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5000th post with good news!

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It's very fitting that for my 5000th post (woohoo!), I have good news, and to an appreciable extent, EEVBlog is to thank!

I was out of work for several years due to RSI problems (and pretty significant depression) and struggling to find a new career direction (leaving IT, needing to find something brainy enough for me, yet not totally computer-based like almost everything these days). During that time, I got back into my childhood hobby of electronics, which had mostly gone by the wayside when I got into computers as a teen. I read stuff, I watched Dave's (and others') videos, built up my home lab little by little, experimented and tinkered, and read and wrote on the forums. I learned a lot.

Well, after several years of getting nowhere with the disability office, from whom I wanted assistance finding a new career and getting any necessary retraining, I finally got my legal insurance involved, and suddenly, things were able to happen. (Things I'd been told weren't available. Uh huh.) Once my file landed on the right desk, with a guy who knows technical jobs, I was quickly invited to do a 4-week assessment at a technical training center, to look at the two candidate fields I was interested in: industrial automation and electronics. It went well, and the result is that I've been offered, and have accepted, a 3-year apprenticeship at the training center as an electronics technician, starting in August. In the meantime, I've been working there as the assistant to the electronics instructor, working on some internal projects and helping teach/monitor the “regular” (i.e. teenage) apprentices. (The disability office will pay my wages for all of it.)

So to everyone here, I say thank you! Thanks for the information, the insightful discussions, the food for thought, and for putting up with my bullheadedness. Rekindling my joy and fascination with electronics has finally given me a path forward, which in turn has also really helped me climb out of the dark hole I was in. And I don't think it would have happened if I hadn't had the videos and forum to learn from.

So thanks again to everyone, I really appreciate it, and want you to know that you made a difference.

Congratz ... g'luck and stay healthy.  :-+

I wish you good luck and hope it all works out for you!!

Good news indeed; the first step on a long journey.

I'm sure you realise this, but just as in computing knowledge can be divided into two categories: fundamental and ephemeral. The challenge is to recognise which is which, and act accordingly.

The fundamentals, which can be theoretical and practical, will last you a lifetime. I'm still relying and using stuff I learned 30/40 years ago, applying it to new areas.

The ephemerals, which can also be theoretical and practical, have a half life of 6 months to 3 years. It is worth avoiding learning those except where there is an immediate need.

Classic fundamentals: what a compiler does and what the emitted code looks like, limits (e.g. Byzantine Generals problem, Lamport's temporal logic), the eight fallacies of distributed computing, time-frequency domain equivalence, stability criteria, metastability, schematic/PCB layout, FSMs, different design concepts and when to use/avoid them, how to design so something can be incrementally implemented and tested, and many more.

Classic ephemerals: this year's favourite procedural language, yet another schematic capture and layout package, yet another opamp.

Having said that, I've been very grateful that in my spare time I made sure I kept ahead of at least one strategic change. That's been invaluable when looking for my next job.



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