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Future career advice

 
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Hi All, I am a software engineer with around 5 years of experience on the IBM i platform (formally called IBM iSeries / AS400) working on development and maintenance of RPG and SQL applications. Though I have somehow managed to get good opportunities even though the technologies I work on are relatively old, I would like to learn additional skills now to make my career more future proof.

The real challenge is identifying which new tech/language I should try to study. A few ideas I have in mind are Javascript related stuff like AngularJS, NodeJS or HTML5 etc. But I am not sure if this is a good enough choice as there seem to be a lot of people working on this stuff and it might be a bit too late to start learning this.

Another thing that comes to my mind is data science/ Hadoop (data science or analystics). I know that this is the latest buzz word but whatever research I have done so far indicates that this is a huge topic with lot of things to cover, understand and learn (R, MapReduce, Pig, Hive , even Java bla bla bla) . This sounds bit intimidating as my job is relatively challenging.

What attracts me a bit more are stuff like Ruby on rails, python etc which seem to be a bit less complicated compared to something like data science and seem to be single topics rather than an array of things. Another thing i would like to do and makes my mouth water is learn something that I can use along with my iSeries skills and help to modernize applications which run on it. But I am not sure which technology would be best suited for this. Any suggestions are welcome!!!
 
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JavaScript is a big topic too. It's never too late to learn something, but there is more competition in this space.

Do you have any opportunities t your current job to gain experience in anything new? For example, maybe you could script something in Python.
 
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Many technologies can make use of HTML/xHTML. Even JavaScript languages work with HTML. Please note that I did not say HTML5.
You probably don't need to know everything about HTML/xHTML but knowing the basics is helpful.

If your interests lie with artificial intelligence than you may want to look into Python. You can experiment with Python, RasberryPI and AI projects for probably less than $50.
RasberryPI can also help lead you towards Internet of Things (IoT) and industry which appears to be growing at a very rapid rate.
Python can also be useful with data sciences.

Just a few thoughts.
 
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Pete Letkeman wrote:Many technologies can make use of HTML/xHTML. Even JavaScript languages work with HTML. Please note that I did not say HTML5.


Not sure I understand that. Anyone working on the web and not using HTML5 is woefully behind the times.

 
Pete Letkeman
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Bear Bibeault wrote:Not sure I understand that. Anyone working on the web and not using HTML5 is woefully behind the times.


The way that I understand it is, HTML5 is based on xHTML/HTML and everything which can be done in xHTML/HTML is supported in HTML5.
As such I would say that if you now the basics of HTML/xHTML then you know the basics of HTML5. However there are elements in HTML5 which are not supported by HTML/xHTML.
It may be beneficial to know the building blocks of HTML/xHTML before moving onto HTML5.

While I agree that HTML5 is the standard and that most people should not be using only HTML/xHTML still, I do suspect that there are some environments or libraries which do not support HTML5 yet.
 
sinatra roger
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IoT sounded pretty much interesting.But there are too many articles on the internet that go against this as a career.

Javascript seemed a good option but there is too much competition in this field as mentioned and too many people involved.  Definitely, don't want to end up a small fish in a big pond.

Please do not think I am cribbing about everything out there :P .

Data analytics/data science seems to be the way to go. Can someone suggest a route (combination of skills) that would be simplest to learn and useful enough to apply in data science projects (for the purpose of self study) so that the learning process is started.







 
sinatra roger
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Also, highlighting again, one more point which I mentioned previously - are there any technologies which a developer with an iSeries background would find most suitable?
 
Pete Letkeman
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sinatra roger wrote:working on development and maintenance of RPG and SQL applications


You may be able to get some extra miles out of SQL as many systems use a variant of SQL to some degree.

If you choose to you could become certified Oracle PL/SQL, MySQL or MS SQL.
Or possibly you could look into administration of SQL systems/servers and systems like MongoDB.

 
Greenhorn
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I believe that if you are interested in something you can easily grasp and learn it. Others are correct, it is never too late to study and discover something new.
 
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