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College kid, looking for advice.

P: n/a

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!
Jul 19 '05 #1
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14 Replies


P: n/a
"Jason Daly" <da********@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

In my experience, most major colleges are behind the times when it comes to
web design courses. A better bet might be a smaller Technical College,
which typically would be more current. Some schools now offer online
courses as well, so you could take courses from someplace thousands of miles
away. :)

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?

There are many different types of web developer positions, so it depends on
which area you would like to focus on. For example, some developers are
more focused on the artistic side, probably taking lots of graphic design
course. Some focus more on data driven sites, probably taking lots of
database courses and server side language courses. It's hard to say "take
these classes to become a web developer" because it really depends on what
area YOU want to focus on. Personally, I think you'll want a good knowledge
of the basics to start (HTML, XHTML, and CSS). Learn to develop to the
standards (see www.w3.org for specs) and validate your work using a
validator. You'll probably want to learn how to use AT LEAST one image
editing software package (like Photoshop, etc.). If you want to do any sort
of client side scripting, you'll want to learn JavaScript. If you want to
do Server Side development, you'll probably want to learn at least one of:
ASP, ASP.Net, PHP, JSP, ColdFusion. There are also lots of jobs for Java
developers.

Also, don't be afraid to take C++ or Java. Some of the methodology can be
applied to other languages as well, and having a good foundation in writing
clean code can be helpful.

Good luck,
Peter Foti
Jul 19 '05 #2

P: n/a
Not that I'm saying that you should drop out of college, necessarily, but
getting a job in the IT industry isn't that difficult without a college
degree. Certifications help though. But, before you put yourself in tens
of thousands of dollars in debt, it's something to consider. From
experience, I can say that one can get a really good IT job even with only a
10th grade education and no certifications. :]

Ray at work

"Jason Daly" <da********@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!

Jul 19 '05 #3

P: n/a
First off be careful of "Web Designer" vs "Web Developer". (names change
commonly) but one is usually a Graphics based occupation the other is a
Programmer. While sometimes you have to be both often they are seperated.

Get as much skill in as many languages as you can (PHP, Javascript,
VBScript/jScript, C#, etc, etc). Where from seems, at least to me, to matter
little. Proficiency is a must though.

--
Curt Christianson
Owner/Lead Developer, DF-Software
www.Darkfalz.com
"Jason Daly" <da********@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!

Jul 19 '05 #4

P: n/a
Getting a BS in Computer Science is different than going to a
vocational school to learn a specific skill. The BS curriculum should
give you the background and foundation so that you will be able to
adapt yourself to any technology. In college, you learn how to think
and how to problem solve. It is not a place where you "learn a
valuable skill" like at DeVry Technical Institute.

I received a BS in Computer Science 11 years ago and none of the
technology I use today even existed at the time. The fact is, with
the evolving technological landscape, it's more important that you get
the foundation to let you adapt to any situation.

That being said, if you want to focus on web design for now, take a
third party training course or CBT course or something to get you up
to speed on the syntax of the languages you want to use. What you
learn in college can be applied to any technology you learn along the
way.

My 2 cents. Good luck.

Jeremy

On Thu, 11 Mar 2004 10:08:33 -0800, Jason Daly <da********@yahoo.com>
wrote:

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!


Jul 19 '05 #5

P: n/a
Although.... it is getting tougher and tougher.
There are so many more coming out of school now that a degree definitely
wont hurt. It will also help show your willingness to learn and should boost
your starting base pay. Some of us older webbies got in early enough, but
now it's tough without some sort of paper degree

--
Curt Christianson
Owner/Lead Developer, DF-Software
www.Darkfalz.com
"Ray at <%=sLocation%> [MVP]" <myfirstname at lane34 dot com> wrote in
message news:uJ*************@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
Not that I'm saying that you should drop out of college, necessarily, but
getting a job in the IT industry isn't that difficult without a college
degree. Certifications help though. But, before you put yourself in tens
of thousands of dollars in debt, it's something to consider. From
experience, I can say that one can get a really good IT job even with only a 10th grade education and no certifications. :]

Ray at work

"Jason Daly" <da********@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!


Jul 19 '05 #6

P: n/a
I would have guessed that things were going in the opposite direction, but
yes, that would just be a guess. I haven't actively pursued a new job in
many years now, so I guess I'll find out whenever I get around to doing
that. Now I'm scared. ;]

Ray at work

"Curt_C [MVP]" <software_AT_darkfalz.com> wrote in message
news:u7*************@tk2msftngp13.phx.gbl...
Although.... it is getting tougher and tougher.
There are so many more coming out of school now that a degree definitely
wont hurt. It will also help show your willingness to learn and should boost your starting base pay. Some of us older webbies got in early enough, but
now it's tough without some sort of paper degree

--
Curt Christianson
Owner/Lead Developer, DF-Software
www.Darkfalz.com

Jul 19 '05 #7

P: n/a
Yup... for me it came down to the MVP award making the swing vote in my
favor. I'm even debating going to tech school or local University, just to
be safe

--
Curt Christianson
Owner/Lead Developer, DF-Software
www.Darkfalz.com
"Ray at <%=sLocation%> [MVP]" <myfirstname at lane34 dot com> wrote in
message news:eO**************@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
I would have guessed that things were going in the opposite direction, but
yes, that would just be a guess. I haven't actively pursued a new job in
many years now, so I guess I'll find out whenever I get around to doing
that. Now I'm scared. ;]

Ray at work

"Curt_C [MVP]" <software_AT_darkfalz.com> wrote in message
news:u7*************@tk2msftngp13.phx.gbl...
Although.... it is getting tougher and tougher.
There are so many more coming out of school now that a degree definitely
wont hurt. It will also help show your willingness to learn and should

boost
your starting base pay. Some of us older webbies got in early enough, but now it's tough without some sort of paper degree

--
Curt Christianson
Owner/Lead Developer, DF-Software
www.Darkfalz.com


Jul 19 '05 #8

P: n/a
Don't chafe too much having to take C++ or Java. My CS101 course taught
Pascall, which for the record I've NEVER used, but I learned something more
important in that class than the language.

There's more to programming than slinging code. I've met quite a few coders
who can't program! For a while I was performing all of the technical
interviews for the company I worked for at the time, and I recommended hires
based more on teachability, flexibility, and style than I did for language:
anyone can learn a language, but I hated having to break coders of bad
habits!

- Wm
--
William Morris
Product Development, Seritas LLC
Kansas City, Missouri
"Jason Daly" <da********@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...

I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?

The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.

What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?
*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!

Jul 19 '05 #9

P: n/a
On Thu, 11 Mar 2004 10:08:33 -0800, Jason Daly <da********@yahoo.com>
wrote:
I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
Stay there. It's scary out here.
I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)?
No. And double no. Web "design" isn't a field anymore, you have web
programmers, database programmers, middleware programmers, graphic
designers, copywriters, content authors and many other positions in
there.
I want to
program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
scour over problems and solutions in these forums?
Yes. To all.
The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
to be my profession.
Too bad. That's part of eductaion. What you want to learn RIGHT NOW
is something that won't exist in five years anyway. What you need to
learn in college is the stuff that stays forever. None of which has
any specific relation to anything, especially the internet.
I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
courses in web development.
That's a waste of money. But hey, it's not *my* money.
What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
web developer for a career?


You're under the impression that college teaches you to complete
tasks. As are most freshmen. You're quite wrong, and probably won't
believe me until you find it out too late. College is to teach you to
function in a changing world so that when the tasks you learned to do
this year don't exist next year, you'll have the background to learn
those new tasks ahead of when they are needed.

Your main goals in college should be (other than getting laid which
really should be fairly high on the priority list, something else you
learn too late...):

Communication skills - Learn to write and speak effectively. You can
be the lowest guy on the totem pole but if you can communicate well
everybody will look up to you.

Research skills - Learn to conduct valid research and come to valid
conclusions with the data to back up those conclusions.

Conceptual skills - Learn to assess how things relate to each other.
The practical side of this is you'll be able to effectively design the
databases and programming you so despartely want as a career.

Social skills - Learn to work with people in groups, in both a work
and social setting. And not just the skills needed to get laid,
though it's funny how often the same skills translate into business
environments.

Leadership skills - This is the key. Learn to lead others, even if
it's just getting the gang to see the same movie. This will put you
on the track to career success.

Business skills - Learn as much about economics and finance as you
can. When you understand how and why your business works, the web
site "design" for that business will make sense to both you and the
non-techies.

Math skills - Okay, this is task-oriented, but these skills apply
everywhere. Math will help you in your programming, and statistics
especially will help in business.

At this point, stop focusing on career skills. Focus on life skills.
You have plenty of time for the careers you'll experience.

Oh, and keep reading these groups, books, web sites and playing with
the computers. That's how you'll learn the task skills you need.

Jeff
Jul 19 '05 #10

P: n/a
"Jason Daly" wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
:
: I'm a freshman at college as a computer science major.
: I'm not sure it has what I want. Does anyone know if a major commonly
: exists in web design (focusing in server side languages)? I want to
: program for the internet, but don't know where to get all of my
: information from to be the most knowledgeable I can be. Do i find what
: i'm looking for in some class somewhere? if so where do i look? or do i
: just buy all the asp, php, xml, etc books i can find? or do I just
: scour over problems and solutions in these forums?
:
: The school i'm at now is teaching C++ and Java, followed by other
: computer courses unrelated specifically to internet, even if I want this
: to be my profession.
: I'm looking at a school of lesser prestige, which does offer some
: courses in web development.
:
: What exactly should I be looking for from my college and my major in
: order to know what I need to know when i get out and want to become a
: web developer for a career?

Jason...

You're young enough to try quite a bit to see what you like. My advice is
to get the C++/Java experience if you can. While I would not limit myself
to just those languages, they will be helpful for working in the UNIX world
and/or application development. The .NET technology allows many languages
to be used for application development that can interface with the web. If
you want to be a developer, specifically for the web, you will work with an
array of languages. Rarely will you only work on the server side since it
interfaces with the client, so you need to be familiar with both and how
they communicate together.

It is also helpful to have, which a lot of programmers do not, is networking
knowledge. I have run across numerous programmers who think they know
networking but sadly, they do not. If you have an understanding, rather
than just an expertise with a language, you'll accomplish more in a shorter
period of time.

You need your college degree to get in the door. Certifications will also
help you get some understanding and in the door. Experience will keep you
there. If you're just paper smart, they'll soon find out and you'll be
looking for another job. You have to think logically to troubleshoot and
experience gives you the foundation to troubleshoot faster.

I have been working with computers since 1979. I program in almost 30
languages but my main strengths are network design and security. I went
through the same type of scenario as the folks at Enron. The only
difference is we had to sign an agreement not to sue the company to get our
packages. There is a name for that in the legal profession. I have been
unable to find full time work now for over two years. Why? I can't get in
the door and with the rate I'm looking for, it is hard to get that without
some paper behind me. It appears that experience and knowing what I'm
doing, and being able to prove I can do it, for some reason is not good
enough. I do not have a college degree nor do I have a string of
certifications behind my name. I am over-qualified for most positions I
apply for but you can't fight the system. I tried putting myself through
college when I was 27-30 but eating was a greater priority so I had to drop
out. You also need to have a 4 year degree minimum because 2-year really
doesn't mean that much to get past HR.

I eventually worked my way up to a 6 figure income but after 9-11, Enron,
Dynagy, Compaq-HP merger, not having a college degree and not many
certifications, and living in Houston where most of the layoffs took place,
it has been extremely difficult to secure a permanent position. You do NOT
want to be put in that position. Get your degree while you can because
having that piece of paper is crucial and will be beneficial to you for the
rest of your life. Beyond that, get every certification you can relative to
that area you want to work in. Network with people in the industry because
it still is who you know more than what you know. With so many paper SEs
and developers out there, you still need someone to walk your resume over
and put it on the top of the pile. One more thing, hiring a professional to
land you a position will tend to benefit you in the long run for a higher
salary, signing bonus, etc. Head hunters are not trustworthy or reliable.
Putting your resume out on the net gets you more spam than offers and it
generally will get you more contract work than potential full time. Nothing
beats word of mouth.

Good luck.

--
Roland Hall
/* This information is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
without any warranty; without even the implied warranty of merchantability
or fitness for a particular purpose. */
Technet Script Center - http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/
WSH 5.6 Documentation - http://msdn.microsoft.com/downloads/list/webdev.asp
MSDN Library - http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp
Jul 19 '05 #11

P: n/a
Thanks very much to all...EXCELENT advice.

*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Don't just participate in USENET...get rewarded for it!
Jul 19 '05 #12

P: n/a
Jason,

A major piece to true data driven web development is having the skills of a
DBA. Knowing the ins and outs of the data store is crucial. Oracle and SQL
server for example. Building efficient stored procedures is an art. So focus
on the database development. Then learn Java as a language. Knowing Java,
you will be able to code in Java and Microsoft's C# for ASP.NET. This will
get you prepared for the core knowledge needed for web development. You will
become efficient in XML when studying the above. All that is left is
understanding state management and style presentation.Taking a graphics
class won't hurt on designing graphics for the web and understanding
complimentary color scheming..

HTH
-dlbjr

Discerning resolutions for the alms
Jul 19 '05 #13

P: n/a
what is data driven? It means database-oriented?

"dlbjr" <do******@do.u> wrote in message
news:uG**************@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
Jason,

A major piece to true data driven web development is having the skills of a DBA. Knowing the ins and outs of the data store is crucial. Oracle and SQL
server for example. Building efficient stored procedures is an art. So focus on the database development. Then learn Java as a language. Knowing Java,
you will be able to code in Java and Microsoft's C# for ASP.NET. This will
get you prepared for the core knowledge needed for web development. You will become efficient in XML when studying the above. All that is left is
understanding state management and style presentation.Taking a graphics
class won't hurt on designing graphics for the web and understanding
complimentary color scheming..

HTH
-dlbjr

Discerning resolutions for the alms

Jul 19 '05 #14

P: n/a
"Matt" <ma*******@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:%2****************@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
: what is data driven? It means database-oriented?
:
: "dlbjr" <do******@do.u> wrote in message
: news:uG**************@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
: > Jason,
: >
: > A major piece to true data driven web development is having the skills
of
: a
: > DBA. Knowing the ins and outs of the data store is crucial. Oracle and
SQL
: > server for example. Building efficient stored procedures is an art. So
: focus
: > on the database development.

<!--SNiP-->

Not to me but in this case, it appear that it does. Data driven generally
means dynamic pages created with server-side scripting driven by data on
demand. Probably most likely this means from a database but data can come
from text files, CSV files, spreadsheets, etc.

--
Roland Hall
/* This information is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
without any warranty; without even the implied warranty of merchantability
or fitness for a particular purpose. */
Technet Script Center - http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/
WSH 5.6 Documentation - http://msdn.microsoft.com/downloads/list/webdev.asp
MSDN Library - http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp

Jul 19 '05 #15

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