Netbeans KDE Screenshot. Image credit Netbeans Forum
Netbeans KDE Screenshot. Image credit Netbeans Forum

Does this picture look familiar? If you recognized this as “NetBeans IDE”, congratulations. You are a programmer. If you’ve ever spent HOURS staring at a computer screen, finding that one typo that messes up your whole program, you know it’s not for everybody. Even you get frustrated at times, and you’re used to it. This picture is a screenshot of what was on my computer just seconds ago at the time of this writing, so I know how you feel. It’s the reason people like you and me make the big bucks, so celebrate the fact that you “get it” and have the potential to create the next big app.

You Might Be An Uber Geek If…

…You find yourself nodding at more than two of these references.

Programming Might Be For You If…

  • You have really good attention to detail and a ton of patience. You can keep track of the names of variables and classes, remember exactly which method out of a long list you want to use for any given operation, and track down the one exception that messes up your whole program. You aren’t thrown by the occasional error and can repeatedly test programs until you get it just right. If you’re like me, you can easily blow a few days just writing the first draft of your code and a couple more days working out the first round of errors.
  • You aren’t bugged when people look at you like an alien. Understanding a programming language is like being fluent in Klingon. It’s just a jumble of letters, numbers and symbols to a lot of people and they’ll think you’re tapping away in an alien language. Actually, you ought to be proud of yourself because you are working with a second language with its own vocabulary, grammar and syntax. A lot of people will look at you funny when you come up for air after working with your code for a few hours. Just smile and toss a polite Elvish phrase in their direction.
  • You’re willing to have the last laugh. You spent days, weeks, maybe months with that code and people laughed at you for thinking you were creating the next “Angry Birds.” When you have it just right, upload it to Amazon, the Android Market or the Apple equivalent and see what happens. Who knows, you just might create the next smash hit game.

Programming Might NOT Be For You If…

  • You care about what other people think. You’re the popular chick and you spend all the time you could be coding new programs messing around with makeup. You need to put the lipstick down and put your hands on the keyboard. Yes, even if it means breaking a nail from hitting that button too hard.
  • You’ve ever paid and/or conned somebody to do your math homework for you. You need to have at least a token ability at math to be good at programming. Your programs will have to add, subtract, multiply, divide, and compare the results of those equations with other variables. If you can do the math, you can at least make sure your code is coming up with reasonable answers.
  • You can’t stand being alone. Programming and other computer-related fields come up on the lists of best careers for introverts for a reason. Computer geeks are used to long, lonely hours of writing code and solving computer problems. If you’re not one of those people who can take the solitude, maybe you’d better consider another career where you can be around people all day. Fashion design, maybe.

Get Started With Netbeans…

…Or Go With Eclipse.

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