I have now been rejected on 5 jobs asking for mappers on the pure basis that I am a programmer. I don't get interviews and when I ask I get response of "You are a programmer and we wanted a mapper with programming experience".
I have my basics, I can use ArcMap, configure ArcSDE, understand coordinate systems. I have experience writing ESRI add-in code in ArcMap and direct code accessing the server without ArcMap. I understand how the spatial type is implemented and know how to create a matching UDT in accordance to OGC. I am familiar with the basic spatial operations.
I know that I am missing some things (possibly a lot of things), but nobody wants to tell me what they are. So please tell me. Please assume some generality, I want to know what most programmers lack when compared to mappers, just listed my case to prove motive.
Note: Open source GIS is coming next.