I was reading an old blog post http://www.kalzumeus.com/2011/10/28/dont-call-yourself-a-programmer/ and came across this line:
“Anyone describing themselves as either a Java programmer or .NET programmer has already lost.”
Well, I think that I didn’t get the job because it paid half of what I was making at the time, and they were looking for someone in their 20’s who could follow instructions and maybe work 16 hours a day. I also am not very good at job interviews and don’t really feel comfortable talking to people when I want something from them.
So language does matter. It doesn’t matter if you have the job and it doesn’t matter if you are doing work for free. It does matter if you are in an interview and they are looking for the best person for the job that day, not a few weeks down the road.
Oh, and the “don’t be a programmer” headline? Calling myself a programmer is good when I’m in a room full of surf board sculptors but is not a good idea in an interview. “Software Engineer” is a better description. I’m really a “Software Designer” because I write the code, plan the user interface, design the flow of work, etc…, and even write a little documentation. If you writes software, Don’t be a programmer. Be more.
P.S. I took the interview as practice. I knew I could not take a 50% pay cut and that the commute was terrible. But to be fair, I would have considered their offer had they made one. I had not made up my mind completely before having the interview; that would have been unethical.