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I'm having a computer unrelated job right now, but I want to become a programmer, I have some objective-c and iOS knowledge, studying hard in my free time, etc. I'm looking into getting a junior iOS developer position.

It will probably pay half what I earn in my current job, and I am not sure if I will like that. But I am really tired of my job and want to get experience in this field.

Also, working as iOS developer is great position, since they are in great demand. My country is Russia.

What do you think? Or Should I just do it in my free time, get some programs out in Appstore and look for better position? What would you do?

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closed as off topic by thorsten müller, Walter, ChrisF Nov 22 '12 at 13:25

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Career advice is specifically off-topic for the site, see the FAQ. – Martijn Pieters Nov 22 '12 at 13:06
up vote 11 down vote accepted

There's nothing wrong in becaming a junior programmer at 27, given your previous life as a computer-unrelated worker/professional. Most of your future possible employers will not have anything to complain about this.

Moreover, if you have a previous qualified experience in another field, it can become useful in your programming career. For example, I'm a chemist, not a CS graduate, and I often worked on projects that leveraged my previous experience as a chemist. This "second life as a programmer" scenario is quite common in this field.

The real problem is another one: competition is very, very hard in our field. It is quite easy to find college people (17 to 19 years old) that can create beautyful, non-trivial applications on smartphones.

How would you compare with those people? Can you offer anything that they cannot offer?

This is the real reason why you should try to leverage some of your previous experiences. It does not matter if the experience you are going to leverage comes from your previous job (as it is in my case) or from one of your hobbys. What matters is that you have to differentiate yourself from the crowd of other programmers out there (many of them younger than you).

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