21 June, 2007

Dying computer skills?

Did you see Computer World's, "The top 10 dead (or dying) computer skills" published last month? Some have been on the list for some time, such as Cobol -- it's needed just long enough to finally get companies off those legacy systems. What surprised me is even the mention of non-relational DBMS and non-IP networks. I guess I'm a bit ignorant in the fact they these two still exist in places.

Then there is the more obvious, Cold Fusion. Of course with open source solutions and better scaling solutions, Cold Fusion is on its last legs. I remember when it was a good choice, because the open source alternatives and Microsoft had not matured; now, if you're not a Microsoft shop, you're probably using open source.

For the rest of the items, couldn't we get something that is a little more "on it's way out," not already gone? take for instance the hobbyist turned pro developer. In the early days of the Internet, HTML was easy, and it didn't take too much to beg, borrow, and steal JavaScript code from others. Even CSS wasn't too much of a stretch. Now days with XML, AJAX, and dynamic sites, it takes much higher level of skills to be able to take your hobby and build a great startup product on your own or get hired by a company for your development skills.

What other skills do you think are on the way out? How about a Microsoft desktop OS? Is there life after Vista, or did Microsoft make it easier to look at Apple or Linux? And of course the PDA -- it's all smart phones now.

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