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programming v hardware

Discussion in 'General CompTIA Certifications' started by mister_T, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. mister_T

    mister_T New Member

    programming v hardware

    There is a friend of mine who is considering doing programming but just thought I would check what everybody else thought first.

    I have spoke to someone about programming and they said this.

    There are more jobs in programming

    Programming is a course which you study at university, hardware is not-more respect for it in industry

    The market is flooded with people doing A+ and MCSE and people working in it

    The salaries for programmers are higher than those who do MCSE

    Programming is challenging. Hardware is a little more mundane, too easy and too reliant on the programmers who have allowed the hardware to work through their programs.

    Programming allows you to create things from scratch, hardware is simply plugging bits into a computer and configuring something(making something work that should already!). Plus you spend all day rummaging around on the floor under someones desk!
  2. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

    Utter tripe! Neither is "better" than the other. Software cannot exist without hardware to run it on for a start. And hardware is next to useless without software to utilise it.

    Tell your mate to follow the path that best suits them. Not the one thats "more respected" or is "better paid". I know systems admins getting paid more than I do, I know techs getting paid less than I do.

    Yeah its true that, in general, programming is more prevalent as university courses, but that doesnt mean hardware based roles are less respected or even less necessary.

    Programming is challenging but, depending on the role, so is Hardware. Imagine trying to pin down a network chokepoint throughout an extensive LAN. Is it router x? router Y? is it a configuration of the router? is some [email protected] sharing music through P2P, choking up the network? As a hardware tech (not low-level admittedly, but it fits the bill), you are responsible to tracking it down and identifying how to eliminate it.
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  3. cisco lab rat

    cisco lab rat Megabyte Poster

    Certifications: Yes I pretty much am!!
    WIP: Fizzicks Degree
  4. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    Ok then... :blink
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Office 365, Server 2016, CEH
  5. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    I think you are right that programmers earn more than technician/system admin positions on average. This is not a good justification for picking a career though.

    Some people mostly electrical engineers design and build hardware, they can also program firmware, PIC's or FPGAS, etc. Sometimes they write low level software like device drivers and OS internals too. Some places even design chips from scratch eg Intel / ARM / NVidia. Many other places have systems integrators.

    I agree in that plugging together stuff is generally easier than building it from the ground up, however support skills are more common than say R&D positions at CISCO or NVidia. I'd also say that programming jobs are LESS common than support jobs. There may however be a lower proportion of skilled people chasing those positions, I cannot say for sure.

    So that 'hardware' part of your question is rather vague, it covers everything from IT technician to chip designer.

    You can go to university to study hardware, its generally called Computer engineering or Electrical Engineering. There are also IT support or Networking degrees. Degrees in everything now, down to you to decide if they are worth the investment.

    Yes there are a vast number of people with the most common certifications, good to have the skills that these certs cover, I suspect a significant minority of the people do not have the skills and braindumped. However this still devalues the certs in the market place. Time to find something other than certs to differentiate yourself with!

    Programming gigs can be easy or hard, I'd say on average in my opinion that they are harder than a lot of support work and also know architects that do both software and hardware that say this. Programmers don't just code, often they create and support their own environments, sometimes do business analysis, project management, testing, troubleshooting, etc. I know programmers who are also unix admins, infrastructure architects, enterprise architects, CCIE, Electrical Engineers, Physicists, Mathematicians, etc.

    Some places do make an overly big deal about hardware procurement and install, the Pharma industry with their 'hardware qualification' for example.

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