Programmer's Mindset

How I Got Started Programming

Ok, so I somehow I came across a post by Joe Stump from Digg and I have found this “chain letter” type post. I want to participate, so here goes. 🙂

How I got started programming:

  1. How old were you when you started programming? I had a real interest (unexplainably) in computers when I was around the age of 7 even though I had only used one a couple of times. My mom dated a guy when I was about 9 whom had a computer and he had King’s Quest 3 (I fell in love with computers).
  2. How did you get started in programming? My mother met her current husband and he had a Tandy Cocoa Color III.
    He taught me BASIC and I used a reference book that I still have
    today. It had every command on a separate page with a description of
    what it did. I went through the book trying most of the commands.
  3. What was your first language? My first language was BASIC, however I also did quite a bit on the TI-85. I create a Space Invaders type game on the TI-85.
  4. What was the first real program you wrote? My first program was a simple quiz game for my youngest sister, it taught her our address, phone number, etc… I also did some db work in a program called “Q&A” for the company my mom worked for “Connery Concrete”.
  5. What languages have you used since you started programming? I started in BASIC, in high school I became a Pascal user, after college I moved to Perl as I became a “web guy”, and have since changed to PHP. I have dabbled in others, but very limited.
  6. What was your first professional programming gig? My first paid job was for Connery Concrete doing some DB work. They did not store their information in a convenient way to make use of it. I also did similar work for a travel company. Before I started they entered all of their customer data into “Q&A” and then hand wrote all of the information onto forms. What a complete waste of time that was.
  7. If there is one thing you learned along the way that you would tell new developers, what would it be? Think outside the box. I can’t tell you how many things I have been able to do because I have thought about the problem and solution a little differently than any of my colleagues. “There is more than one way to skin a cat” is something my mom used to say all the time.
  8. What’s the most fun you’ve ever had programming? I have to say what I am doing now is. I am part of a team that cares where our project is going. Ecommerce is such a competitive field, and selling bowling balls is tricky. Trying to be on the cutting edge and know that you are doing it before the competition can blink is a GREAT feeling. Having a boss that doesn’t just settle on a store bought solution because it may be cheaper makes me feel very appreciated. I have really grown to love the sport and the nuances that go into it. And to be able to spend my day working in this industry is just plain awesome.

I had to follow suit when I saw this post from Joe Stump. I can’t imaging working with such cutting edge technology persona’s as Kevin Rose, and the old crew from the Tech TV era.

I wish I had people to tag. The only other programmer that I knew and respected was the best man in my wedding, but he has pretty much cut me out of his life. 🙁 Long story, but I miss his friendship. The long talks we could have. Working together on programming projects. Makes me sad when I think about it.

Oh well. He knows who he is and if he wants to carry on this type of post, I would be honored.