Three paths to an Internet career

By John Kador, InfoWorld |  Career

The OS is at the very heart of every business application. A developer with good
skills working with the hottest operating systems can write his or her own ticket. The
trouble is predicting which OS will emerge to be successful in the market. For
instance, more than one developer bet his or her career on IBM's OS2 and lost.

Most evidence points to a consolidation of operating systems. Businesses do not
want the complexity of supporting multiple operating systems. These days, the smart
money and many professionals believe that Unix and Windows 2000 will emerge as the de
facto business operating systems.

Not all Internet infrastructure professionals want to play it safe. A gutsy career
move would be to focus on Linux, an open-source variant of Unix. Whether Fortune 1000
organizations will make big bets on the free OS remains to be seen. Nevertheless, a
critical mass of smaller organizations have embraced Linux. Career opportunities exist
in the Linux environment.

Applications over systems software

This software infrastructure category also can be segmented by systems software and
applications software jobs. Opportunities with applications software have the edge over
systems software for the simple reason that systems software will become increasingly
commoditized. Nevertheless, there is much life left in a career developing systems
software for Web-based applications.

Enterprisewide computing opps

With the complexity of enterprisewide computing comes increasing demands in areas
such as data security, capacity planning, asset management, performance measurement,
and storage managementt. Internet growth has created upward pressure on many
organizations to beef up their systems support areas. Most of these organizations will
find the cost of managing all their systems software is unsustainable. The software
solutions focused on this area -- a class of products called enterprise systems
management -- are career gold to those with the right Web skill sets.


The business of e-business is business

Businesses create and sustain Internet jobs. E-business, after all is said and
done, is simply business by another name. The result is an insatiable demand for
business-and tech-savvy people who can apply their highly evolved skill sets on the

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