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Python and Ruby, each with roots going back into the 1990s, are two of the most popular interpreted programming languages today. Ruby is most widely known as the language in which the ubiquitous Ruby on Rails web application framework is written, but it also has legions of fans that use it for things that have nothing to do with the web. Python is a big hit in the numerical and scientific computing communities at the present time, rapidly displacing such longtime stalwarts as R when it comes to these applications. It too, however, is also put to a myriad of other uses, and the two languages probably vie for the title when it comes to how flexible their users find them.

A Matter of Personality...


That isn't to say that there aren't some major, immediately noticeable, differences between the two programming tongues. Ruby is famous for its flexibility and eagerness to please; it is seen by many as a cleaned-up continuation of Perl's "Do What I Mean" philosophy, whereby the interpreter does its best to figure out the meaning of evening non-canonical syntactic constructs. In fact, the language's creator, Yukihiro Matsumoto, chose his brainchild's name in homage to that earlier language's gemstone-inspired moniker.

Python, on the other hand, takes a very different tact. In a famous Python Enhancement Proposal called "The Zen of Python," longtime Pythonista Tim Peters declared it to be preferable that there should only be a single obvious way to do anything. Python enthusiasts and programmers, then, generally prize unanimity of style over syntactic flexibility compared to those who choose Ruby, and this shows in the code they create. Even Python's whitespace-sensitive parsing has a feel of lending clarity through syntactical enforcement that is very much at odds with the much fuzzier style of typical Ruby code.

For example, Python's much-admired list comprehension feature serves as the most obvious way to build up certain kinds of lists according to initial conditions:

a = [x**3 for x in range(10,20)]
b = [y for y in a if y % 2 == 0]

first builds up a list of the cubes of all of the numbers between 10 and 19 (yes, 19), assigning the result to 'a'. A second list of those elements in 'a' which are even is then stored in 'b'. One natural way to do this in Ruby is probably:

a = (10..19).map {|x| x ** 3}
b = a.select {|y| y.even?}

but there are a number of obvious alternatives, such as:

a = (10..19).collect do |x|
x ** 3
end

b = a.find_all do |y|
y % 2 == 0
end

It tends to be a little easier to come up with equally viable, but syntactically distinct, solutions in Ruby compared to Python, even for relatively simple tasks like the above. That is not to say that Ruby is a messy language, either; it is merely that it is somewhat freer and more forgiving than Python is, and many consider Python's relative purity in this regard a real advantage when it comes to writing clear, easily understandable code.

And Somewhat One of Performance

When it comes to running a start up, leaders need to make sure that their key players are motivated. This has been seen with many companies. Back in the 1970's it was found with the inspiration and diligence of the late Daniel Nigro when he formed Kleer-Fax. More recently it was seen in David Khasidy, the founder and recently retired president of SunRay Power Management, the most dynamic green energy leader in the US today.

The question is, what is it that great leaders like David Khasidy and Daniel Nigro do that make the difference? How do the most vulnerable companies (start ups) break the mold and become a part of our everyday lives?

It starts with their mission and vision.

Create a Strong Mission and Vision

There are many reasons why start ups fail. For one, they usually lack the capital to last through the lean times. Secondly, they often don't have the tolerance for setbacks that occur. Lastly, they do not have a long-term plan, also called a mission.

When a business has a strong mission, the team knows it and their focus toward their work and service to others within and without the company reflects that. To complement that, the shorter term vision of the company needs to be present as well.

This can even be seen in sole proprietorships with no employees, such as when Brian Pascale started his law practice. His vision was to find justice for his clients while his mission was to build upon a career that had already set precedents in the area of tort law.

As his practice has grown, new staff members can sense the vision and mission he exudes.

Encourage Ownership of Projects and Processes

Start ups need to inspire and motivate their employees because they need to know that they are not only a part of something important, but that their contributions mean something.

What won't happen if they are not there? What contribution do they make, and what are the consequences of them not fulfilling their part of the work?

By encouraging ownership in projects, team members can find that the work they are doing is not only important for the organization, but that they are going to be a big part of what makes it happen. The alternative is that they feel replaceable.

Offer Incentives That Keep the Company Competitive

When team members embrace the mission and vision of the company, and then take ownership for the company's success, they are going to need to be justly rewarded.

This could include flexible schedules (for those who don't need a stringent one), use of an account at a nearby takeout place, or even the potential for ownership as a result of a vesting program.

The incentive everyone is looking for more immediately, though, is cash. When the company takes in more revenue as a result of the efforts of those on the team, rewarding them can go a long way not only in making them feel appreciated, but in encouraging them to bring in more business.

Members of a start up team are usually very talented, and commonly underpaid. However, if they believe they are going somewhere, it will make a big difference.

 

Related:

Good non-programmer jobs for people with software developer experience

 Unlike traditional online courses that charge a fee, limit enrollment and provide credit or certification, Moocs (massive open online courses) are usually free or low cost and can host hundreds of  thousands global participants.  Although MOOC have been around for years in the form of collective techie learning gatherings, participation in 2012 has ballooned at a rapid pace likened to FaceBook in its heyday.  According to The Year of the MOOCarticle in the New YorkTimes, edX, a nonprofit start-up backed by Harvard and MIT, had 370,000 registrants in the fall of its first official courses. This paled in comparison to the amount of students that Courseraattained in its first year of online learning opportunities, 1.7 million!

Will MOOCs Replace education as we know it?

Like any new trend, massive participation in online classes has its challenges. Lynda Weinman has ample experience when pointing out that they are by no means a replacement for formal education.  As a former digital animator, special effects designer and classroom college teacher, Linda paved the path for an earlier version of MOOC education in the mid 90’s when she founded Lynda.comas an aide to her own students. Over four million students and 2,200 courses later she’s confident when clarifying that many of the collegespartnered with Lynda.com use the tutorials as added features to their existing courses.  When asked in an interview with ReadWriteBuilders, if high technical companies look at online programs in terms of advancement as a supplement to traditional education or as a way for people to further their careers, Lynda feels that “it’sjust one example of something that you can do to enhance your attractiveness to potential employers. But [it’s also important to have] a portfolio and body of work, references that actually work out, showing that you had success in the past.”

MOOC Benefits:

One of the biggest challenges in pursuing a career in software development is to figure out which language you want to work. In addition to commonly used software programming languages like C, C++, C# and Java a lot of new programming languages such as Python, Ruby on Rails have surfaced especially because they are used by a lot of consumer based start-ups these days.

It could then be a daunting task to figure out the technical language you should learn which helps you prosper in a software engineering career no matter the technology advancements that happen in the marketplace. Learning a fundamental and universal language like C# could be a great start to your career as the language is very mature and extensively used by companies large and small

What is C#

Similar to Java, C# is a multi-paradigm, object oriented language developed by Microsoft. C# is intended for use in developing software components meant to be deployed in distributed environments. So in essence, learning C# can enable you to write applications for large and complex server side systems that use sophisticated operating systems as well as compact mobile operating systems such as Android

Tech Life in Texas

Austin may be considered the live music capital of the world but the field of technology is becoming the new norm in the The Lone Star State. Home to Dell and Compaq computers, there is a reason why central Texas is often referred to as the Silicon Valley of the south. It?s rated third on the charts of the top computer places in the United States with a social learning and training IT atmosphere. Adding the fact that Austin offers fairly inexpensive living costs for students, software developers may take note as they look to relocate.
We always strain at the limits of our ability to comprehend the artifacts we construct -- and that's true for software and for skyscrapers. James Gosling
other Learning Options
Software developers near San Antonio have ample opportunities to meet like minded techie individuals, collaborate and expend their career choices by participating in Meet-Up Groups. The following is a list of Technology Groups in the area.
Fortune 500 and 1000 companies in Texas that offer opportunities for Cisco developers
Company Name City Industry Secondary Industry
Dr Pepper Snapple Group Plano Manufacturing Nonalcoholic Beverages
Western Refining, Inc. El Paso Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Frontier Oil Corporation Dallas Manufacturing Chemicals and Petrochemicals
ConocoPhillips Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Dell Inc Round Rock Computers and Electronics Computers, Parts and Repair
Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. Houston Transportation and Storage Transportation & Storage Other
GameStop Corp. Grapevine Retail Retail Other
Fluor Corporation Irving Business Services Management Consulting
Kimberly-Clark Corporation Irving Manufacturing Paper and Paper Products
Exxon Mobil Corporation Irving Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Plains All American Pipeline, L.P. Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Cameron International Corporation Houston Energy and Utilities Energy and Utilities Other
Celanese Corporation Irving Manufacturing Chemicals and Petrochemicals
HollyFrontier Corporation Dallas Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Kinder Morgan, Inc. Houston Energy and Utilities Gas and Electric Utilities
Marathon Oil Corporation Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
United Services Automobile Association San Antonio Financial Services Personal Financial Planning and Private Banking
J. C. Penney Company, Inc. Plano Retail Department Stores
Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. Dallas Energy and Utilities Energy and Utilities Other
Atmos Energy Corporation Dallas Energy and Utilities Alternative Energy Sources
National Oilwell Varco Inc. Houston Manufacturing Manufacturing Other
Tesoro Corporation San Antonio Manufacturing Chemicals and Petrochemicals
Halliburton Company Houston Energy and Utilities Energy and Utilities Other
Flowserve Corporation Irving Manufacturing Tools, Hardware and Light Machinery
Commercial Metals Company Irving Manufacturing Metals Manufacturing
EOG Resources, Inc. Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Whole Foods Market, Inc. Austin Retail Grocery and Specialty Food Stores
Waste Management, Inc. Houston Energy and Utilities Waste Management and Recycling
CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Houston Energy and Utilities Gas and Electric Utilities
Valero Energy Corporation San Antonio Manufacturing Chemicals and Petrochemicals
FMC Technologies, Inc. Houston Energy and Utilities Alternative Energy Sources
Calpine Corporation Houston Energy and Utilities Gas and Electric Utilities
Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas Computers and Electronics Semiconductor and Microchip Manufacturing
SYSCO Corporation Houston Wholesale and Distribution Grocery and Food Wholesalers
BNSF Railway Company Fort Worth Transportation and Storage Freight Hauling (Rail and Truck)
Affiliated Computer Services, Incorporated (ACS), a Xerox Company Dallas Software and Internet E-commerce and Internet Businesses
Tenet Healthcare Corporation Dallas Healthcare, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Hospitals
XTO Energy Inc. Fort Worth Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Group 1 Automotive Houston Retail Automobile Dealers
ATandT Dallas Telecommunications Telephone Service Providers and Carriers
Anadarko Petroleum Corporation Spring Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Apache Corporation Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Dean Foods Company Dallas Manufacturing Food and Dairy Product Manufacturing and Packaging
American Airlines Fort Worth Travel, Recreation and Leisure Passenger Airlines
Baker Hughes Incorporated Houston Energy and Utilities Gasoline and Oil Refineries
Continental Airlines, Inc. Houston Travel, Recreation and Leisure Passenger Airlines
RadioShack Corporation Fort Worth Computers and Electronics Consumer Electronics, Parts and Repair
KBR, Inc. Houston Government International Bodies and Organizations
Spectra Energy Partners, L.P. Houston Energy and Utilities Gas and Electric Utilities
Energy Future Holdings Dallas Energy and Utilities Energy and Utilities Other
Southwest Airlines Corporation Dallas Transportation and Storage Air Couriers and Cargo Services

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the hartmann software group advantage
A successful career as a software developer or other IT professional requires a solid understanding of software development processes, design patterns, enterprise application architectures, web services, security, networking and much more. The progression from novice to expert can be a daunting endeavor; this is especially true when traversing the learning curve without expert guidance. A common experience is that too much time and money is wasted on a career plan or application due to misinformation.

The Hartmann Software Group understands these issues and addresses them and others during any training engagement. Although no IT educational institution can guarantee career or application development success, HSG can get you closer to your goals at a far faster rate than self paced learning and, arguably, than the competition. Here are the reasons why we are so successful at teaching:

  • Learn from the experts.
    1. We have provided software development and other IT related training to many major corporations in Texas since 2002.
    2. Our educators have years of consulting and training experience; moreover, we require each trainer to have cross-discipline expertise i.e. be Java and .NET experts so that you get a broad understanding of how industry wide experts work and think.
  • Discover tips and tricks about Cisco programming
  • Get your questions answered by easy to follow, organized Cisco experts
  • Get up to speed with vital Cisco programming tools
  • Save on travel expenses by learning right from your desk or home office. Enroll in an online instructor led class. Nearly all of our classes are offered in this way.
  • Prepare to hit the ground running for a new job or a new position
  • See the big picture and have the instructor fill in the gaps
  • We teach with sophisticated learning tools and provide excellent supporting course material
  • Books and course material are provided in advance
  • Get a book of your choice from the HSG Store as a gift from us when you register for a class
  • Gain a lot of practical skills in a short amount of time
  • We teach what we know…software
  • We care…
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