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Two days ago, I was invited by Universiti Tun Hussein Onn (UTHM) student to give a talk on their 1 day seminar for the students in the Computer Science and Information Technology (FSKTM) faculty. Thinking that this is a good chance to connect with the students, I'd agreed and went there with a friend from JomWeb Johor, a community of web developers in Johor Bahru.

I was not fully prepare, due to short notice I got but I try my best to share something that I have learnt throughout my careers in this industry. The title of my talk was 'Menjana Pengalaman Melalui OSS Development', loosely translated as 'Building Experiences through OSS Development'.

Throughout the two and half hours talk, I try to give some insight to the student on how to solve the most common dilemma of any fresh graduate (not just in IT) that is - the requirement for x years of experiences that the industry need. We in IT however are quite lucky that the same dilemma not necessarily applied to us, if we know how to get around that.

After the talk, we continued with a forum session joined by 4 other speakers invited by the organizer. The 4 talk basically run in parallel in separate rooms, so it quite a miss that I can't listen to the other sessions. The issues raised in the forum are quite common - is student prepared as expected by industry, what else can university can do to equip student, salary, what technologies having the brightest future etc. But there's one question from a student that I think, caught everyone in surprise.

This student, basically already spent 4 years in the industry before deciding to back into university to further his study. He said that he feel's trapped into his job and passion in programming, not having a quality life anymore. This is something to ponder I think. Unfortunately I didn't (other panels as well) has clear answer for him.

Kamal Mustafa

Kamal Mustafa


Joined December 2010. Have been doing web development since early 2000 with classic ASP, then moved on to PHP and finally involved with Python/Django since joining Xoxzo Inc. During his spare time Kamal hacks various open source projects at github.