Category: Career

A Traditional Approach to an IT Career

I have just read Career Development for Geeks [1] by Erik de Castro Lopo [2]. It makes some interesting points about a traditional approach to an IT career. The path I followed for most of my career (after I had a few years experience) was to work as a contractor and happily leave jobs without […]


Getting People into IT

Pia writes about the difficulty in getting young women and young people in general into the computer industry [1]. While I agree that having more women in the computer industry would be a good thing, I have difficulty believing some of the claims that Pia makes. For example the claim that “[girls] are more career […]


Who Can Contribute to Free Software

A common misconception is that only programmers can contribute to free software. The first significant reference I recall to this was in a presentation by Pia Waugh [1] where she mentioned that she felt that the way words such as “coder” and “hacker” are used in the community as synonyms for “contributor” are denigrating to […]


Some Good and Bad Ideas for Recruiting

Eweek has an interesting article about Microsoft’s latest bad hiring idea [1] (their previous one was hiring a model to try and give the idea that IT work is cool [2]). They have created a web site to try and get people who consider themselves to be geniuses to work for them. One significant […]


Writing a CV for a Contract Position

There is a lot of career advice related to writing CVs in books and floating around the net. Unfortunately almost all of it is tailored to permanent positions. Some advice that I have seen includes researching the company you are applying for and emphasising your experience in related fields. This probably makes some sense if […]


Does Having Fewer Rules Inspire Hard Work?

I was recently talking to a client about the lack of guidelines for acceptable personal use of office resources in his company. He rejected the suggestion that he provide any real rules or guidelines (apart from some old rules that most employees were not aware of and of which there was no procedure to remind […]


The Start of My Computer Career

When I was about 11 years old I decided that I wanted a career related to computers. My first computer was the TEC-1 single-board Z80 based kit computer from Talking Electronics magazine (see the photo below). I think that I built this when I was 10. The computer is 16cm high and 25cm wide. The […]

Career School

IT Recruiting Agencies – Advice for Contract Workers

I read an interesting post on Advogato about IT recruiting agencies (along with an interesting preface about medical treatment for broken ribs). Their report closely mirrored my experience in many ways. Here are what I consider to be the main points for a job applicant dealing with recruiters: Ask more than you believe that you […]


Microsoft Hires University Drop-Out for Recruiting Campaign reports that MS has hired former Miss Australia Erin McNaught to sex up the computer industry’s geeky image and describes her as a “University Drop-Out” (later in the article it’s revealed that she deferred her course so she might end up completing it). Hiring her is supposed to demonstrate that IT careers have “gone […]


Living in Hotels

I received a private email in response to my post about getting work in another country regarding hotel prices in London. The person who sent me the message had considered London but ended up moving to Japan instead partly due to living expenses (although Japan seems unlikely to be much cheaper). The first issue concerns […]