So you want a Linux job do you? Well, according to The Linux Foundation, the jobs are out there. Specifically, Linux jobs are divided up almost evenly between developer, 53% and system administrator. 47%, jobs.
Amanda McPherson, the Linux Foundation's vice president of marketing and developer programs, told me, "The Linux jobs market is booming, and we're doing a variety of things to understand what skills are most in demand and how we can help address that opportunity for our corporate and individual members and with things like our Linux Training courses. The data we've surfaced from our Jobs Board really reflects the importance of common programming languages, as well as areas of great success for Linux--such as Android. Mobile and embedded development skills are extremely valuable in today's market. If you can work on security, power management and integration at the device level, you're well prepared for this burgeoning area of Linux development."
In particular, Android, and Java, the language that goes with it, is in enormous demand. A quick hunt for Android jobs reveals over 10,000 jobs and contracts currently available. Besides Android dominating the smartphone market the explosive rise of affordable Android-Linux powered tablets such as the Amazon Kindle Fire and the Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet, is going to make certain that Android skills are going to be red-hot in the 2012 job market.
As for the system administration side, while the Linux Foundation didn't get deeply into exactly what people are looking for, I did some digging of my own and I didn't find any surprises. If you want a job as a system administrator and you're still wet behind the ears with Linux, you need to start with a Linux Professional Institute's entry-level LPIC certifications. What you'll really want though is a Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA) or, better still, a Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) certification to your credit. Experience, though, as always, trumps certification.
So where are these jobs? Well, The Linux Foundation's job site is U.S-centric so most of them "appear" to be in the U.S. I doubt that's really the case. Personally, I know that both the U.K. and German Linux job markets are hot. Within the U.S., the top states are Georgia: 12%; California: 11%; Texas: 9%; and Illinois: 9%.
To me, the way these jobs are scattered about the country also says something else: You don't need to be in Silicon Valley or some other traditional high-tech hot spot to get a Linux job. Linux work is everywhere, and in an economy likes ours, that's a welcome ray of good news.
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