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You're missing my point, what I do for work and what I do otherwise are two different things, with the former vastly less important. I do that, as you say, to eat, and it just happened to be a comfortable way of doing that, since I already have the knowhow for it. But the second my job impedes in my passion for programming, I usually bail, because it's now worth it. Early in my career I figured it was a slam dunk to work in the game industry, like so many of "us" tend to do, and even though it was a more 'preferable job' in it's own right than many others, it did little more than feed me and kill my hobby. (not so inclined to sit down and code for fun after having spent 8+ hours doing code someone else told me to write) So I quit, and did less meaningful jobs, which left my passion alone and stil kept me fed..

Nothing defines a person MORE than their passion, be it for a wife, a child, or a hobby that has fueled an enormous personal wealth and happiness, far more than that which money can provide. It seriously bugs me the stuff you say, on a personal level, I have this image of you sitting behind a desk worrying about TPS reports and calling everything that
defines me as a programmer garbage and meaningless...

This is my final post, since all the other people probably don't want to hear it, and sorry about the noise everyone.. (but sometimes I think most software people need to hear it, if nothing else to get in contact with something they might have lost along the way)

Brandon Van Every wrote:
On Feb 9, 2008 7:16 AM, Stefan Sandberg <> wrote:
I don't agree with anything you just wrote.. The hobbyists much more
'define' the software industry than 9-5 cubicle'ites as yourself..

Eh?  I'm a telecommuter and self-employed since 1998.  I believe in
consulting for $$$$$, then reinvesting some of the proceeds into Open
Source projects that are likely to lead to more $$$$$.  Open Source
projects achieve the greatest commercial relevance by having a
business model.

Not a single one of the friends I know that are good programmers started
doing anything even remotely close to profitable or "job" related stuff..

I've also done plenty of $0 ideologically driven Open Source.  Yes it
makes one a better programmer, but it's not very smart from an eating
or an impact standpoint.

One grand example of this is the demoscene (,

I'd be happy to debate this on or your favorite game
development forum.  I would have responded to your post privately, but
I wanted to state for the record that I'm not a cubicle jock.

At least that's how I got into "official" programming, and I'm not
worried about loosing a job etc, I'd be just as happy doing construction
or babysitting or deodorant smell-tester etc,
but I will NEVER stop doing what I love, something you probably don't

It's true that I don't.  My goal is to be well paid for doing what I
love.  You can do that too.  Your happiness doesn't have to be "on the

Brandon Van Every