[tpm] [Boston.pm] Perl community "The Rising Costs of Aging Perlers"

Olaf Alders olaf.alders at gmail.com
Wed Jul 24 09:03:06 PDT 2013

On 2013-07-24, at 11:53 AM, Fulko Hew wrote:

> On Wed, Jul 24, 2013 at 11:35 AM, <arocker at vex.net> wrote:
> >
> >  Knowing enough about these things (CSS, JS, Bootstrap) to be dangerous is
> > good enough in a lot of cases.
> >
> With the rate at which the flavour-of-the-month in Web techniques changes,
> it's sheer coincidence if one finishes a project with a detailed knowledge
> of the tools and processes favoured for the next one.
> Surely, the real skill is knowing how to pick up and learn use new tools,
> without having to sit passively in front of an instructor? That's what the
> schooling industry claims to teach, and conspicuously doesn't.
> Unfortunately, this skill doesn't seem to have a name that a recruiter
> will recognise.
> I call that skill 'being smart',  and its the second criteria I have, just following:
> 'can I understand your speech'.  My third most important criteria is 'what is your
> previous experience'.  But your right... how do you get that past a recruiter?

Having a portfolio of your Open Source work on github/CPAN/etc goes a long way to solving this problem.  When I've been involved in hiring decisions, if someone is already familiar to me because of their Open Source contributions, they already have a distinct advantage over those who don't.  If I don't know them but can see the work they've contributed to projects, that's still very helpful.

If I can see that you do well with X and Y, I might be inclined to believe that you can also cope with Z, even if you haven't worked with it before.  If that work isn't out there, it's harder for me to judge.  There's also the peer review aspect of Open Source that is very important.  If I see you've contributed to projects and that you've met their standards of code quality, it tells me about the quality of your work and also how well you work with other people.  I could go on about this for a while, but basically it comes down to people who get involved in Open Source being more of a known quantity.  This can be both good and bad, of course.  If you're a jerk in your dealings with other Open Source authors, that will work against you.  It's just a very simple way of opening up your work to the world and showing what you can do.

Olaf Alders
olaf.alders at gmail.com


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