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  • Writer's pictureTim Buchalka

Why Is It Important To Verify Opinions Before Accepting Them?

Updated: Aug 2, 2019

Opinions. Everyone's got an opinion. When making career decisions for your future programming career, it's vital to only listen to those people who actually know what they're talking about. Let's discuss that today.

We're talking about opinions and why it's important for you to listen to only those people who actually know what they're talking about.

It seems pretty basic, but unfortunately often the way that this world works is the people with strong opinions aren't always the people who know what they're talking about. They've got strong opinions and I want to push them towards you that may or may not be in your best interests.

One example I would give is which programming language to start with. If you talk to and you ask someone this question, you'll get a variety of responses. Some people will say Java as an example, some people will say Python. Some people will say, "Whatever you do, don't choose Java as a programming language because that's out of favour now and soon won't be used anymore." And then someone else will come along and say, "You need to use Java because it's proven itself. It's been here for a long time and XYZ company is now standardising on Java so, it's gonna be here for the long term." In other words, you're getting lots of conflicting opinions with anything like this: choosing programming languages, which framework to use, and so on.

Always go back to the person who's got this strong opinion and look at and see what's in it for them. Is there a reason for them being quite bluntly honest here? Is there a reason for them to benefit from that opinion? Some people, being completely blunt, won't want you to succeed. Perhaps they haven't achieved a level of success so they might try to steer you to another programming language that they believe will fail. I've seen that happen before.

People say that they've got a particular interest in Java. They like Java as a programming language. They might tell you, "Now don't go to Java. There's not many opportunities", thinking that they're increasing the likelihood that they'll have a programming job and they're not gonna miss out because you might be looking to get into that. So, always go back - I know it sounds pretty basic - but go back and look at the person who's making that statement to see do they know what they're talking about.

Obviously I used an example of dishonesty, but there could be another way to look at it. It would be people who are well-meaning that heard someone or have read on a blog post somewhere that Java is a great language to go for and to study. They might be telling that in good faith. They may have no ulterior motives, but again if you question them and find out where they found that information, try and get back to the source of the information to see do they know what they're talking about because look, career decisions are really important.

You don't want to leave this to chance.

You don't want to pick a programming language or a career path within programming based on what someone told someone or a friend of a friend told you that this could be a good idea. Check the facts yourself. Check the person who's providing the information. Even if that comes back positive, do your own research to make sure. Take the time to choose a programming language, in this case, or a framework or whatever it is that you have done some personal research on to make sure that's the right language for you.

Now let's add in one example, a programming language and/or a framework. There's lots of other things that you have to make decisions of, even things like which Integrated Development Environment (IDE) you're gonna go for: Eclipse, NetBeans, IntelliJ, Microsoft Visual Studio, etc. Everyone will have an opinion once you get into programming of which one's best and which one to use. Make sure you start formulating your own opinions. It's really important.

I have talked about this in previous blog articles. I talked about choosing an instructor, which is a lot of the same lines, and making sure that if you're going to pick a programming course or to buy an e-book, check the authors' credentials. This is more now talking about information on changing your decisions you're making for your programming career.

You want to make sure that you're vetting that information for yourself to make sure that any decision you make is in your best interests and you've researched that and there's a greater likelihood, much greater likelihood because you've done your own research that that information, that career, the path that you're choosing is going to be correct.

Now, in terms of programming language and because I've talked about that, two popular languages, Java and Python, I would recommend either one of those. The reason I'm saying that, obviously the negative for me saying that is that I'm an instructor. I've got a Java course and a Python course. Arguably you could say I'm biased, but that's not why I'm recommending it. I'm recommending them because there's so many job opportunities for Java and Python developers. You can easily verify this information for yourself by just going to a job site, typing in Java, typing in Python, and looking for yourself to see the number of programming opportunities that are offered for those programming languages.

That's an example of a quick way for you to research what someone's saying to verify it's true. Another good way to verify a programming language, because we're talking about that, would just go to a particular site, to Amazon for example, for e-books and type in Java or Python, or go to and type in Java or Python and just have a look at the number of courses on that topic.

Chances are, the more courses or the more books that are out there on that particular topic or programming language, the greater the likelihood that there's more opportunities because people buy those books or the courses. Basically there's a demand there for it.

So, do your own research. It's vital when you're making decisions. Don't just leave it to chance and don't just assume that someone knows what they're talking about. Make sure you go back to the source, check him, verify that person's credentials, but then also do your own research for yourself.

All right. So, I hope that helped. If you've got any questions, feel free to leave a comment and I'll get back to you.

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