Friday, August 17, 2012

The Software World & Me

As of writing these lines, I am 34 years and a half old. This means that, for more than a half of my life, I have been doing software (and systems) programming, development and architecture.

I remember, when I was a kid, a company named Commodore and another company named ATARI came up with gaming consoles. I don’t remember how old I was; can’t be more than 7-8 years old. My cousin (R.I.P) had one, and I just knew that I must obtain one for myself. Alas, there’s very little that a 7-8 years old megalomaniac kid can do to obtain technological wonders that, back then, were very, very expensive. My dear father, witnessing my immense desire for one of those toys, got me one.

A short while after entering the wonderful world of computing, I started thinking to myself – how are these things really done? I mean, what brings a small box-like metal object, lying on my floor, display moving objects on my television and respond to my commands?

I was determined to know what on earth is it that makes this metal box react. From there on, it didn’t take much time to understand what a computer program is.

I dragged my father to a nearby computers store (back then, they weren’t aplenty), and I got a wonderful book, explaining how to program in a programming language called BASIC. My first computer program wrote “Hello world” on the screen, an endless number of times.

10 years later, it became a profession (well, I did learn to program stuff slightly more useful than printing “Hello world” repeatedly). 17-18 years later, it still is.

Over the years, I learned (by myself; I’m not a huge fan of studying in courses, classes or other arranged mediums) to program using many programming languages: Assembler, PL/I, COBOL, REXX, C, C++, Python, ADA and – most recently (that is, 12 years ago) – Java.

Professionally, I fulfilled in a large variety of roles, ranging from system programming for mainframes (oh, those good old days) to functioning as a hands-on technical architect (“hands-on” meaning that my role usually involved more than just sitting on my ass writing documents and drawing diagrams).

I have worked in the public sector; the private sector; the financial sector; the telecommunications sector; the consumer products sector; the e-commerce sector; and others.

So, I did learn a thing or two over the years. Therefore, software development being such a prominent part of my life, I decided to, occasionally, share some of my knowledge & experience with others. Being a rather busy individual, I can’t predict how often I’ll be writing about software development here… but we’ll see.

For now, though…

View Isaac Shabtay's profile on LinkedIn
profile for Isaac at Stack Overflow, Q&A for professional and enthusiast programmers