Issue #202, January 7, 2000  
 
 
 

To Fill Jobs In High Tech, Try A Fight Song

By Stephen Lawton
          I was thinking about the shortage of workers in Silicon Valley and decided there must be a way to make technology more...commercial...so it draws more workers. The business certainly has enough money; people are becoming millionaires daily. Even companies that never saw a dollar of profit, like e-Toys.com, have significantly higher market valuation than traditional bricks-and-mortar superstores like Toys "R" Us.
          Recently, I read a story about a high school student who called a news conference. He was announcing he was going to attend St. Paul University to play basketball. I thought it was bizarre that a high school student would call a news conference to announce a college choice. After all, we all know that college is for learning and students never would get any inappropriate financial advantage from going to one school or another. (And if you believe that, I have a perpetual motion machine to show you.)
          Then it hit me. It's not that technology doesn't pay. It's not that it's dull. You don't even have to live in some one-horse town to do the job - although if you like cows, Gateway has openings. What Silicon Valley and the Digital Coast need are fight songs.
          I think we should take a page out of Georgia Tech's book and start promoting engineering and the Web the right way. Who wouldn't want to be "a rambling wreck from Georgia Tech and a hell of an engineer?" (Well, maybe not a Georgia Bulldog.)
          Who cares if you fight on for USC? How about "Fight On for Ol' Yahoo!"? Forget Notre Dame. Consider instead: "Cheer, Cheer for Old Emulex!" The possibilities are staggering.
          You might soon see middle-school students announce they will go to certain high schools because they have better engineering classes. Imagine the headlines: "Berkeley Booster Busted, Slips Chips To DIMM Wit." Incidentally, what is the penalty for illegal gifts of freeware Linux applications?
          Of course, once you get the universities involved, the next step will be corporate sponsorships. How about the 2001 Engineering Student Draft? Imagine the spectacles: the Daemon Bowl sponsored by Sun; the Big Iron Bowl powered by IBM; the Fruit Bowl sponsored by Apple; the Accessory Bowl organized by Belkin Components; and, of course, the Monopoly Bowl, co-sponsored by Microsoft and Parker Brothers. I can't wait. I want a front-row seat.
          MicroTimes firmly supports a Silicon Valley and Digital Coast fight song, so we're having a contest. Go to MicroTimes.com, sign up for the
e-Newsletter and submit your lyrics in the Comments section. Not only will you get a newsletter twice a month, you'll also get a chance to have your lyrics printed in MicroTimes.com's Web edition. The winner, who will be chosen at random from those submitting lyrics, will win a $100 Savings Bond.
          One entry per person please, but you can enter as many songs as you'd like.

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