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What can I do to become a software engineer?

I am wanting to develop a software engineering skill set, possibly to use in future work as a software engineer. I have some questions about getting into this field. 1.) Where would I go for mentoring in this field? Is there somewhere in the open source community that can let me acquire the experience I need to possibly get a job in software engineering in the future? 2.) Is a consulting career (doing this for clients for hire) viable in the future, once experience is gained? 3.) Since I come from an engineering (including electrical and computer) background, would embedded software engineering be a good fit for myself, or should I just stick to non-embedded programming? 4.) What languages would be a good fit for a.) embedded b.) application and c.) web? 5.) I've heard of a formal software development process/lifecycle? Is this what software engineering covers, and is there an Internet tutorial on this? 6.) Any other tips? Thanks!

Asked By: Confused about life - 9/1/2007
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
1) Working on open source projects in general especially large established ones will give you skills and experience that will help - software engineering to many is as much about the management of software as programming, seeing large projects and how they operate will give you experience of both... More
Answered By: d_i_b_b_y - 9/1/2007
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