swallow but I knew the sacrifices I was making and would like to think the money I saved helps to make up for it.

My current plan is to start with a 2-year diploma as the market for bootcamp grads appears to be saturated. Fingers crossed that I'll have the aptitude and good fortune to make something of it as many of you clearly have.
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Old 03-20-2016, 08:38 PM   #168
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

I think this zero to job idea is misleading. Everyone in my bootcamp already had spent significant time learning to program before coming. In my case it was nearly a year.
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Old 03-20-2016, 08:59 PM   #169
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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But you also need electricity for almost anything, isn't electricity the energy of the future?

My UT mentor told me to get a mechanical engineering degree, but I don't have much interest in that field.
i have a mechanical engineering degree and worked in that field for 2 years. almost nothing that I learned in school applied to my work. and what did, was merely incidental.
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Old 03-20-2016, 09:32 PM   #170
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

I have a degree in EE and although I never worked as one, I did intern as one for 2 years, and similarly, what I used from my education was sparse/fractured. But I think the education is mostly to give a groundwork. I was able to read articles and books about the fields I was interning in and pick it up easily because I knew the math and the engineering basics. Think of your education as more like... an example of how to learn a specific engineering field, rather than a complete how-to-be-an-engineer course.
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Old 03-20-2016, 09:40 PM   #171
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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I think this zero to job idea is misleading. Everyone in my bootcamp already had spent significant time learning to program before coming. In my case it was nearly a year.
It'd be awesome if people posted portfolios or gave us a better idea of what they have learned and are capable of. From App Academy's FAQ:

These are final projects:

http://www.appacademy.io/faq/curriculum-projects
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Old 03-20-2016, 09:43 PM   #172
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

The reality is that when people say coding boot camps are a bubble is that it is actually a CS degree that is the bubble (unless the government intervenes and makes bootcamps illegal).

If bootcamps lower standards and the students are not learning anything that is easily fixed by independent testing/certification tests to weed out those who did not learn anything in their bootcamp.

Essentially, the CS model has no definitive advantage over the bootcamp/self study model besides tradition.

It is strange that IBM or whatever have not started recruiting directly from high schools.
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:26 PM   #173
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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I assume (hope) that it's still one of the best paths open to a 30 y/o ex-poker player looking to get a start in the real world.
I think that's fair.

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My current plan is to start with a 2-year diploma as the market for bootcamp grads appears to be saturated.
By a 2-year diploma, do you mean a master's?
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:44 PM   #174
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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By a 2-year diploma, do you mean a master's?
I assumed an associates degree
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:44 PM   #175
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Re: Online Bootcamp or Physical Classroom?

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Originally Posted by Shaomai888 View Post
The reality is that when people say coding boot camps are a bubble is that it is actually a CS degree that is the bubble (unless the government intervenes and makes bootcamps illegal).

If bootcamps lower standards and the students are not learning anything that is easily fixed by independent testing/certification tests to weed out those who did not learn anything in their bootcamp.

Essentially, the CS model has no definitive advantage over the bootcamp/self study model besides tradition.

It is strange that IBM or whatever have not started recruiting directly from high schools.
Top employers seem to have moved in the exact opposite direction at least in terms of their technical screens. Like 15 years ago, most technical interviews were more about understanding of specific technologies, general problem solving skills and maybe some coding and object oriented design, engineering principles, etc. Nowadays it seems much more about CS and algorithms and data structures and understanding of distributed systems and networking and operating systems. And nearly uniformly so at least among the top tech firms. These are the exact things that they teach in CS courses.

Now these jobs are few and far between and there are lots of other good jobs but also don't forget that most graduates from top bootcamps usually have a bachelor's degree and many of them from good schools in related disciplines. I don't think bootcamps are replacing colleges in any realistic sense right now - it's serving basically as a post-bac continuing education for those who already have college degrees. So in that sense, the CS model's major advantage, for the vast majority of people, is that it's faster and cheaper. We're very far away from the point where high school kids are choosing programming bootcamps over college en masse.
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