13

Simple answer: nope. I know this because I've made open source software and I don't have a degree. The degree isn't required because the knowledge of programming required to make software doesn't change between proprietary and open source software. You still need to able to write good working code, and that doesn't require a degree - you can teach yourself. ...


12

Historically, many people have become professionals in coding without benefit of a degree, your perception of the California job market notwithstanding. A CEO whom I know well, amongst many others of my middle-aged peers, is an example. When I hire people, I put a lot of emphasis on 'portfolio', and I know that I'm not alone. Open source is certainly ...


10

First: nice question! Degrees are looked upon as a fairly standardised measure of your ability in the subject you study. Employers look for them because they indicate (in theory) that this person is capable of doing the job they claim they can do. In today's fast-moving world, where you need this new hire last week, they're useful in being able to say "this ...


8

The open source community is largely meritocratic. When you provide a patch for an open source project, nobody will ask you for your references or academic qualifications. Many open source projects would not even want to know your real name, unless they need you to sign a CLA. Your contribution will only be judged on its own merit. This makes open source a ...


3

Working on open source does give several benefits In a large(ish) project, you are working shoulder to shoulder with professionals, doing professional work. You'll learn how to use a suite of tools, and to work in structured relationship with coworkers (in open source, often you never even meet the colleagues). This is training that you'd otherwise acquire ...


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