To start out at a small software firm, or to go with one of the big guys? I’m wondering myself what the right decision is, what advice I’d give someone.
On the one hand, big guys mean bigger projects, more formally managed projects, and at least from that point of view, harder “software engineering” problems.
Small firms are less formally managed, but you may be pushing some technology to the limit, rather than just providing some service (however essential it might be) to the company. It’s the software that matters, not “the System.” And you’ll probably be working with better coders. (The best coders fill up the small shops, whereas they are just diamonds in the rough at the bigger shops).
In either case, this is turning into one of those things your parents always warned you about. You know, when they say it isn’t about the company, but it’s about you and what you put into it. Just like college was. I honestly could have gotten just as much out of college with a library card and Internet connection, and lots of free time.
Now that I’m moving up to the “real world,” I keep thinking: no matter what I do, it’s gonna be my responsibility to grow my skills and knowledge, and no one else’s.
It’s definitely going to be an interesting year…