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Need help changing career paths...


Grizzy

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So about a year ago I decided to accept a management job at my work. I am a manager at a restaurant and let me tell you.... I hate it. I hate the field in general and tho I love talking to new people and helping motivate others (coworkers, employees, ect ect) I have found myself in a rut and am unhappy.

 

I know my true passion lies in computer and IT. Tho logically I can't expect to make a career out of computer games, tho it is a fun hobby, so therefor I am looking around and am unsure where to turn next.

 

I've been doing some research the past few weeks and was debating on starting my own computer repair company with my little brother, but after doing some researching I am unsure how viable the market is atm.

 

I have basic coding skills and a strong understanding. I have worked in computer repair before and done IT work on the hardware as well as the software side.

 

 

Anyways I am unsure where to start or what direction to go in and am looking for some advice from people who might already have careers in the computer field!! Thank you in advance and any suggestions or advice of any kind will help a great deal!!

 

 

 

- Grizzy

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In my experience with providing local it support/computer repair services is that if you consistently resolve the problem your clients will never look elsewhere. 

 

A gig like that allows you to set your own hours to an extent and that wouldn't require you to quit your current job while building that business. 

 

I personally hate doing repair work though because in most cases you set a rate up front and you get paid that rate regardless of whether the job takes 10 minutes or 20+ hours. (Most will take longer than expected) In a large majority of cases I haven't found it worth my time, and if I charged what I felt my time was actually worth then my clients would be better off getting new pcs. :/

 

I think there's plenty of room in the market for more repair guys though.  If you can extend your business to also cover cellphone repair, tv installations I don't think you'd ever be without work. 

 

We actually do a lot of support for Dental/Orthodontic practices. You could probably walk into 5-6 tell them what you do, and give them your business card and have a solid chance of picking up one or two of them as clients. Unlike individuals they have tons of revenue with unlimited computers problems :P

 

On mobile so sorry for how sporadic my thoughts are coming across. Formatting isn't easy lol

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No that is perfect, lol. My mind feels all over the place because I've been Googling so much I'm not sure what direction to even start with at this point, lol.

 

 

Yeah I could see it being tedious, but I do have a question. What exactly do you do for Dental/Orthopedic practices?

 

And do you have any do or don't advice when it comes to IT and starting up your own business?

 

 

All that being said it's not like I HAVE to do IT. I am just looking for something different that involves my passion which is computer/technology in all realms.

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If you planning to start this type of business look the city before. Mine have a pc repair compagny almost every street.

 

So take a look to this. To dont have too much competition.

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My advice to you stop focusing on the computer games and push your self to learn some useful skill related to software engineering.

 

JavaScript is a relatively easy language to learn and there is a very high demand for NodeJs developers right now. NodeJs is a drug and all the cool kids are doing it, you should do it too.

 

If you find yourself in a rut learning a new skill and can't find the motivation to keep up, push through it. It's called the dip, and every skill has this concept. Once you drive through the dip, it's only smooth sailing from there.

 

Also, don't just stop at one skill. I'm valuable to my company because my company has a lot of different languages and applications which I have experience in each general field. The more useful items you can throw on the tool belt, the more you're worth.

 

You don't need a degree in this field either. I have 2 years work experience and no degree and now I know I can always find a job. The big corporate leaders like Microsoft and apple will even tell you the value of a college degree in software engineering is declining quickly. Schools don't know how to teach software engineering. The good teachers and shit programmers and the good programmers are shit teachers .

 

If learning seems time consuming for you or you don't think you're learning well enough on your own, message me. I used to teach and study a lot on the topic of better education. I can teach you some successful learning techniques that you can apply to habits and note taking to help you learn quicker. My favorite technique comes from my favorite quantum physicist, Richard Feynman who used to the nickname "the explainer" because his learning methods. Taught himself through teaching others.

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I also manage a restaurant. It's hard work but I love it. What I'd say to you is, build your little IT repair service while working your job, when the time is right, you can be a full time IT, if the cards are played right. 

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10 hours ago, Grizzy said:

No that is perfect, lol. My mind feels all over the place because I've been Googling so much I'm not sure what direction to even start with at this point, lol.

 

 

Yeah I could see it being tedious, but I do have a question. What exactly do you do for Dental/Orthopedic practices?

 

And do you have any do or don't advice when it comes to IT and starting up your own business?

 

 

All that being said it's not like I HAVE to do IT. I am just looking for something different that involves my passion which is computer/technology in all realms.

 

Dental/Ortho practices need all kinds of stuff done all the time. New printers installed, new computers and tvs mounted, at least once a month they need software updates done for whatever they use to organize patient info/xrays/etc. They need a nightly backup strategy put into place. They will call about the dumbest things and you can bill them for replacing ink in a printer. Every few years you rack up a TON of hours updating windows. They will use 7 until it is no longer supported by Microsoft then all of them panic to upgrade at once to stay compliant with hippa and pci regulations.

 

Any advice.. not really. Never absolutely guarantee a deadline and never be optimistic in ransomware cases. More often than not your clients are already screwed.

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I'm with JC. I do IT work for a Beauty Salon and Real Estate firm on the side. They are always in need of assistance. Basic things too. The nice part about smaller businesses is they usually do not have any server/network equipment setup. So when the time comes and they want to setup things like an AD domain, a VPN, etc. it is a perfect opportunity to learn new technologies and get paid (obviously be careful of security issues!). Also, I get the chance to manage their websites.

 

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As an FYI, degrees make a very large difference in money for software development. A few key differences are the quality of benefits, salaried as opposed to hourly, slightly more paid vacation as well as sick leave (depending on the company), and I've seen a very significant gap in pay (hourly vs. salaried hourly equivalent).

That being said, education costs money, and starting going into educational debt right now for a degree is not really the safest bet (specifically in the U.S. given present politics surrounding education, which may soon see a interest rate hike at the very least on student loans) unless you are extremely confident in your ability to secure high-enough paying programming jobs.

Other IT work has less of a bar, and is easier to make decent money as a small startup if you're in a good location. There is also always lower paying developer jobs, but they are typically not nearly as rewarding challenge-wise. Very small local startups may or may not pay towards the middle between salaried programmers and the low-end developer jobs (i.e. 45-60K instead of 25-35K).

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I actually have taken a lot of everyone's advice on here. I have recently started learning NodeJ and find myself to be picking it up rather quickly. I'm going to thoroughly learn that then learn C++ which afterwards I will be applying, hopefully successfully, for some Software Engineering jobs in larger cities.

 

In order to educate myself more efficiently, after requesting at work, I am demoting myself back to bartender in a few weeks to give myself more free time. (Very thankful they were okay with that, the understood once I explained my unhappiness and were very understanding)

 

 

 

Also I decided to start a small IT repair company with my friend to get some hands on experience in the mean time so I can at least, to a degree, be working in the field of my choice. I had a pretty clever idea, imo, of an untapped market. I made a small simple website, printed off a bunch of flyers, and actually have my first house call I'm going to this upcoming Monday!

 

Edit: Kinda went old school with the flyers. I went to tons of places old people would be, assisted living homes, local food markets, churches, ect ect... I even went to a Shoney's. Lol.

 

 

If anyone wants to checkout the website I'd love some feedback!!

 

 

 

https://eldercarecomputerrepair.com/

 

 

 

Again tho thanks everyone. This is really the first time in a long time I've been excited to work and I hope my burst of enthusiasm and motivation continues to stay strong until I reach my end goals.

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"Elder Care Computer Repair" -- Sounds like a perfect hell on earth if you ask me :P 

 

That is a great target audience... just a little hard to get along with sometimes.. especially when it comes to tech.  Goodluck on Monday and I hope you enjoy it :D 

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43 minutes ago, jcsnider said:

"Elder Care Computer Repair" -- Sounds like a perfect hell on earth if you ask me :P 

 

That is a great target audience... just a little hard to get along with sometimes.. especially when it comes to tech.  Goodluck on Monday and I hope you enjoy it :D 

 

 

Lol parts of me are feeling that way... The main thing I'm worried about with them is them arguing with my about prices, but them being older I'm trying to go cheaper while at the same time not undermining myself and making me seem unprofessional by having overly cheap prices.

 

 

Regardless I'm hoping my personal skills in the hospitality and sales industry can get me through. I'm unsure how well it will go, I'm just going to stay positive and remember the final goal vs the current struggles of the transition.

 

 

 

Do you know if there is any kind of app designed to make a phone/computer simpler while at the same time not taking away from Personal User Experience?

 

Like Cortana or Siri?

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It sounds like you are getting solid advice on here. From personal experience...

I started in multimedia design and got a degree in that (Associates) in 2002. Quickly found the only companies hiring "multimedia artists" were paying $9/hr and wanted them to be able to program (at the time) "high-end" websites in Flash. Oh how far we've come.

 

I moved around a lot in my 20's and learned what developers of any capacity outside of and within the realm of web design were worth. I made good money at jobs after combining my art skills with programming. I learned some Java at one company which led to learning a little C and so on. Eventually, I was making good money as a dev, but was getting burned out. So I started to do various side projects. Eventually, those became more profitable than my jobs and all I needed was health insurance to keep me happy.


Anyway, older and wiser at 35, I now work a 9-to-5 at a hospital which offers me tons of downtime (to visit the Intersect forums!) and a light work-load week. It pays nearly twice what web devs in this area make because people in rural USA still have no idea what a programmer analyst does let alone how to pay them. Meanwhile, I have just made a little program in PHP that took me literally a week to throw together (the biggest part has been putting data in the database) and they're considering upping my salary considerably to keep the stupid thing up to date. So, there's that. Plus my side jobs are still my passion, and I'm able to make hobby games like A4C which, who knows, could turn something of a profit one day, too.

 

It's all in what's "enough" for you. Knowledge is power. Don't feel obligated to go to school for programming (I didn't) but if you can afford to, do it. Enjoy your work. Learn new languages. Don't worry if hiring managers don't seem to know what they're doing because as famously chronicled on the internet, the guy who invented NodeJS wouldn't have been able to get a job in NodeJS with the way some recruiters seek candidates.

Good luck out there!

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On 7/22/2017 at 2:40 PM, EVOLV said:

It sounds like you are getting solid advice on here. From personal experience...

I started in multimedia design and got a degree in that (Associates) in 2002. Quickly found the only companies hiring "multimedia artists" were paying $9/hr and wanted them to be able to program (at the time) "high-end" websites in Flash. Oh how far we've come.

 

I moved around a lot in my 20's and learned what developers of any capacity outside of and within the realm of web design were worth. I made good money at jobs after combining my art skills with programming. I learned some Java at one company which led to learning a little C and so on. Eventually, I was making good money as a dev, but was getting burned out. So I started to do various side projects. Eventually, those became more profitable than my jobs and all I needed was health insurance to keep me happy.


Anyway, older and wiser at 35, I now work a 9-to-5 at a hospital which offers me tons of downtime (to visit the Intersect forums!) and a light work-load week. It pays nearly twice what web devs in this area make because people in rural USA still have no idea what a programmer analyst does let alone how to pay them. Meanwhile, I have just made a little program in PHP that took me literally a week to throw together (the biggest part has been putting data in the database) and they're considering upping my salary considerably to keep the stupid thing up to date. So, there's that. Plus my side jobs are still my passion, and I'm able to make hobby games like A4C which, who knows, could turn something of a profit one day, too.

 

It's all in what's "enough" for you. Knowledge is power. Don't feel obligated to go to school for programming (I didn't) but if you can afford to, do it. Enjoy your work. Learn new languages. Don't worry if hiring managers don't seem to know what they're doing because as famously chronicled on the internet, the guy who invented NodeJS wouldn't have been able to get a job in NodeJS with the way some recruiters seek candidates.

Good luck out there!

 

 

In order to learn to learn Node I'm having to learn JavaScript. I've been watching online tutorials on EdX in Intro into Computer Science and Intro into JavaScript. 

 

Honestly I feel very overwhelmed. I'm trying to push through it, but I feel like I'm learning so many little things and I'm, half the time, not even sure what I'm learning.

 

Im using a learning technique @Crest suggested to me which is helping a lot. 

 

 

Any any advice from anyone about when you first started learning coding??

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On ‚Äé7‚Äé/‚Äé24‚Äé/‚Äé2017 at 5:35 AM, Grizzy said:

 

Any any advice from anyone about when you first started learning coding??

 

I'm ancient, so I was coding back when JavaScript was a thing geniuses knew how to do. ;) So you learned it to become a genius!

Seriously, tho - I think there's a lot to be said for how programming is now advertised as 'learn it in 6 weeks' or some other thing, and you can go six months and feel like you know nothing. It is not a 6 month process. It is not a 6 year process, even. It's constantly learning and uncovering and breaking stuff. It's putting stuff into an IDE and failing to compile it and wondering why it isn't working for days and days until you follow a different tutorial or guide or book and it works, but you still don't know why the first one didn't work and the second did. And you stare that this code and it means nothing. Sure, you know a few words and have a hunch about what one or two lines is doing, but you don't know why it appears that there are three other lines that also seem to be doing the same thing. So you read another tutorial, and another, and maybe buy a reference book.

Then one day, you look at an old program you couldn't compile before, and you see it. Sticking out, clear as day to your older, wiser self, is the problem. You fix it. It runs.  And all the other stuff around it? You can suddenly read it and understand what most of it means.

 

Anyone 'learning to code' is in the same boat as any of us who've done it for a few years. There's always something else to learn, there's always a neater, faster way to write a program. You'll have a bazillion compiler errors and a bazillion more unstable builds along the way.

 

tl;dr: The first 20 hours of learning are the hardest. Find a mentor -- find one here at this forum, even. Stack Overflow is your friend. Someone on Reddit is working on this thing, which is a pretty neat guide for what to expect along the way. You can do it!

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On 7/25/2017 at 9:42 PM, EVOLV said:

 

I'm ancient, so I was coding back when JavaScript was a thing geniuses knew how to do. ;) So you learned it to become a genius!

Seriously, tho - I think there's a lot to be said for how programming is now advertised as 'learn it in 6 weeks' or some other thing, and you can go six months and feel like you know nothing. It is not a 6 month process. It is not a 6 year process, even. It's constantly learning and uncovering and breaking stuff. It's putting stuff into an IDE and failing to compile it and wondering why it isn't working for days and days until you follow a different tutorial or guide or book and it works, but you still don't know why the first one didn't work and the second did. And you stare that this code and it means nothing. Sure, you know a few words and have a hunch about what one or two lines is doing, but you don't know why it appears that there are three other lines that also seem to be doing the same thing. So you read another tutorial, and another, and maybe buy a reference book.

Then one day, you look at an old program you couldn't compile before, and you see it. Sticking out, clear as day to your older, wiser self, is the problem. You fix it. It runs.  And all the other stuff around it? You can suddenly read it and understand what most of it means.

 

Couldn't have said it any better myself. 

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