Yup, I’m over 50 and still love this technology thing I do.


Although I don’t have quite as many notches in my keyboard as this author I can certainly identify with his point of view. I haven’t been a ‘professional coder’ for many years but I still do write code most every day. I’ve evolved into a ‘technologist’; one who knows a good deal about a great many things yet is not expert in any. I’ve consciously given up the role of ‘expert’ on any given topic and traded it for a broad understanding of how all the pieces fit together.

Is it more valuable to be the ‘go to’ person for all things Javascript or, someone with experience ranging from COBOL to Node.js, video streaming to VoIP and embedded systems to data-center systems engineering? Frankly, I believe it takes about the same level of effort to do either. I spend a good portion of my waking hours reading; staying current (and relevant) can be a full time job in itself. I’ve come to learn of myself that I’m most rewarded by having a wide knowledge base rather than a deep one. The problem with being an expert on a given technology is what do you do when that technology is no longer relevant?

I don’t win contract coding gigs anymore, but frankly I don’t want them; the vast majority are too narrow in scope to be interesting and make money for someone else. I’m much happier consulting small businesses on how to improve their efficiency and lower their costs, advising start-ups on what NOT to do when rushing head-long to build the next-big-thing and running my own companies.

I love what I do and I’m quite happy to not be an expert thank-you-very-much.