I am 40 years old. Is it too late to start a career in software development?

I am 40 years old. Is it too late to start a career in software development?


Maybe there should be more companies made of older people where the prerequisite is to have the drive to come along and still being able to push themselves to the next level. Join that the experience of half a life and it should add up too something


Not too late. I’m 47. The way I see it may look like a contradiction but hear me out.

The saying “Life is short” is definitely true. Time spent not caring, time spent worrying, time spent on passive entertainment , time lost on fruitful and unfulfilling work, That adds up

But what appears to be the opposite “Life is long” is also 100% true. There is time.Don’t waste it.



I’m 43. Trying for a few years now. On and off.
Always insecure of my age and talent to learn this. Still trying though! I can’t seem to loose the feeling:grinning:
I’ve always wanted to learn but the bills need to be paid so I have been in a job that I don’t like for far to long.
So i’m gonna keep going. First time I’m doing this via Free Code Camp. Enjoying so far.


Hi Jay,

I’m very nearly in the same boat at just under 40, and it’s time for a change! If you have a passion for computers and drive to complete the course, why not!? Go get 'em! I am also encouraged by the number of career switchers who are finding success. In the education field, it’s becoming more common to see career switchers as well. People are more willing to pursue their dreams and make things happen, aren’t they. :slight_smile:


Very good video answering your question by a high achiever, guy I like watching:


I am 44 years old and this thread has definitely given me hope!


TOTALLY agree with everything you mention. Older junior devs will bring past-career experiences that enhance teams. That’s what I’m going to be banking on when I start interviewing for my first gig.


Hi Jay,

I’m 54, our ages is never old, but mature. Keep on Coding and never give up to negative advice.
Coding is our future for the young and mature…:slight_smile:



Talk about the power of diversity!


Is it too late to be happy?


Glad you agree. See my story about this in Medium, which seems to have encouraged a lot of older (and not so old) newbie coders:


I don’t think it’s too old. I sure hope not as I’ve got a couple years on you. :slight_smile:


Chuck, you nailed it.

I am an unborn babe (former corporate lawyer / features journalist) with no programing background.

Since my move to Germany this February, I also started learning German apart from coding and am now reading extensively The Pony Express in German understanding half of it. Coding comes slower for me, what a struggle to do both.

I.ve asked stupid questions in Gitter after searching hard for answers but I feel so alive and young again. Am only 44 going on 35. :joy:

Best of all, I love the coding community and am very grateful for your help.


As long as you are willing to learn, I don’t think there is anything stopping you from becoming a developer :slight_smile:


You can never be too old.


Hi Rick, the chat room link is broken, could you post again? I am glad that all of us has same faith


I think we could show employer we have sufficient responsibility that some young people may not have, and we put much effort on our work to impress employer.


I’m so glad you asked the question. Pretty similar to me–turning 40 this year, thinking about switching from music. I’m currently teaching music in higher ed, which was always the dream, but I’ve been stuck in the rat race of non-tenure track land. Something about having a new baby a year and half ago made me realize that I want to work a little less so that I can spend more time with her, and make a little more money to prepare for her and our future. Plus, I’ve been doing FCC for about a year and I really love learning these new skills. Chipping away at it little by little, I finished the front end certificate, and I’m working my way through data visualization.

I’ve often thought that there are a lot of similarities between playing music and writing code. Musicians are used to practicing and making progress little by little over a long period of time. Also, the idea of constantly learning and improving seems pretty natural coming from music. I don’t think I’d ever give up music, but it’s become more clear to me that it doesn’t have to be my main source of income. (I did my tribute page on Charles Ives).

Anyway, best of luck to you and to all the 40+ developers out there. Seems like it’s a big group!


It’s never too late. I’ve seen people leave fields to come into development even later than you, coming from academia, neurology, and nuclear engineering. I work with a lot of people who are “switchers” later in the career where I work.

I’m not new to programming, but I’m also in my 40’s. So you’re not alone here.


Hey @animatist I am sorry that I have to say that the “powers that be” decided the 40+ programmer demographic chat room was not useful or popular enough to exist and it was shut down. I was and remain pretty upset about that and I have given up on using FCC Gitter because of it.