On 2/8/07, firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com wrote:
Would you consider taking on an experienced software developer as a
junior ruby developer?
Well theres lots of places that will hire good talent for cheap. But
never sell yourself short.
I have 15 years good software development experience and I have good
software disciplines, instincts and principles, but my main language
experience is java. Will, I just cannot do java any more. If I see
another User.java with getName() and getId() and getAddress() etc I
will go mad.
Well if thats all it takes to push your stress button, I hope I never
you when you are faced with maintaining some of the J2ee stuff: Y’know
write 3 xml files and 4 class files so that you can access a table in
a database. But be forced to write unit tests for them all! Yay! And
worse, sit through a meeting where somebody justifies that this is
actually a good design.
The main problem with being a Java developer is that it consumes your
career and you cannot keep your developer skills up to date. Then it
infects your way of thinking, and you become closed to better
At least I was lucky enough to stay in the Plain Old Java world and
never got any of that EJB rubbish stuck to the heel of my boot.
Ruby got dumped on me when we were between projects, and another
team needed some test automation, so I got into WATIR. To say I had
something of an epiphany is an understatement. Its nice to be able to
be ambitious about my programming projects again.
I am hungry to get stuck into something different, to
learn a new way.
Learn a new way. But do it on your own time. Build up your Ruby
skills while you work with your current job, and on your own time.
Make that career change when you have actual experience with
Ruby/Rails or whatever.
All of my recent roles have been ‘senior’ this or ‘senior’ that, but I
am willing to be ‘junior’ whatever if it means I can do ruby work with
good people and learn something and get the excitement back into my
work. I’m willing to take a pay cut.
Dude, word of advice. Don’t knock $20-30 Grand off your salary for a
‘mentored’ position, when you can drop $200 on some great Ruby
books, join a Ruby U. Group, pay a bit more for some Ruby training
if you can find it, get to any local Ruby Conferences and network,
make some of your own Ruby projects (Rails stuff makes for great
portfolios) and maybe contribute to some Ruby projects that would
need an experienced developer.
If you are lucky, you will be able to apply some of this to your current
job, though not on the critical path. But important projects always need
development and test tools, and QA staff are always more open to new
ways of getting their job done better (like test automation).
For the technology fascists, Rails is the enemy at the gates, the web
technology that threatens to undermine several years of j2ee career
investment. But Test and script automation with WATIR, Selenium
etc. is the enemy within that will open the gates from the inside for
a bloodless coup.
(hmm prosaic… maybe I should get back to work)
When your boss starts to use ActiveRecord scripts to populate the
J2ee DB with sales demo data, he will start to wonder why the project
plan has 5 months assigned for equivalent work. When the testers
start putting their own tool chains together, and commenting that
the output of certain projects isn’t ‘test-friendly’ enough…well you
know the war is won. You are a step away from using Rails where it
is the proper solution, and from creating Rails/Java/JRuby hybrids.