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What Language Should I Learn?


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Hello!  I'm new to these forums, but not new to Larry Ullman's books.  


I am at a crossroads right now.  I'm trying to pick the best programming language for me to focus on.  I'm trying to change careers from Tech Support (ugh, yes) to programming.  


My brothers are .Net programmers and do VERY well making business applications.  Everyone at work (Apple) say to learn PHP and Ruby.  


What should I focus on to get into a programming role?  Even though I work at Apple doesn't mean that I will be coding in OS X.  


Thanks in advance =D

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Interesting question...especially how it's presented. You note that your brothers do very well using .NET. Is making a lot of money the priority? What are your priorities in what you learn? (That's a rhetorical.) The fact is pretty much any programming language can result in a lucrative career, if you're good. You can learn Swift, and become an iOS and Mac developer. You can learn Java and become an Android and enterprise developer. You can learn PHP, and become a web developer. You can learn Ruby or Python and do web and more...


First and foremost, I'd try to decide what kind of platform/destination is most appealing to you. What industry would you like to be in? 


I've used .NET and its fine, but it requires Windows desktops and servers, which is an issue for me (I have neither, aside from a Virtual Machine). But if you were a Windows person, there is an argument for .NET. If you're not a Windows person, it wouldn't make much sense as a choice as the very operating system itself would be something new for you to learn.

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To add to that, .NET just went open source and is available for UNIX systems. That happend very recently.


My advance is to look at Jobs in your community. Also, keep in mind that programming pilars such as algorithms and data structures is appliable to any language. Learn that. Also, learn HTTP if you want to work with the web.

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