Programmers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development. It's 100% free.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I've been told that to be taken seriously as a job applicant, I should drop years of relevant experience off my résumé, remove the year I got my degree, or both. Or not even bother applying, because no one wants to hire programmers older than them.1

Or that I should found a company, not because I want to, or because I have a product I care about, but because that way I can get a job if/when my company is acquired.

Or that I should focus more on management jobs (which I've successfully done in the past) because… well, they couldn't really explain this one, except the implication was that over a certain age you're a loser if you're still writing code. But I like writing code.

Have you seen this? Is this only a local (Northern California) issue?

If you've ever hired programmers:2

  • Of the résumés you've received, how old was the eldest applicant?
  • What was the age of the oldest person you've interviewed?
  • How old (when hired) was the oldest person you hired?

How old is "too old" to employed as a programmer?

1 I'm assuming all applicants have equivalent applicable experience. This isn't about someone with three decades of COBOL applying for a Java guru job.
2 Yes, I know that (at least in the US) you aren't supposed to ask how old an applicant is. In my experience, though, you can get a general idea from a résumé.

share

locked by World Engineer Sep 6 '14 at 2:52

This question exists because it has historical significance, but it is not considered a good, on-topic question for this site, so please do not use it as evidence that you can ask similar questions here. This question and its answers are frozen and cannot be changed. More info: help center.

closed as not constructive by GlenH7, Thomas Owens May 2 '13 at 14:39

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

5  
You should stop coding when you stop loving it – altern Jan 5 '12 at 16:00

30 Answers 30

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.