I'm asking this question because I realize that if I teach my child about the technology of today - how it works, how to use it, how to build stuff with it - that a great deal of that information will be out of date when my child enters the workforce in 12 - 15 years.
This is going to happen for a bunch of reasons:
- I certainly hope that writing basic, redundant code will be done automatically. This might happen because tooling improves dramatically or because the languages that are used improve dramatically and remove the need for this kind of stuff.
- AI is going to replace a lot of jobs, even in technology.
- The jobs that will exist in the future don't exist and (mostly) haven't been dreamt up yet.
In such an environment, who can teach technology skills that matter? Not me certainly.
So, if we know that technology will continue to be important (it will) and we know that the details of that will change constantly and dramatically such that what you will need to do detail-wise at a job 15 years from now is hard to know, where do you go from there?
There are still skills that matter, you just have to emphasize them, even if you also do some detail-y technical work. Here's what I choose to emphasize:
- Think creatively.
- Do things with your creative thoughts - make stuff.
- Use technology and don't be afraid to get your hands dirty.
In the world of software, this last point is largely figurative. Your hands don't literally get dirty unless you've spilled a lot of coffee or toast crumbs into your keyboard over the years.
So, you have to teach them stuff. Teach them the big with the small.
The small stuff (details, technology) will expire. It always does. Sometimes faster, sometimes slower.
But while you're doing that you can learn to learn and not be afraid of it.
What 'it' will be in 15 years is anyone's guess.
Cover photo by @clever_visuals on Unsplash.
My name is Jonathan Fries. I work for Exadel, Inc. Exadel - https://www.exadel.com - is a great company, with great people all around the world. I currently lead the Boulder, CO, USA office.