The NYTimes today discusses why bright engineering students are leaving the major to move to business even if they love science. It’s the jobs, stupid (to paraphrase James Carville). “U.S. graduates probably shouldn’t think of computer programming or chemical engineering as long-term careers” since “The erosion of ”deep code” and other technology jobs in the next decade is creating a high-stakes game of musical chairs for geeks, Silicon Valley recruiters say”. Sounds pretty gloomy.
Where do we go from here? If you are totally committed to a technology career (because you’ve already got your degree or career in it, or you have it as a calling), you’ve got to think smarter. As William Jolitz said last week in his article Misplaced Software Priorities in Cnet:
” We are in danger of losing out in the best and most interesting part of the software market. I’m referring to the development of high-level components such as user interfaces. These deserve our attention because they increase the value of what we can do with technology. Instead, we’re continually re-creating the same low-level infrastructure.”
The big win here would be to kick software innovation into high gear by clearing the decks to focus the innovation segment on the “race to the top” (as Thomas Friedman of The New York Times has put it). People with big dollars then can take big risks for big opportunities.”
So as the motto goes, “Live free or die”.