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Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
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Mizuki1130 Offline
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Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
Recently I saw a post about someone working as an entry level python developer by teaching themself programming. I was wondering if anyone here is in the software engineering field and knew how difficult it would be to get a software engineering job if you have a degree other than CS (physics) but have taken CS courses through data structures and are familiar with a few languages (java, C#, html and CSS (I know those aren't technically languages but whatever)).
01-24-2020 01:25 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
You can definitely work a physics degree in the tech industry. Programmers have massive math envy, use that to your advantage. You will want to have a few projects under your belt to help things along, though. Try to find some easy contracting stuff, contribute to a few open source projects, etc. Once you get one solid thing on your resume you're good forever.
01-24-2020 02:01 PM
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Mizuki1130 Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 02:01 PM)kel Wrote:  You can definitely work a physics degree in the tech industry. Programmers have massive math envy, use that to your advantage. You will want to have a few projects under your belt to help things along, though. Try to find some easy contracting stuff, contribute to a few open source projects, etc. Once you get one solid thing on your resume you're good forever.

You mean from like github? I really want to get out of the US right after I graduate to maybe oslo somewhere in that area. They have lots of software engineering jobs over there and I speak Norwegian
01-24-2020 02:08 PM
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AntoniusofEfa Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
No one will pay as well for tech roles as US companies. EU software engineers are poor people compared to their US counterparts. Make cash in the US and spend it elsewhere.
01-24-2020 02:11 PM
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Mizuki1130 Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 02:11 PM)AntoniusofEfa Wrote:  No one will pay as well for tech roles as US companies. EU software engineers are poor people compared to their US counterparts. Make cash in the US and spend it elsewhere.

Even in Norway? Also isn't it harder to get into US companies without a degree in CS due to HR and other bs? I'm hoping my idea of how hard it would be to work in software engineering here is exaggerated
01-24-2020 02:19 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 02:08 PM)Mizuki1130 Wrote:  You mean from like github? I really want to get out of the US right after I graduate to maybe oslo somewhere in that area. They have lots of software engineering jobs over there and I speak Norwegian

I would agree with AntoniusofEfa above. Try to find a remote job with a US company. You can get a Silicon Valley salary and spend it in a lower cost-of-living place (not Oslo).

And yes, some contributions on Github would go a long way. But also you need some projects on your resume. That could be an open source project, but it'd have to be more than some bugfixes to other people's projects. So, do your best to find some kind of position, even if it's low paying. You don't need to stay long, in the tech industry jumping jobs every few months isn't that unusual, especially earlier in your career. Find something online, maybe, build a few people some shopping carts or something like that. Use that to get in to a position - probably junior, sacrifice salary if need be - with a company - probably just some local startup or something - and then use that position for your next. Once you've got one or two real positions on your resume (and you have the skills for the interviews) you can jump into a higher paid position with either a startup or established company.
01-24-2020 02:22 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 02:19 PM)Mizuki1130 Wrote:  Even in Norway? Also isn't it harder to get into US companies without a degree in CS due to HR and other bs? I'm hoping my idea of how hard it would be to work in software engineering here is exaggerated

Norway has a very high cost of living as I understand it, I don't know what the salaries are like there, but having worked on four continents, I concur that there's nothing like a US tech salary. There are exceptions out there, maybe Norway is one of them, but I wouldn't count on it.

And don't worry about degrees and shit. There are so many talentless people flooding the industry now and they're all getting six-figure jobs. Out of bootcamps and shit. Some of that is diversity hiring, but for the most part it's just that there's a bonanza happening (that has been happening for over a decade) and you should get in on it. There will be a correction at some point, so get in now and make yourself useful so you can weather the storm.
01-24-2020 03:48 PM
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budoslavic Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 03:48 PM)kel Wrote:  
(01-24-2020 02:19 PM)Mizuki1130 Wrote:  Even in Norway? Also isn't it harder to get into US companies without a degree in CS due to HR and other bs? I'm hoping my idea of how hard it would be to work in software engineering here is exaggerated

Norway has a very high cost of living as I understand it, I don't know what the salaries are like there, but having worked on four continents, I concur that there's nothing like a US tech salary. There are exceptions out there, maybe Norway is one of them, but I wouldn't count on it.

And don't worry about degrees and shit. There are so many talentless people flooding the industry now and they're all getting six-figure jobs. Out of bootcamps and shit. Some of that is diversity hiring, but for the most part it's just that there's a bonanza happening (that has been happening for over a decade) and you should get in on it. There will be a correction at some point, so get in now and make yourself useful so you can weather the storm.

As someone who works in web development as part of my employer's IT organization, a high percentage of the "diversity hiring" are from India. We get a lot of talent-less consultants that are flooding the IT organization's teams and the break room's refrigerators.

My brother (an electrical engineer) works for a private defense company (i.e., Boeing projects) and he told me his employer will not hire anyone from India. His employer works on projects that required security clearances so they look for people with very specific skillset, expertise and experience.
(This post was last modified: 01-24-2020 04:35 PM by budoslavic.)
01-24-2020 04:32 PM
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Mizuki1130 Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 02:22 PM)kel Wrote:  
(01-24-2020 02:08 PM)Mizuki1130 Wrote:  You mean from like github? I really want to get out of the US right after I graduate to maybe oslo somewhere in that area. They have lots of software engineering jobs over there and I speak Norwegian

I would agree with AntoniusofEfa above. Try to find a remote job with a US company. You can get a Silicon Valley salary and spend it in a lower cost-of-living place (not Oslo).

And yes, some contributions on Github would go a long way. But also you need some projects on your resume. That could be an open source project, but it'd have to be more than some bugfixes to other people's projects. So, do your best to find some kind of position, even if it's low paying. You don't need to stay long, in the tech industry jumping jobs every few months isn't that unusual, especially earlier in your career. Find something online, maybe, build a few people some shopping carts or something like that. Use that to get in to a position - probably junior, sacrifice salary if need be - with a company - probably just some local startup or something - and then use that position for your next. Once you've got one or two real positions on your resume (and you have the skills for the interviews) you can jump into a higher paid position with either a startup or established company.

Do you think an internship would suffice?
01-24-2020 04:34 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 04:34 PM)Mizuki1130 Wrote:  Do you think an internship would suffice?

An internship will suffice as something on your resume, yes. You just need experience you can put on your resume. Some open source contributions are good (if you want to hack the system, find a bunch of simple little utilities in whatever language you know, find an easy open issue, something as simple as a rare edge case or some documentation or tests, and submit PRs. Do this for a bunch of different projects so your github profile will be filled with the top six or whatever it shows. Do it over time so you get a streak of green activity in the date chart at the bottom) and then you need professional experience. Anything is better than nothing, so take whatever you can get, stick with it for as long as it takes you to have done a few things and left a good taste in their mouths (but no longer) and then move to something higher.
01-24-2020 04:49 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-24-2020 04:32 PM)budoslavic Wrote:  a high percentage of the "diversity hiring" are from India.

For me, it's women. Of color or otherwise, some immigrants but just as many natives. They usually have some kind of psychology/gender studies/communications type degree, did some make-work middle management/HR positions for a while, went to a bootcamp, and are now hired to fill quotas. Once you see it happening, get out. Get out of the company, preferably, but at least get out of the department.

There are talented women out there, and this diversity hiring bullshit destroys their credibility. And, in fairness, the industry as a whole is full of bullshitters. 1 out of every 10 male engineers, max, are worth a damn at all, and 1 out of every 30 or so females. As a general rule, a good team will be 100% male or damn close to it, proportionately white, disproportionately east and south Asian (native born or long-date immigrants, but not recent), and ideally everyone will be at least a little older than the pushed image of "startup life". Guys in their late 20s and 30s who've worked a few places before and have proved their worth. Juniors are fine, gotta get new blood, but often they are hired as "cultural fits", which just means recently indoctrinated, rather than being a smart and capable person who just needs a little mentoring and industry experience to get off the ground.
01-24-2020 04:59 PM
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mote Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
You didn't say what kind of code you want to write, but those langs you mention are a bit lightweight for doing anything interesting.

Is there a reason you didn't just follow the advice on the python thread?

If you want to get serious then learn how to code using the c++ standard library then you can find a physics related coding job or if you decide to move to another lang then having c++ as your foundation is invaluable in regard to your coding strength and your résumé.
01-25-2020 09:41 AM
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Lace em up Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-25-2020 09:41 AM)mote Wrote:  You didn't say what kind of code you want to write, but those langs you mention are a bit lightweight for doing anything interesting.

Is there a reason you didn't just follow the advice on the python thread?

If you want to get serious then learn how to code using the c++ standard library then you can find a physics related coding job or if you decide to move to another lang then having c++ as your foundation is invaluable in regard to your coding strength and your résumé.

Ive been holding off on asking questions related to programming until I completes an introductory computer science course. Its called CS50 and is offered through EdX. They use C during the course and Im told its a great foundation language. (Their is an alternate course that teaches intro CS using Python)

I cant help but think there could be a better foundation language to learn.

As I understand it, different industries favor different languages.

Speaking with a guy from a local tech company, tho hes not a programmer, he said they use C++ and he thinks they also use Python.

My question is, is C a good foundation for C++?

My goal is to become a knowledgeable and competent programmer.

Thanks

EDIT: Reposted this in the Python thread.
(This post was last modified: 01-25-2020 10:22 AM by Lace em up.)
01-25-2020 10:17 AM
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mote Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
C to C++ is a natural progression.

If you were not already learning C then I would say just start learning C++.

They both use the same IDE( my pref vs2019 ) and the code has similar vernacular,

Don't know how much time you have, but you could learn C++ While you're learning C.

Find a good book and work through the exercises.
By the end of the book you will be a semi competent intermediate C++ programmer with a clear idea of what you need to learn next and half an idea what kind of coding career you want to develop.

The difference between C and C++ is ++
++ = The world of object orientated code design, which is a very beautiful thing, once you get your head around what it is.
(This post was last modified: 01-25-2020 01:34 PM by mote.)
01-25-2020 01:28 PM
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Mizuki1130 Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
I just thought my situation was a bit different because I have a lot of math experience and some intermediate programming experience. I wasn't sure if the analytical skills from physics would affect the opinions of employers.
01-28-2020 03:58 PM
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kel Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
If you want to lean on your math experience, selling yourself as a math-guy-who-programs, you're best of (in terms of marketability) learning numpy, pandas, etc (Python libraries optimized for matrix math and stuff) and learn a bit of machine learning stuff (it's hot right now, the bubble will burst but you've got time).

C or C++ is a mistake if your goal is to get a job. It's also a mistake if your goal is to become a good software engineer. Frankly, unless you really want to do games, systems, or something very niche that you should be able to name right now, there is no compelling reason to learn C or C++ in 2020. The dividend will not be worth the investment, you will slow down your education and limit your career choices. I learned C as my first "real" language (not BASIC) in high school, I don't regret it, it forces you to be disciplined, but that was decades ago and I was hungry to learn for learning's sake and anything you get in terms of didactics from C you can get better elsewhere. In 2020, if you're learning C, you're setting yourself up for failure and frustration. Stop.
01-28-2020 11:28 PM
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AntoniusofEfa Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
C is still the foundation for everything embedded, and it is not going away. Also, every game or productive software has a piece of it written in C or C++, or even ASM, to be as quick as possible. I am in the embedded world, and I am one of very few younger guys in the team. Knowing C also makes it easier to learn some vhdl or verilog if OP wants to do Hardware Design and verification.

There are many kiddies able to write code in Java and use all kinds of groovy sounding tools, but there are not many who are able to write an algorithm in C, know the architecture of the processor on which it runs, and based on this knowledge, optimize the ASM output of the C code to make the best use of each and every processor clock.

Automotive embedded freelance work in a place like Munich pays at least 100 EUR an hour, and projects are usually long term, due to the rigorous testing procedures in the automotive world. Learning C and C++ is still rewarding.

However, if I were to start over in 2020, I might have skipped C and went directly to D or Rust.
01-31-2020 08:43 PM
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
Generally speaking if the manager who hires you has a degree, then they are more likely to want to see a degree. And if they don't they are less likely to care.

As someone who will be hiring a junior shortly I don't care about any formal training. All I want is a sign of raw ability. The best would be either a project they have done off their own back or considerable contributions to an open source project.

Many years ago when I hired some people they were all of this mould. There were guys with degrees wanting good salary and then the odd guy with no professional background who has been working on Open Street Maps and a few trinkets of their own. These guys were always the best picks.
01-31-2020 09:32 PM
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AntoniusofEfa Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
A degree in Software Engineering is more of a burden than an added bonus. The only real benefit I got from mine were the mathematics classes. The actual software engineering classes are at best a waste of a time. I learned about proper coding far more from high quality Youtube tutorials than in lecture or exercises.
02-01-2020 07:33 PM
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mote Offline
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
(01-28-2020 11:28 PM)kel Wrote:  C or C++ is a mistake if your goal is to get a job. It's also a mistake if your goal is to become a good software engineer.
Sorry, but this is nonsense.

C++ tends to be Top 3 for code jobs year on year so how can learning C++ be a mistake if your goal is to get a job?

C++ is a low level language which requires understanding of hardware level as opposed to more limited and less powerful langs which have you running code in a sand box, oblivious to what is going on at a deeper level ....so how does having a grasp of low level code at hardware level prevent you from becoming a good software engineer?
Common sense dictates the opposite is true.
(This post was last modified: 02-02-2020 06:15 AM by mote.)
02-02-2020 05:44 AM
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
Maybe what he meant is that C++ is not a hot growing field like Python, JS, or whatever else has been hot over the last 10 years.

If you learn C++, it opens the door to the less sexy jobs in the field. You might still make more money at the jobs in other languages.

However, knowing C++ does separate you from the vast majority of programmers because it's a powerful language that is difficult to learn. It is a blue-chip language: it will always be in demand because it is based on fundamentals of computer architecture.

What a man can be, he must be. --Abraham Maslow
02-02-2020 07:41 PM
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RE: Getting a software engineering job with just data structures
I review my freelance job offers occasionally, and I see a noticeable demand for C++ programmers. I suppose that it is going in the way of COBOL: much of the financial words backbone is built on this, still needs maintenance, and the ones who actually know the language are retired.
02-03-2020 06:05 AM
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