I learned to type from IRC's and AIM, not from typing classes at school. My first hundred trouble shooting experiences with software came from trying to get games to work on my PC, not from any classes, books or tutorials. My first experience working with hardware was installing a CD-RW into my Gateway mid-tower so that I could burn music from freaking Napster before they went legit and even before Kazaa was around (my FSM I am old).
You may see these activities today for worthless time sinks, which is what they all are on the surface. But we all start off doing things that interest us and some stuff is learned along the way.