Fundamentals and Job Hunting

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Articles on the basics of software engineering and how to find a job. Check back — We’ll be updating this area regularly.

Best Practices: Change is all You Need

If you put ten engineers in a room and ask them about best practices, you’re probably going to get at least 20 opinions. If you ask them again six months or a year later, you’ll get a new set of 20 opinions, and there won’t be a whole lot of overlap. So herewith is the only best practice I’ve been able to stick with: It’s all going to change, so be ready. continue…

Trends

Software Engineering as a career is a juggernaut. In 2011, it was described as the best job in America by CNN, U.S. News and World Report and others. Why? High pay, good work environment and a whole lot of hiring. So where are all these software engineers going? What are they doing, and how do they get there? continue…

Job Hunting Tips for Engineers

You love being a software engineer and you’d like that to continue. There’s just one small problem: You need, or want, a new job. The good news is that the market for software engineers in the U.S. is pretty hot. Here some things to consider as you plan your strategy. continue…

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Even If Nike’s FuelBand Is Failing, Wearable Tech Isn’t Dead

Nike FuelBand
Over the weekend, CNET reported that Nike planned to lay off employees working on its FuelBand, a “smart bracelet” that tracks the wearer’s physical activity. “As early as this fall, Nike planned on releasing another iteration of the FuelBand—an even slimmer version—but cancelled the project,” the publication reported. “And it appears to have shelved all future physical product projects under the Digital Sport helm, the person familiar with the matter added.” Click here for wearable tech-related jobs. A few days… continue…

Getting a Job at Google

Posted In Looking in Tech
Google NY Office
Earlier this month, New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman switched from writing about globalization and international politics to a topic much closer to many a reader’s heart: how to get a job. Friedman’s interview subject for his column was Laszlo Bock, who serves as SVP of “people operations” at Google—he’s the one ultimately in charge of hiring. And according to Bock, snagging a job at the search-engine giant involves a combination of grit, cognitive ability, adaptability, and creativity. From… continue…

Business Unit Coders Are No Threat to IT

Posted In Looking in Tech
Business App
An increasing number of corporate workers are taking it upon themselves to develop business technology solutions without the participation of IT. While that could sound like a threat to professional developers, it’s probably not: Forrester Research notes there’s a dearth of development talent out there, and that most of the applications being built by these “citizen developers” address some kind of problem that’s been backlogged by the technology department. “Most of the software built by ‘citizen developers’ addresses requests on… continue…

10 Startups Leading the Way on Big Data

Posted In Big Data, Data
Data Analysis
An increasing number of startups are positioning themselves to take advantage of demand for Big Data solutions. It’s no surprise. IDC forecasts that the Big Data market will outpace the growth of the overall information and communications tech sector to reach $32.4 billion by 2017, so Big Data is a good place to be. The use of Big Data is relatively new, which means the candidate pool for solutions can be small, observes John VanderSande, a Boston-based principal consultant with… continue…

More Tech Pros Earning Six Figures Than Ever

Posted In Looking in Tech
Chart: Percentage of Tech Pros Earning 6 Figures
The number of technology professionals earning six-figure salaries has increased for the sixth year in a row, according to new data from Dice. Some 32 percent of full-time tech pros took home more than $100,000 in 2013, according to the findings, up from 30 percent in 2012 and 26 percent in 2011. For contractors, the data is even better: In 2013, a staggering 54 percent of them earned more than $100,000 a year, up from 51 percent the previous year… continue…

What PlayStation 4 Winning the Console Wars Means for Developers

EA Game Screen Shot
  Sony’s PlayStation 4 is plunging ahead of Microsoft’s Xbox One in total sales, according to reports. The PlayStation 4 has managed to sell 7 million consoles in its first five months of release, along with 20.5 million games. That’s a striking contrast to the Xbox One, which has sold 5 million units since its November debut. Click here for game development jobs. In an attempt to put a positive spin on the numbers, Microsoft executive Yusuf Mehdi released an… continue…

Extreme Livestock: What Happens When a GoPro Lands in a Pig Pen [Video]

Posted In Living in Tech
Pig Pen Video Thumbnail
You’ll learn several things from this video: Don’t drop your GoPro from an airplane, GoPros are incredibly well-made and when photographed from certain angles, pigs look a lot like the star of Cloverfield. Related Stories A Hilarious Video of a Business Meeting’s Lone Engineer This Hysterical Video About BuzzFeed Is Right On Target  GoPro Unveils Dive Camera Housing H/T: CNET

Americans Upbeat on Future Tech, But Still Dislike Drones

Posted In Living in Tech
Future Tech 50 Year Predictions
Americans are optimistic about future technology, according to new data from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, even if some of that technology freaks them out. Some 66 percent of those surveyed by the Pew Research Center believed that altering their children’s DNA “to produce smarter, healthier, or more athletic offspring” would represent a change for the worse. Majorities seemed similarly reluctant to embrace lifelike robots taking care of their aging parents, personal and commercial drones running… continue…

Should Employers Ban After-Hours Work Email?

Posted In Living in Tech
Employee Asleep on Desk
Earlier this month, two French employee unions decided to show how they felt about work/life balance by signing a legally binding agreement that would forbid employees from checking work email after a long day at their desks. The agreement will affect only 250,000 employees in the technology and consulting sectors, according to The Guardian, although a number of them work for Google, Facebook, and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)—not exactly firms known for allowing their workers to unplug from the grid. Click here… continue…

The Future of Robots: Soft, Flexible, Squeezable

Posted In Working in Tech
Otherlab Soft Robots
If someone asks you to picture a robot, the first image that probably comes to mind is the steel exoskeleton from “The Terminator” films, or one of those creepy mechanical “dogs” produced by Boston Robotics. But if teams of researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) and other institutions succeed in their latest endeavors, the robots of the future could look very different: soft, squiggly, and flexible. Click here to find robotics jobs. “There are only maybe… continue…