Is leaving out experience or dates in order to hide one's age
acceptable in the software industry?
Been there, done that (on both sides of the hiring process).
It's a perfectly normal tactic to scrub your resume and remove all traces of age.
- Include only the past 10 years or so of experience
- Remove dates from education items and anything else that doesn't require dates
- Remove any outdated/obsolete technologies or anything else that would say "old"
- Try to include and highlight any new technologies and processes in which you are experienced
- In your cover letter, say "experienced" rather than something like "35 years experience"
That might help you get more interviews.
Make sure you keep yourself up to date on newer technologies and processes. Take courses and/or participate in open source projects if needed. Make sure you know, and can use, current buzzwords while avoiding older terms.
Consider companies and roles where age may not be a hindrance. For example, often management is expected to be on the older side. Some development-related roles tend to skew older that roles for pure coders.
Network with friends near your age who can give you an idea which companies might be hiring folks with your "depth of experience".
More tips: https://www.google.com/#q=avoiding+ageism+on+your+resume
I've had headhunters say it's a bad idea