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IT Professionals, An Evolutionary Tale Of Technology

IT Professionals

IT Professionals came from somewhere beyond the memory of normal mortals. They are a special breed of person. This is the tale of their evolution. Back in the late 80’s, my mom bought me a computer. Well, she actually bought it for the family, but I used it more often than not.

It was an awesome machine. It was a 286 with a 20 MB hard drive, a floppy drive, a stiffy drive and a VGA screen. Yes, I was the first of my friends to own a colour screen. Man, that was a sweet deal. While my other friends were looking at monochrome screens, I could bask in the sunlight of full colour.

IT Professionals

I was always interested in computers. I was forever tinkering with the stuff and writing small batch files just to see what could be done. A friend of mine from school was more clued up than me when it came to computers. Willem was always coming up with new stuff to try out and screw with. Not surprising that we both became programmers after school.

I guess that it was just in our blood? Well you see, that’s just my point. We didn’t come from an IT background. His dad was a psychologist and my dad was a doctor. How was it that we became the proverbial IT Professionals? Just what are IT Professionals exactly?

In Your Blood

How was it that we both ended up in IT? Well I believe that it is in your blood. You are either born with it or not. If you spend your normal nine to five working in computers, but after that it is sayonara to the bits and bytes until the next day, I would like to say that for you IT is just a job. Something to earn a pay-check and nothing more. There is however a different breed of person that can be found in the lonely hours of the night, faces illuminated by the glow of a computer screen, vamping on technology.


IT Professionals are those rare few that are passionate about their art. I will go as far as to say that if you do not tinker with code or hardware or whatever it is you do, after hours, you will not get better at doing it. I want the tinkerer, the curious, the insatiable thirst for knowledge kind of person on my team. I want that guy or girl writing my software, or configuring my server/router, or analysing my business processes. They come from a long line of knowledge thirsty individuals, many of whom shaped the future because of that thirst. Just have a look at the Infographic below, originally posted by the Microsoft Server and Cloud Platform Team (reference below) on their blog.

What Binds Those Passionate Individuals?

There is a golden thread running through all those true IT Professionals, something that distinguishes us from the rest. It isn’t your qualification or how much money you make. Nor is it your ‘knowledge’ of your specific field of IT.

(By the way, I know a guy called Graham Skeen. He is the most humble man I know. But boy, is he an absolute tour de force when it comes to SQL and mining data, and you would never say that from his attitude. This man is a true IT rock star!)  That golden thread is something we are born with, something nobody can take away from us. That one thing we posses is called passion.

IT Professional Evolution Cloud

Reference: Things you should do to become a top quality programmer, Server & Cloud Blog

Dirk Strauss
Dirk is a Software Developer and Microsoft MVP from South Africa. He loves all things Technology and is slightly addicted to Twitter and Jimi Hendrix. Apart from writing code, he also enjoys writing human readable articles. "I love sharing knowledge and connecting with people from around the world. It's the diversity that makes life so beautiful." Dirk feels very strongly that pizza is simply not complete without Tabasco, that you can never have too much garlic, and that cooking the perfect steak is an art he has yet to master.

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  • Graham Skeen

    Thanks for the mention. I am honoured by your description of myself, but I am just a self-taught hack who was given an opportunity to grow skills when I most needed them.

    Your time-line brought back some memories. I was a teenager when the Commodore 64 came around. We couldn’t afford one back then, so I played games on my friends machine.

    Pin ball was big in the arcades back then, and Pac-man was a game no kid could get enough of. The first desktop I worked on didn’t have its own memory, and booted off a floppy disk. Times were a lot simpler, and solutions a lot less complex.

    • Dirk Strauss

      Hi Graham. Thank you so much for your feedback. I think more young IT guys and gals need role models like you. You have taught me more than you know, just by being who you are. So thank you once again! 🙂

  • Jay Adams

    Dirk++. I like it.

    • Dirk Strauss

      Thank you very much Jay!

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