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You can start much earlier like my son started at 9. You can figure out your interests without worrying about grade or future job. There is a down side that companies are less likely to hire you without the degree. But, having gotten the first job, it won't matter for the second and you can get the first.
I am self-taught. It can allow you to have some free time, just learning things by testing them. I wanted to mess with the Google Incognito page, so I learned HTML