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Old dog - new tricks?

Anon Visitore

Joined: Dec 23, 2010
Posts: 3
Hello all,

I'm hoping this is a good place to ask this question, you come highly recommended. <really ;-) />

Can you start a career in Java programming by self-study?

I'm 52 years old, I've been in web development for about 16 years now.
Tons of HTML/CSS, PHP (procedural) / MySQL. I've worked on some large teams.
Currently I'm doing JavaScript and UI work for HP.

I was introduced to Java a couple of years ago when the company I worked for decided to migrate to ATG ecom and they began to move the PHP devs to Java.
They brought in a trainer from N-Tier training and I was loving it, but the company never let off the pressure so we could really study, we had the first major release looming and they set up this training. I enjoyed learning about design patterns and TDD. But,.. to make a long story short, "living to work" got old after 8 months didn't jive with my family life and I bailed. I haven't done any Java since.

I really liked the little bit of Java I got to experience and if I had my way I'd continue to teach myself and try to get a job doing it.
My OOP skills are kind of weak, but I know I can fix that. At least we're writing JavaScript using Moo4q so we're using a decent OO approach.

So, can a 52 year old web developer migrate to a Java Career?


Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 63870

Sure, it's possible.

Landing a job might be a challenge -- it's tough even for us boomers who aren't breaking into new areas.

The good news is that your JavaScript experience is worth much and should become more and more valuable as JavaScript becomes even more important. At least here in Austin, Java devos are a dime a dozen, while good JavaScript devos (and I put the emphasis on good) are more difficult to find. And demand is increasing.

I'm certainly not saying not to add Java to your arsenal -- someone who has both Java and JavaScript experience has a leg up.

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