10 Years in the Life of a Software Engineer #10yearchallenge


Year 0 I graduated with a degree in computer science I was just a normal kid, wondering what it meant to be cool I joined programming competitions. I had done internships as Sun Microsystems and Microsoft Year 1 I get my first job as Sony Pictures in Hollywood 75k Pretty good. I worked on a 3d graphics visualization tool for movie special effects like spider-man I’d go to movie premieres, concerts, anime expose, car drift shows and the trendy company parties. In my spare time, I build silly websites using a funny language – PHP that I had taught myself Most apps were pretty bad but fun Eventually, I started working on a dating app I named Connections It wasn’t growing So I added a virtual economy and renamed it Human Pets The app goes viral generating $300 per day in ad revenue At first I thought it would just be fun dinner money, but it became more I started spending my evenings and weekends building out the website Handling server crashes as the app generates $2,000 a day If I had worked all night. I would need to take the next day off work I loved the work but it wasn’t really a choice for me I just didn’t have time for both and by the end of the year, I quit my job Year 2 For my birthday, I get myself a one-way ticket to London I figured I could work from anywhere in the world and since they speak English there, It’d be a good base. But I’m disappointed by the city. It’s all business and noisy pubs I can’t find Wi-Fi. So I spend most of the days working out of the Apple store, standing on my feet. I visited France and Italy too. stopping by Paris, Florence, Rome Mid-year, I returned home and began working on the new app idea A series of web-based RPG games and it goes viral, generating 5k a day Single offered to acquired for 500k but I reject the offer Perhaps foolishly because if I had taken the offer Well Zynga later goes on to IPO But regardless I take off for Hawaii for 3 weeks where I work from hotel lobbies teaching myself windsurfing every other day I celebrate Christmas aboard a cruise ship in the Caribbean. It sounds all fun. But I was fairly stressed throughout it all Year 3 Began as I get into stock trading and technical analysis I needed to learn how to invest my commodities traits go well and I am up 70% This year for my birthday, I gifted myself an extended trip back to Japan It’s the first time I go back since having studied abroad 9 years ago I couldn’t believe I had let so much time pass I was at Kyoto and Miyajima with a side trip to Hong Kong I’d continue to work on bringing my apps to other platforms like Twitter while adding new features However, my projects failed to gain traction and I find myself returning home. I joined the web gaming startup and that Christmas I buy myself a DSLR camera with my new income Year 4 Began as I quit my job once more My brother and I co-founded an LLC to build a portfolio of apps and games We named it Avalanche Borrowed from the rebellion group named in Final Fantasy 7 Our game gains popularity and soon I leave for New York. I wanted to better understand such an iconic city, and I wanted to be on the same time zone as Wall Street, too So that I could trade properly But New York was so hot and humid in the summer It lost its appeal to me after six months.
I gave it up and I went home. I decided to start a new job at a start-up
where my sister was working. So it was fun to see her every day. I celebrated Christmas at home that year Year 5 begins in Japan again I had learned motorcycling and pre-ordered a Ducati
to remember the craziness of last year But at the last minute, I canceled the order Quit my job at the failing startup
and returned to Japan instead Unlike previously, I had more assets this time to enjoy the travel and I figured it would be a different experience for my birthday, I go to Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia in search of Angkor Wat It is fantastic In March, I visited Taiwan for three weeks getting to finally know my cousins The Fukushima nuclear disaster occurs then and I abandoned my flight back to Japan Instead returning home to California again With the regrets of New York from
the prior years still in my head. I revisit the city with determination this time I get a nicer apartment with a window desk so that I could actually work However few of the apps succeeded like before Meanwhile, I’d heard of a European backpacking route So in September, I sublet out in my room
and book a one-way ticket to Switzerland It is the most fun I’ve had in years
and I met so many people The route takes me through Italy into the Cote d Azur,
through southern Spain Before I grew tired of seeing museums
and my feet grew blisters By winter I visited Kauai, Hawaii
and make my first video as a test In December, I obtain high-end DSLR video cameras
and returned to Japan to film Tokyo and Kyoto These would be the start of
my video channel – BlueEden This year I had launched a number of web projects,
but none really worked out Year 6 begins as I returned to New York
to reclaim my apartment I stayed until the end of the lease
and then return to California. I preferred the casual tech culture of Silicon Valley I asked myself what I wanted and I thought 150 K would be my number So I applied to Groupon and tell them what I want and they agreed So I take up a position as a web developer
and live in San Francisco Several months in though the product bored me and the commute from San Francisco
to the office in Palo Alto was absolutely brutal so I quit and took a break Spending the rest of the year filming
time-lapse videos of the British Virgin Islands and the Utah Grand Circle I was driven by the idea of youth, health, time and money and I wanted to maximize them while I had it After that, I wasn’t sure what to do anymore But thought I’d go back to Japan to visit my brother and I celebrated Christmas there Year 7 begins in Japan, where I meet a girl she catches my attention and I decided to extend my stay a little bit longer With my photography knowledge I also began development on a new software program which would become Panolapse – a software for time-lapses that would turn out to become a success Meanwhile, I had struck a sponsorship with a selling company based on a prior video in the British Virgin Islands And they wanted me to do another one in the Bahamas. I I bring my girlfriend back to California and we go film in the Bahamas In July, we continued to film in Alaska In August, Yellowstone and in September Maui by the end of the year We returned back to Japan
where we spent time living in Tokyo, Yokohama, Osaka and Kyoto I returned home for Christmas Year 8 begins back in California I buy a MacBook as a late Christmas gift for myself And I also buy an engagement ring. I invite my girlfriend to California
where we take a trip to Las Vegas In February, we visit Iceland for my birthday,
but there I also propose under the aurora and she said yes In April, we visit Japan again and
make a side trip to the tropical island of Guam During that time, I also began work on iOS apps and bringing Elven Blood onto the iOS platform It is a small success and I bring my fiancee to the US with a spousal visa Meanwhile, I began applying to jobs
and land a position at the Google We celebrate our bright future in Disneyland In year 9, we hold a marriage ceremony in Thailand where again, we have a sailboat
with sponsorship from the selling company We honeymoon the next month in Hawaii By October we get a puppy Sonny
and my wife gets pregnant Sensing that I won’t be traveling for a long time I get a Playstation for Christmas In year 10, my wife gives birth to our son With a baby, a puppy and a full-time job I finally settle down and get to work Taking on my mental as the TechLead

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