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A tech as well as a life question (actually more of a useless sleepless thought) : What do you think is more important? Exposing yourself to multiple technologies, career paths and life experiences or diving deep into a single technology, career path and life experience?

I feel like being an expert in 1 tech might pay off in terms of job life , and it would be bad for a person who is constantly switching between career paths, but sometimes i feel like i should have tried other paths too. Not just the life of a techie, like people who are deep into media and journalism, accountancy or those film industry jobs ; politics or finances , etc.

Its like, we found an apple to be a tasty fruit and now we have to be the apple guy forever. The better i am in being the apple guy, the more i will have to eat apples and the more i will earn. Why can't i try pears or oranges?

Comments
  • 4
    If you only eat apples, you'll never enjoy or see things from another perspective that an orange or grape could show you, and potentially improve your Apple growing techniques.

    There's nothing wrong diving deep into the apple cider, but you'll never appreciate the finer tastes of say oranges if you never open that bottle of orange juice.

    Also, if you pick the wrong tech to dive really deep into, there's the potential for the work to dry up. This industry is always changing and what was the latest and greatest yesterday, isn't necessarily the latest and greatest tomorrow, having exposure (not expertise per se) to other languages gives you a broader reach in the job market if you need to switch quickly.
  • 3
    You say, "...I should have tried other paths" as if your life is over. You can stop whatever it is you're doing at anytime. Trying different things helped me know what I didn't want to do anymore and what was much more fun.
  • 6
    If you only mainline a single tech stack, you will be irresponsibly unaware of what other tech stacks are doing. This makes you worse at your existing job because you lack perspective on what is possible, and it also leaves you vulnerable in the event of stack erosion.

    I'm doing dotnet core mainly at the moment, but I'm also skilled enough to jump ship and do java (in several flavors), front end dev (if I had to), and any number of other things.

    I've also worn many hats due to necessity and learned the business concerns of many verticals due to efforts on my part to understand the business processes of the customers I work with. Without that knowledge, my software wouldn't be able to solve their problems.

    You should also know general philosophy, Western and eastern. Philosophy (most of it anyways) gives you perspectives on how people operate and the bases of their thought process. Greek philosophy, confucianism, vedas, buddhism, ethics, and the billion other varieties allow you to intuitively understand the cultural motivations that drive people.

    Learn everything, career and otherwise. All things from as many perspectives as possible.
  • 0
    If you want to be forced to diversify in the tech space, go work for a tiny startup where there's perhaps 2-3 technical staff total. There you've got no choice but to learn everything, from infrastructure management to backend to helping Bob setup his emails.

    If you want to diversify outside of tech - go for it. Tech people can become great lawyers, accountants, teachers etc. if that's what's desired - or of course something else entirely!
  • 2
    The big plus about diversified knowledge is that you know shit no one else does, and that you can see things from a perspective not imaginable by others.

    One of my friends is without a doubt a better programmer than me. He knows a fuckton of tricks when it comes to writing code, especially ASP.NET. But as soon as speed or memory becomes an issue, I'm the one who can identify tens of possible issues due to my background in electronics, hardware architecture and C++.

    The other big plus about diversification is identification. In my company, I am "The ninja" because I am the only one who knows a lot about Japan. Can't say I've become a better developer through Japan, but I've built an identity, and people know me. I'm no longer an abstract concept, but a tangible person to them. This is especially true for the non-tech people.
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