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Originally Posted by jakeroberts View Post
Hello, lets hear about your pet peeve. Also, I don't know about being an independant developer, I would rather be a contributor to a nice project.
I'm leaving out my pet peeve because I don't need an argument right now. My week has already been disruptive. There was a small hint in my original response.

Building a career in this business pretty much demands the expense and time of formal training. If for no other reason, because employers like to know you have at least covered the formal methodologies and have a basic understanding of the underpinnings of how systems really work. There is a core of knowledge that is taught in both short term college programs and 5 year computer science degrees. With this core, a talented individual can go on to build most applications you see today. Of course it should be mentioned that a talented person without formal training can be just as productive.

I don't know what the percentages are, but most of the computer science talent is working on corporate applications. Both the people and applications are not usually known to the general public. Also note that much of that talent are also working on applications that run on a Microsoft OS, and having to use said OS during for development.

It is likely easier to get your foot in the door of that 'cool' company if your name is recognized. A common way to do that is to work on a popular open source project, or create your own applications. A few key issues here is that you should be interested in the application, show that you are reliable and work well with others, and the application should be using much of the technology that company uses.

Given what everyone has said, I hope you realize it is likely going to take you years to "be a contributor to a nice project". If you already have some the required skills, then perhaps that will get you there a little sooner.
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