I've been reading articles on coding horror about the things like the fact that a lot of 'programmers' can't actually program and there is evidence that whether or not you can 'get' programming, whether or not it's something that you'll be able to do, is innate. Either you have the ability to be a programmer, or you don't.
I find this incredibly frustrating. I know I have that innate ability. In school we had a computers class, which was mostly just playing with Logo, run by a teacher who also happened to be the career guidance teacher. After that class she said, of me, 'she's a programmer' and told me I should do it for a living. I did Computer Science and Software Engineering in college and loved it. The only thing I could see myself having enjoyed more in college is pure maths. I aced programming and logic courses all the way through. I got a first class honours degree. I left college wanting to write code, wanting to be a computer programmer.
But I tried, and failed, to get a job writing code. I had a few QA jobs that I was told would lead to writing code, but they never did. I was aware that I had a lot to learn. The sort of stuff that you can only learn on the job and/or by doing. I am bad at learning by doing. Not as bad as I was back then, but still bad. If someone is willing to teach me, I am a sponge, I learn easilly and well. But no one was. No one was willing to hire me and teach me the things that my degree didn't and possibly couldn't. I had ability, but I lacked skill.
I know that it's experience coding that counts and that it doesn't have to be in a professional setting. I know that getting involved with an open source project and writing good code there, or just writing something myself and getting it out there, could lead to a programming job. But I never seem to have the time, or the energy, or the brain space to do it. Probably the most frustrating thing about this is knowing that I could fix it, but I haven't. I know it's not reasonable or fair to expect to have a coding job served up to me on a plate. But it's still frustrating that there are people out there programming badly for a living, when I'm so sure I could do it well. And, well, see the title of this post.