I had a conversation last week with a professional programmer named Ryan, who’s the husband of my friend Betsy. As we were all talking about “the internet” over ice cream sandwiches and drinks, I had no choice but to ask the question that I think affects Gen-Yers today:
I have a lot of business ideas and thoughts for tech startups, but I can’t program. Is it worth going back to school to learn Computer Science, knowing that even after I graduate I will not be as good as you are now, let alone at where your skill level will be in 2 to 4 years?
This question is possibly the most difficult question that I have been facing for the last several years. Because of my soft skills in team building, working in groups and planning, I always saw my future career path including project management of some type.
However, most people I’ve spoken to about the subject (shout out to @theraysilva and @spyo) have told me that I really need to have some programming ability not just because I need it to communicate with my (future) team, but I have a statistically 0% chance of getting any job that would even put me on the path to becoming a project manager for a tech company as I am right now.
Going back to my ice cream sandwich conversation, Ryan’s answer to my question of whether it’s worth learning to program really surprised me. To paraphrase:
If you can set up a LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) and make a blog, not a “WordPress” blog, but an actual blog, you can make anything that exists on the internet… The big money is in linking front end development with databases.
So guess what. That’s what I’m going to do.
Using Professor Google, here’s what I aim to achieve:
- Using Virtual Box, I will install Ubuntu Server 12.04 which will serve as my distribution of Linux.
- I will manually install MySQL, PHP and Apache using command line to this server.
- I will then create a blog using PHP that will have an index and a page that will create the post.
I’ll link to all the tutorials and point out any of the problems that I’ve encountered on my way. I hope this process will be helpful to some people that are in the same boat as I am.
Here we go!