I know, I know, you read a ton of these types of articles with everybody trying to predict what will happen in 2018. How is this any different? Well, if you are looking for a new career in tech and you have the ambition to learn, one of these 5 career choices is what I recommend you focus on. It will have the best rate of return for your time invested.
You will get step by step instructions on how to get started with each one of them. Why should you listen to me? I’ve been in the tech industry for many years and I’ve written a few popular posts on medium related to technology this, this and this. Most importantly, I pride myself on spotting trends. But who cares about me. Let’s talk about you and your career choices in 2018.
The criteria for the selection is simple:
1. It must be a highly in demand skill that will allow you to get paid a high salary and pick which company you want to work for if you have the right skills.
2. It must be growing faster than the number of skilled workers so that the job market doesn’t get saturated.
3. It must be international and needed all around the world.
4. It must be a skill that is able to be picked up without going to school or bootcamp which makes you pay a ton of money for a diploma.
5. It must be a skill useful many years into the future.
That last point is a tricky one. Everyone thinks they have an idea of what the future will hold, but let’s be honest… that is rarely the case. So I have organized the list from most risky to least risky in this article.
Important thing to note: There is never a magic bullet. If you want to be successful then you have to work hard for it, and no course or book can help you 100% accomplish what you want without any effort. If it was easy everyone would be doing it. The outline provides the 20% guidance. The rest is all up to your determination and effort.
Let’s dive in shall we? By the way, I don’t have any affiliate links. Just things that I recommend. If you have your own recommendations, do share in the comments.
1. Cryptocurrency Investor
Oh boy, who isn’t investing in cryptocurrency these days? It’s the new hot topic of the year. There are people who have made a lot of money investing in cryptocurrency, and a lot of people who have lost money. However, the market here is fairly young and you have potential to make a really high return on your investment if you have some technical knowledge and you follow the market daily. Although there are a lot of scams out there, the technology is real and some of the top minds are working in the field so it is here to stay.
This is extremely risky, and I would personally not want to be a full time crypto investor. However, if you have high risk tolerance, here is what you need to do:
1. Read Crypto Assets.
2. Read Bitcoin white paper
3. Read Ethereum yellow paper
4. Start reading cryptopanic daily
5. Be able to build a simple blockchain data structure yourself
6. Use Crypto-sheets
8. Open 2 exchange accounts: 1 for converting your local currency to bitcoin or ethereum, and another to trade ethereum or bitcoin into other coins (alt coins).
10. Pray that you don’t lose all your money and instead get seen as a guru investor.
Bonus: Read all of the guides here.
Remember: Don’t ever invest more than you are willing to lose.
2. Blockchain Developer
This is another interesting field that will be growing like crazy this year. With platforms like Ethereum taking the lead, more and more companies need developers who understand the blockchain, smart contracts, and can build decentralized applications. The market is still young and good developers are rare, so if you are able to become skilled in this area, the sky is the limit.
The only downside is that the technology is moving really fast and things are constantly changing so you will have to be on top of the changes to stay relevant. Here is what you should do to get started in this career:
2. Learn about Peer to Peer Networking
3. Learn some Node.js basics
5. Learn about Public Key Cryptography
8. Learn about Ethereum: Ethereum white paper , Ethereum yellow paper, Ethereum Virtual Machine, Ethereum Development Roadmap, Proof of Work vs Proof of Stake, and Reading State vs Changing State on the Ethereum blockchain.
11. Learn about ABI (Application Binary Interface)
13. Deploy your DAPP and smart contract on the Ethereum Main Network
Is your head spinning yet? If you want a course to make life easier, one of the best instructors (Stephen Grider) has just released a course that you may find useful:
3. Machine Learning Engineer
This is another hot topic but probably one of the hardest to pick up on this list. You will most likely need some technical knowledge prior to be able to start into this field. Although we are very far away from artificial general intelligence, over the coming year, this field will produce drastic changes into out lives.
1. First off, learn Python programming language.
2. Start watching Siraj on youtube
3. Read this series of articles on Medium
4. Start working with a machine learning API like Clarifai and build a simple application.
5. Learn about 2017 advancements in Machine Learning
6. Start using Jupyter
7. Start building your own models
With a complex topic like this, you will need good courses to expand on the above list. I recommend the two below:
Learn how to use NumPy, Pandas, Seaborn , Matplotlib , Plotly , Scikit-Learn , Machine Learning, Tensorflow , and more!www.udemy.com
Learn to create Machine Learning Algorithms in Python and R from two Data Science experts. Code templates included.www.udemy.com
4. Software Developer
This is a massive industry and one of the safest bets that won’t be going away anytime soon, as it is in demand all over the world. We are surrounded by software and this is becoming more and more pronounced every year. It is my chosen profession and I believe in its future strongly.
It is also the field that will allow you to gain fundamental technical knowledge so you can jump onto new trending technologies like crypto investing, machine learning, blockchain development, or any upcoming future tech trends, and not feel overwhelmed.
5. Educators who can explain complex topics
We are living in an ever growing world where technology is part of everything around us. The pace that new findings, new methods, and new advancements are being discovered is outpacing the amount that we can individually learn. More and more people are becoming specialized in their field because there is so much to depth and so much information of the collective human mind.
With the increase in quantity and pace of information, the quality of resources has diminished. In 2018 and beyond, there will be a greater and greater need for instructors who can teach complex topics to a beginner. Why is this hard? Education is notoriously difficult. People have different level abilities and different learning styles. Technology is also moving so fast, you also need to keep your education material current. The most difficult, however, is that as you become an expert, you forget what it is like to be a beginner and you assume that people know what you know. The people who can emphasize and explain things to someone with zero knowledge will provide great value to the world. I am still a beginner at this and I look forward to focusing on this skill in 2018.
If you love teaching, this is something that is really hard to perfect in the technology field, but can have great financial rewards, as well as intangible rewards like helping others succeed in their career.
The people who can do that and provide efficient learning by not overwhelming students will find great career options. Read 1000 true fans by Kevin Kelly if you don’t believe me.
Remember, being successful has a simple recipe: Create more value than you capture.
Good luck out there. It’s messy in the vast sea of information, but for those who persevere, work hard, and stick to learning a skill, the rewards can be great.
What are you going to do today that other people won’t, so you can do tomorrow what other people can’t ?— unknown
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Akin is the author of the book "THE INTERNET: a town square for the global village.
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