I am not much of a hobby kind of guy and because I feel its waste of time as there is no value addition. In time I developed some computer programming skills. As part of my research work I have to write many computer programs for analyzing data, processing images etc. I enjoyed it a lot and don’t feel the work labor while doing it. Recently I discovered this concept of online freelancing. And I just knew that I found myself a hobby 🙂
There are some websites like http://www.elance.com and http://www.odesk.com that brings the contractors and the clients from all over the world closer. Most of the clients are from the developed western countries who have something to get done quickly and it just requires a normal PC with some software to do this job. These jobs are not important and worth enough to hire somebody on a payroll but these often require high skill and education levels which is difficult to find in developed countries at low cost. On the other hand, because of sheer competition among people in developing countries, there is a huge workforce with good skill set and education level available at low cost. These includes students and working professionals with some free time like weekends and evenings. I fall into the second category.
Online freelancing websites is a perfect platform to close the gap between the developed and developing countries. It is a modern day version of the famous outsourcing concept started by big companies like Infosys, Wipro, TCS etc. in the IT world. But this is much more interesting than the outsourcing and the good thing is that there no middle men involved. The client and contractors are free to interact and I have seen many people getting long term clients which will then work for full time later with each other.
I started my online freelancing account in June~July 2012 and I was not much ambitious about it. Anyways, I got my first job assignment in October 2012 and there has been no turning back since then. I mostly work on image processing jobs on Matlab, opencv+visual studio platforms. So far I have worked on 13 jobs for 9 clients and I still am getting new jobs every week. I believe that in the age of recessions and laying offs this is a perfect way to keep oneself upgraded and most importantly working and earning.