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Advice for Newcomers


Advice for Newcomers

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Gary Varga
Gary Varga
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Group: General Forum Members
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Hey kid, I hear that you are 12. You have 6 years left of mandatory full time education [UK]. What you need most of all is balance.

Yes, you must do some subjects that aren't your favourite but try hard and you will get the opportunities that are suitable for you later. Don't forget to play but remember to both work and play. Choose subjects that you are good at, enjoy and that will provide you value in your life ahead. You get to decide what "value" means.

The other key point is to understand the difference between goals and aims. Goals are targets you will attempt to achieve whilst aims are where you are currently heading. So you will succeed and fail many goals (mainly succeed, right!) on your way to ever changing aims (or you might be in the tiny minority where they may never change). It is OK to never get to a particular aim and yet other aims may become goals.

You are 12. I get that. Focus on what your goals are (exams? scouts? learning to bake at home?) as you will have many and only consider your aims (Nurse? Musician? DBA?) when you have to decide something (even if only to tell Aunt Agnes what you want to do for a living when you are older) but always bear in mind that for most of us our aims change.

Good luck. Most people will be rooting for you.

Gaz

-- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!
Steph Locke
Steph Locke
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Group: General Forum Members
Points: 1167 Visits: 870
Gary Varga (4/22/2014)
Hey kid, I hear that you are 12. You have 6 years left of mandatory full time education [UK]. What you need most of all is balance.

Yes, you must do some subjects that aren't your favourite but try hard and you will get the opportunities that are suitable for you later. Don't forget to play but remember to both work and play. Choose subjects that you are good at, enjoy and that will provide you value in your life ahead. You get to decide what "value" means.

The other key point is to understand the difference between goals and aims. Goals are targets you will attempt to achieve whilst aims are where you are currently heading. So you will succeed and fail many goals (mainly succeed, right!) on your way to ever changing aims (or you might be in the tiny minority where they may never change). It is OK to never get to a particular aim and yet other aims may become goals.

You are 12. I get that. Focus on what your goals are (exams? scouts? learning to bake at home?) as you will have many and only consider your aims (Nurse? Musician? DBA?) when you have to decide something (even if only to tell Aunt Agnes what you want to do for a living when you are older) but always bear in mind that for most of us our aims change.

Good luck. Most people will be rooting for you.


+1, Great advice
RLilj33
RLilj33
Ten Centuries
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Group: General Forum Members
Points: 1408 Visits: 448
Allow them time to figure it out: help move their interest level from a 5 to a 6, not from a 1 to a 10.

These kids are in middle school. Their interests are still developing and will change rapidly. Their long-term thinking (frontal lobes) haven't yet developed to the point where they can logically think through the long term implications of their choices. This occurs sometime in the late teens to early 20's. If you start with technical descriptions, you lose them - FAST. Instead, focus on what they can see, touch, & feel today. That will put something in their memory banks they can pull out later.

If I were to give a short 10 minute talk to 6/7/8 graders, I would show them - on my computer - a demonstration of a mod being made to Minecraft or something else they are familiar with. I would do this at a very high-level.

Overall take away:
- Show something, don't tell it
- Do it from a 30,000 foot level
- Do it quickly (KISS - keep it simple. stupid)
Eric M Russell
Eric M Russell
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Points: 62670 Visits: 12784
My advice to someone getting started in their career, or looking for a career, is don't let others pigeonhole you into a specific role. Instead, think deeply about who you are, what you love doing, and where you would contribute the most value. It shouldn't be a one time decision that you lock in for the rest of your life, it's something you have to revisit and realign periodically as you acquire new information and experiences. Also, understand what aspects of your career and family really matter and focus on that. Otherwise, you can't advance or balance them.


"The universe is complicated and for the most part beyond your control, but your life is only as complicated as you choose it to be."
mwyss
mwyss
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Points: 1364 Visits: 643

Learn how to comfortably walk up to a stranger and engage them in conversation. It makes everything easier. Interviewing for a job? Check. Dealing with management for the first time? Check. Handling a customer? Check.

I feel fortunate that I worked in retail and learned this skill. I've noticed I get way better results calling/walking-up-to a coworker over simply emailing them, and this skill is why.


Jeff Mlakar
Jeff Mlakar
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I've volunteered to teach young children about computer science. What you say depends largely on what is age appropriate for them. I usually try to communicate a few points:
1) You can do this - anyone can do this, don't be intimidated by what you don't know. You don't need to be a rocket surgeon. I try to empower them to consider they could be capable one day.
2) Learning how to code is a superpower - there is such a wide gap between those who can understand / write good code and everyone else. Unlike trigonometry or some ancient history, there are concrete practical ways understanding technology will help you in life. We are only marching more in this direction - you best know something about it.
3) Mindset - I try to demystify concepts like algorithms, data structures, and code so that it makes sense to them. Ex. for young children I pretend I'm a robot and ask them to direct me to take a shower. They quickly catch on they have to spell out every detail and get into it. It may take a few missteps e.g. i cannot shower with my robot clothes on but they start to develop the problem solving and logical mindset necessary to be successful in our careers.
Jeff Moden
Jeff Moden
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Group: General Forum Members
Points: 509401 Visits: 44288
1. Learn enough about the problem you're trying to solve to actually be able to ask a question about it.
2.. You're not "entitled". Eventually, you have to learn to stop depending on the kindness of strangers and do it yourself.
3. Learn how to get the current date and time. Wink

--Jeff Moden

RBAR is pronounced ree-bar and is a Modenism for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur. -- Red Adair

Helpful Links:
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drew.allen
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Jeff Moden - Tuesday, December 12, 2017 12:41 PM
1. Learn enough about the problem you're trying to solve to actually be able to ask a question about it.
2.. You're not "entitled". Eventually, you have to learn to stop depending on the kindness of strangers and do it yourself.
3. Learn how to get the current date and time. Wink

Hey Alexa/Siri/.... What's the current date and time? BigGrin

Drew


J. Drew Allen
Business Intelligence Analyst
Philadelphia, PA
How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help.
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lptech
lptech
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To anybody remotely interested in IT from high school on: learn how to code. If you can code, you can make something from nothing. No need to even have an old computer laying around, just put it in the cloud for a few dollars a month. My respect for various managers in shops I have worked in over the years increased immensely when I saw their names in comments in code that was still being used years later.
Jeff Moden
Jeff Moden
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Group: General Forum Members
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drew.allen - Tuesday, December 12, 2017 12:44 PM
Jeff Moden - Tuesday, December 12, 2017 12:41 PM
1. Learn enough about the problem you're trying to solve to actually be able to ask a question about it.
2.. You're not "entitled". Eventually, you have to learn to stop depending on the kindness of strangers and do it yourself.
3. Learn how to get the current date and time. Wink

Hey Alexa/Siri/.... What's the current date and time? BigGrin

Drew


Heh... I wouldn't be surprised if it answered, "I'm sorry Dave, I've never had to work with that before". Wink

--Jeff Moden

RBAR is pronounced ree-bar and is a Modenism for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
If you think its expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur. -- Red Adair

Helpful Links:
How to post code problems
How to post performance problems
Forum FAQs
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