From Automotive to Web Development

Mihai Onofrei
January 19 5 min read
Join the Web Side

Hello, fellow developers! This is the story of how I went from automotive to web development. If you are like me and your current domain is not satisfying you anymore the following article might give you a boost to make the change. But be careful not to choke on your aspirations’.

First things first. Why did I want to do this?

I have to admit, the automotive industry is really fascinating. You can add your personal touch in implementing the cars of the future and there’s always an immense satisfaction when you see on the roads the cars you worked on.

But wait, why did I leave then?

I am a programmer and I am really passionate about writing code and all sorts of algorithms. The industry has evolved. Every company needs to develop new cars faster to keep up with the competition. Because of this, all sorts of tools to configure code instead of writing it are now available on the market. Of course, if you are part of the companies that provide these tools then you are lucky. I’m not saying that this is a bad thing, I’m saying it wasn’t for me.

How did I manage to make the change?

I have a degree in Electronics, so do not expect that much versatility in the programming languages I learned while in college. In the years I was an embedded developer I was ‘lucky enough’ to have a good exposure to Python and I took advantage of this. I tried to use it as much as possible, automating every task that was on my path. 

  • Do I have to do this thing twice? Then automate, automate, automate.
  • Was it useless sometimes? Yes it was.
  • Was it worth it? Definitely.

But this was not enough. To be able to implement web applications you need to do more than just standalone scripts. The key to this – lots of personal projects and practice. Udemy was also my friend. You can find some really good tutorials there that will help you up your skills. This was just an example,  the Internet is full of valuable resources that make learning new things challenging and super fun.

Joining Bytex – from automotive to web development

A few months later I had an interview with Bytex and voilà – I became a backend developer. Was it luck? ‘In my experience there is no such thing as luck.’

I was no senior of course but I did everything to keep up with the pace. That’s what passion means to me. Do everything to do what you love and ‘May the Force be with you!’.

Do I miss anything?

There is a lot of document writing in the automotive industry due to the safety regulations and, in all honesty, I really hated writing those. But guess what – I sometimes miss it. There comes a time when you have to stop coding and start writing a design. Trust me, this will help you see the bigger and the better picture; the project might enforce it already but if it’s not then it’s up to you to do this. It will save you from a lot of refactoring and bugfixes. 

Would I do this again?

Yes, 100%. This road from automotive to web development taught me that you must fight for the things you love. There’s nothing that can’t be accomplished with the right amount of effort.

There is no point in denying yourself a change of career path if your passion drifts away, and the sooner you start to put in the effort, the faster you’ll catch up with your new career interest.

Don’t be afraid to be a Padawan, changes like the one from automotive to web development are super thrilling!