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Web Developer

Lead Web-Developer Daniel Ashley works for a graphics company in Maryland. As his title might suggest, he develops Web sites for the company's customers. Sound like something you might like? Read on.

Daniel, what is a typical day at work like for you--what do you actually do at work?
My typical day only contains a few hours of actual programming.  I spend an hour or two in client meetings discussing projects in process.  I spend two or three hours giving support to projects that have already been completed.  

What education do you need to be competitive/succeed in this field?
A four-year degree in computer science or a similar field is necessary to find a job.  After the degree, hard work and a bit of luck is required to be successful.

What do you like about your job? Anything you don't like?
I love the constant challenges that accompany technologies tied to the Internet.  The demands of work are often difficult. Because the Internet is running 24/7, I don't always have the luxury of attending to projects 8 to 5.

Are there any special skills that are helpful to succeed in this field?
Extreme attention to detail is important.  A single mistyped character in a thousand lines of code will render an application unusable.  It is also important to be able translate a client's stated goals into a technological outline and then be able to communicate that back to the client in a manner they can understand.

Do you have any advice for someone who would like to learn more about this field?
Purchase books!  Currently, they are the best source of information.  Because the field is changing so quickly, it is difficult for educational institutions to adapt their programs quickly enough to stay current.

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