Originally Posted by idrougge
Interesting, I thought Finkel disappeared out of the picture no later than 1994.
I met several ex-Commodore employees at Amiga Technologies GmbH back then. This was the time when everybody was sort of between jobs, and consulting gigs helped to pay the bills. The Amiga technology was a highly specialized field and those companies who needed your help needed it badly. Not a bad time to be a consultant
That's also interesting. I think most people in this community would have regarded you as a professional programmer already, but what you're saying is that Commodore actually employed professionals and not just semi-professionals.
In product development and engineering, yes, in management, well... not so much after Jack Tramiel quit.
As for "professional programmer", I learned that there can be a world of a difference between programming as a vocation/profession and professional conduct and practices while working as programmer/software developer.
I still believe that developing software is just about the greatest thing ever, but to last in the business, you cannot coast on self-taught practices. You need to learn how to organize your work, how to get better at avoiding mistakes, educate yourself (it helps to have a CS degree, but as contemporary research shows, self-taught software developers tend to be much more productive than those who started with a CS degree and no prior programming experience).
Otherwise you will invariable hit your limits and either burn out or come think that banging your head against the limits is "normal". I met too many programmers in those past 20 years who consider this type of self-inflicted damage the "cost of doing business".