IS (Information Services) is easy (you can pick it up at any junior college) – but Software Development is hard. You can learn it on your own (if you are born with a mind that works that way) – but staying ahead of the game is hard work – and you constantly have to learn the latest skills. The pay, however, can be sensational.
Plenty of people don’t know the difference. And the colleges are not in any hurry to inform them.
Once, when I was working in Silicon Valley in the Nineties, when I was on a vacation in the scenic mountains of California – I met a young couple who were on their way back to where I had come from. And they were happy! The husband had learned IS, and they were on their way to make their fortune in the Valley. A fortune, I am sure, that never happened.
I also knew a relative of mine, the daughter of a cousin – who also tried to make her fortune in IS in the Valley. She went from a one temporary job to a another temporary job, but could never get hired. She went back home to her mother, who lived in the DC area – and tried to become a bartender! When I later asked her mother about this – she just said “She got married!” and changed the subject. The young of our time do not have it easy.
I continue to learn the Java programming language. Oracle, which is in charge of Java, provides excellent lessons – for free. All I have to do invest my time – which I have plenty of.