Hi all, was thinking earlier this morning (not a good thing!)...I wonder what got developers started in developing. For me, it was a case of being very limited in what I could do with HTML/CSS. It was usual for me to turn down work as I could not implement features they wanted, that's what got me learning and developing.
What got you started?
This book: Amazon.com: Basic Fun: Computer Games, Puzzles, and Problems Children Can Write (An Avon Camelot book) (9780380806065): Susan Drake Lipscomb, Margaret Ann Zusnich: Books
This question actually reminded me I wanted to find a copy and order it, which I did. =D I started a new job a few months ago (as the sole developer for a mid-sized company) and I've been asked a lot quite recently what got me started, and I always quote this.
I started with computers when I was just barely four. Back with Windows 3.1 it was a pain to make my games start, so I learned to write very rudimentary batch files to start them easier. =p Then when I was 9 or 10 I found that book at my grandma's house when I was visiting (she goes to a lot of auctions and just buys boxes of stuff, kind of a pack rat).
From there I started learning HTML (CSS didn't really exist yet). Shortly after that I started learning C++, then Java, then eventually PHP/MySQL and Flash/AS2, and it just kind of ballooned from there and now I use a whole bunch of different languages on a daily basis and still love it.
I loved being able to essentially create something from nothing and reducing ridiculously long and complex problems into a few keystrokes and mouse clicks. =)
I started on a C64... Yeah I'm old
Playing games with friends, then one of them showed me a simple little game he'd written himself in Basic... and the rest is history.
I started on comodor 64. I used to play a gamed called Prince of Persia and use to learn DOS commands. It really inspired me to learn more. With the passage of time, i started to observe that the number of websites are increasing day by day. I started my own blog and it really triggered me to learn web development to create my own site. This how it worked for me.
You're old too
In mid-life I had to write a CV using Word and found it bloody annoying (I had caps lock on, then accidentally hit the insert key and so on) - but thought I understood what was going on in the background at least.
Then I replicated the front page of a newspaper in PageMaker, and thought this was cool.
Then I did a short Photoshop course at the local dark room (I was into BW photography at the time) and have never touched a Mac since.
Then I did an Autocad course, then got a job testing the GUI of a large GIS project, then took some time off and taught myself web-programming - html, css, vbscript (yes, I know, I picked the wrong book off the shelf then) vml and video.
Then I installed PHP and because I got stuck I asked a question on IRC and got two kind and helpful answers from 2 people in 2 countries within an hour or so - and was totally and utterly hooked.
I know, i just never wanted to accept it