Mac admins: if you haven’t already, read Anthony’s article here:
His well-written, well-researched thoughts inspired some thoughts of my own.
It occurs to me that many of the “first” generation of Mac admins came from no-traditional backgrounds. This makes a bit of sense, since the Mac appealed to a new set of computer users.
My college degree was in Theater. I know many Mac admins who were (or are) musicians. Many many Mac admins come from Liberal Arts backgrounds or no college at all.
It’s far more common for “newer” Mac admins to come from more “traditional” backgrounds: they’ve studied computer science or software development.
Anecdotally, it seems to me that many of us who’ve come to this from non-traditional backgrounds are here for the long haul. One might speculate as to the reasons, but the fact remains that some of use have been doing this for _decades_.
It’s fantastic that we’re getting more people with deeper technical experience into the field — it’s what’s needed for the field to become more professional. Concepts like DevOps and Configuration Management and Version Control come from CompSci/Software development.
But: it also seems to me that admins coming from CompSci/software development backgrounds are far less likely to stay in the field long term. They are far more likely to move on to other things (bigger and better?!)
This, then, possibly presents another challenge for the community. Yes, we are starting to see a generational change, but we’re going to see faster “churn” overall.
We’re going to see new admins contribute exciting new things, but we’re also going to see those admins not stick around as long to shepherd what they’ve contributed.
Just as Anthony doesn’t really have any answers on how the community should deal with the generational change, I also don’t (yet at least) have any real suggestions on how the community should adapt to faster “churn”.
I do hope, however, that the community will take this opportunity to start talking about the changes and what can be done.