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Wednesday, January 10, 2001

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BYTE BACK

Sir -- I am a regular reader of ``eWorld.'' The articles reflect the real dynamics of the e-world. I would like to suggest some additions:

Case studies of dotcom companies.

Systems design-related articles such as BPR study reports.

Weekly special reviews on IT developments in areas such as manufacturing, agriculture, transportation and services such as healthcare.

Special skills in IT.

IT appointments.

R&D in IT world.

Kudos for the great effort over ``eWorld.''

G.N. Raju, Tata Engineering, Jamshedpur.

Sir -- I find Cyber Quest and Tip-Off in ``eWorld'' very useful.

I work in the administration section of a leading software company. I would like to shift to software engineering and become a Web designer. I am not interested in doing Java or C++. I would like to do a short-time course (with full module and worth) in designing Web sites using HTML, DHTML, FLASH 5, Photoshop and DREAM WEAVER.

Please give me details on what topics I should cover. Also suggest an institution/company where I could get some practice.

Arumugam Kayaroganam.

Hi,

Thank you for writing to us. First, before shifting careers, make sure that you want to, for reasons other than earning a quick buck. For, it is very easy to gain a particular software skill, get a job with a good salary and then feel left out once techn ology moves ahead. If you are taking that leap now, please ensure that you have the confidence and the enthusiasm to keep learning as technology moves along.

Specifically on technology, it is better to gain skills in the areas of programming languages such as C, C++ and Java which help you help applications programmers. In other words, you are a step ahead in the value chain if you have the last said skills.

With other skills such as those you have mentioned, it is good to gain them if you are already a sound programmer. What if the market loses fascination or if it becomes very user-friendly to use things such as HTML, DHTML and the like? In which case, pro grammers such as yourself may not be needed in the future?

Alternatively, as you learn these and get into a job that requires skills sets, you must continuously watch how technology moves and keep gaining those skills. With a C or C++ background, you might just be lucky to have the luxury of learning on the job, whatever skills that job requires.

But, as someone who has very specific skills such as mastery over Photoshop, you will be required to master the package before you get a job.

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