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  • A point in the right direction?

    After reading the other "first time" posts, along with a few of the suggested articles, I didn't quite get the answers I was looking for. (There was one post that was almost exactly my situation but alas, it was locked and had an angry comment.) I am soon to be a High School senior looking only at IT for majors and after reading an article in a recent Popular Science magazine about Defcon, I decided to research this 'organization' a bit further. My first impression of Defcon was a bunch of seedy-looking characters sitting in dark places around the room crouched over laptops, but much to my surprise, many of the people interviewed for the article worked for "name brand" companies (IBM, AOL etc.)
    Now onto the questions: First off, what is the most useful programming language to learn for someone in the IT field. (I read Don Parker's article and he suggests 'C') Next, what is the best platform to use? I know that I should be a least familiar with all the major ones right? I use an Apple computer right now and it would take a lot to make me part with the Apple logo. (It's strange how Mac users become attached to their computers isn't it? The Cult of Mac is a good read on this topic) On this note, will it hurt me to not be using a Windows machine when I'm first starting out? I cannot tell much from the titles of the books on the "suggested reading" list as to which are really technical and which are more basic, if there even is a big difference.
    Also while reading Don Parker's article, he talks about certifications. I would think that many companies would absolutely require some sort of certification, but he makes it seem as though they would not, just something to be desired. Any thoughts on this?
    My last set of questions are more about the people reading and hopefully commenting on this. What kind of computer(s) do you guys mainly use? What OS? Do you enjoy what you do? Last question: How many people here play World of Warcraft? (sorry it's off-topic, but it seems like it'd be right up your alley)
    If I missed something while looking around the forums and this is a duplicate post, oops. I also hope that my command of the English Language is strong enough for "Chris." Lastly, I am planning on attending the Rochester Institute of Technology, maybe some of you have heard of or been there?

    Thanks in advance to those who comment usefully.

    Feel free to drop me an email at : JFrance03@yahoo.com

  • #2
    Originally posted by JFrance
    ...There was one post that was almost exactly my situation but alas, it was locked and had an angry comment.
    Learning from other people's mistakes shows wisdom. Let's see how it worked for you...

    what is the most useful programming language to learn for someone in the IT field. (I read Don Parker's article and he suggests 'C')
    "The IT field" is a bit broad. We have tons of thread on what language is best to learn first. In one of those thread I even found many of the threads and linked to many of them. You will have to be a bit more specific. If you are going to be an IT Systems programmer, that is different from an IT Director or manager. which are both different from a support monkey.
    Which language is best?
    The kind of response many people get when they do not look for threads about language

    Next, what is the best platform to use?
    Covered in a number of threads. Use what you like, learn about the OS that get you paid, try everything and decide for yourself.

    I know that I should be a least familiar with all the major ones right?
    It depends. Do you want to have an easier time finding a job?

    will it hurt me to not be using a Windows machine when I'm first starting out?
    Yes.

    I would think that many companies would absolutely require some sort of certification, but he makes it seem as though they would not, just something to be desired. Any thoughts on this?
    We have threads on this. Search forums on "certificate" and/or "degree".

    What kind of computer(s) do you guys mainly use? What OS? Do you enjoy what you do?
    I prefer a *NIX system over Windows, or MacOS, but I am comfortable with using more than just these three OS.

    Last question: How many people here play World of Warcraft?
    People who desire to volunteer such information have done so in another thread about "games you are currently playing."

    If I missed something while looking around the forums and this is a duplicate post, oops.
    Nice.

    For your first post, your did not score too well. On a 1 to 10, where 1 is fucktard, and 10 is super smart hacker-type, you get only a 3 on my scale for your first post. (It would have been a 2, but your language skills were better than average.)

    Many of the questions are asked and answered in other threads. Threads that ask too many questions like yours tend to go everywhere or nowhere because there are too many topics for discussion, and as you should see, your topics have come up in threads that specialize in a subject.
    Last edited by TheCotMan; June 6, 2005, 17:50. Reason: typo, adding links, fixed bad url, duhh... spelled "smart" incorrectly

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    • #3
      Originally posted by JFrance
      After reading the other "first time" posts, along with a few of the suggested articles, I didn't quite get the answers I was looking for. (There was one post that was almost exactly my situation but alas, it was locked and had an angry comment.) I am soon to be a High School senior looking only at IT for majors and after reading an article in a recent Popular Science magazine about Defcon, I decided to research this 'organization' a bit further. My first impression of Defcon was a bunch of seedy-looking characters sitting in dark places around the room crouched over laptops, but much to my surprise, many of the people interviewed for the article worked for "name brand" companies (IBM, AOL etc.)
      Some of us even date real live women (or men).

      Originally posted by JFrance
      Now onto the questions: First off, what is the most useful programming language to learn for someone in the IT field. (I read Don Parker's article and he suggests 'C')
      Depends entirely on what you want to do in the 'IT Field'. If you were going to be a developer at Microsoft, I'd say learn Visual Basic .NET and C#. If you are going to be an administrator I'd recommend Perl, Python, and Bash scripting. I work in the industry and I dont code or script anything anymore, I spend most of my time focusing on project management and making sure my organization is doing the most secure things it can and that we are in compliance with all state, federal, and local laws. So, it really depends. You cant go wrong learning C, but the term 'best' is purely subjective in this case

      Originally posted by JFrance
      Next, what is the best platform to use? I know that I should be a least familiar with all the major ones right? I use an Apple computer right now and it would take a lot to make me part with the Apple logo. (It's strange how Mac users become attached to their computers isn't it? The Cult of Mac is a good read on this topic) On this note, will it hurt me to not be using a Windows machine when I'm first starting out? I cannot tell much from the titles of the books on the "suggested reading" list as to which are really technical and which are more basic, if there even is a big difference.
      Once again, purely a subjective thing. Using Linux or FreeBSD while working as a developer at Microsoft would probably hurt more than it helps, but a Windows XP Pro box running Visual Studio .NET would be great. If you are a network admin, having the power of a UNIX box at your disposal would probably help you simplify your life. For example, I use XP pro as my desktop OS. Why, you may ask? I dont have time to sit around and twiddle with a million little settings to make my scroll wheel mouse work or to get my resolution dialed in. I need an OS that just works out of the box so I can spend my time doing business. That said, I have a Gentoo box at my feet that is set up for doing penetration testing and network sniffing, because when I do get to conduct assessments I have the time to fiddle with a million little things to get exactly what I want out of it. Overall, knowing Windows, *nix, *bsd, OSX, and the common business appliations and protocols (Active Directory, LDAP, Exchange, SMTP, DNS, etc) wouldnt hurt.

      Originally posted by JFrance
      Also while reading Don Parker's article, he talks about certifications. I would think that many companies would absolutely require some sort of certification, but he makes it seem as though they would not, just something to be desired. Any thoughts on this?
      You'll get a real difference of opinion on this one. I'm a firm believer that certifications are nothing more than a way for companies to get money out of your pocket and that they make for a great smoke screen for morons and idiots to hide behind. That said, having an impressive alphabet soup on your resume will get you past the HR drone who typically doesnt understand fuckall about the position they are hiring for and thus defaults to 'they said you gotta have this to be considered'. I look at resumes all the time. If I see one that is clearly trying to impress me with a list of certifications and 0 business experience, I dont even give them a phone call. If I get a resume that is lacking a lot of certifications but the person has an impressive work history, they're going to get a call. I'm far more impressed with what you've done than with what tests you were able to pass. Thats just me, YMMV.


      Originally posted by JFrance
      My last set of questions are more about the people reading and hopefully commenting on this. What kind of computer(s) do you guys mainly use? What OS? Do you enjoy what you do? Last question: How many people here play World of Warcraft? (sorry it's off-topic, but it seems like it'd be right up your alley)
      I mainly run Windows, Slackware, and Gentoo. I prefer AMD processors. I'm a Libra. I'm not much of a talker, but I am a good listener. I enjoy long walks on the beach and power ballads by Journey. Oh, I also enjoy guns. Lots and lots and lots of guns. Booze too.

      Originally posted by JFrance
      If I missed something while looking around the forums and this is a duplicate post, oops. I also hope that my command of the English Language is strong enough for "Chris."
      You can drop the quotes

      I return whatever i wish . Its called FREEDOWM OF RANDOMNESS IN A HECK . CLUSTERED DEFEATED CORn FORUM . Welcome to me

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      • #4
        i guarantee you could have found answers to every one of your questions using the search feature in less time than it took to write that essay.
        the fresh prince of 1337

        To learn how to hack; submit your request

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