A Canvas for Thought

September 23, 2007

Craigslist Software Jobs: Canada vs. San Francisco

Filed under: perspectives,wild speculation — vednis @ 11:57 am

I recently checked out the Canadian Craigslist scene after reading some recent posts by Guy Kawasaki.  I’ve heard that Craigslist is big in the San Francisco Bay area, but how is it catching on in Canada’s largest cities?  I devised a small survey to compare the regions, and wow, what a difference.

I compared Canada’s largest city, Toronto, and the surrounding area (known as the GTA), to the San Francisco Bay area.  I also threw in Montreal, Vancouver, and their surrounding areas.  I looked at some of my software specialities, including the Python programming language and Linux, and at some general Web2.0 activity indicators.

As searched on Sept. 23rd, 2007:

S.F. Bay GTA Vancouver Montreal
Population (2006) 7 million 5.5 million 2.1 million 3.6 million
Python in Jobs 386 27 23 16
Linux in Jobs 1157 247 244 75
Ruby in Jobs 259 31 55 6
Python in Gigs 14 0 0 0
Ruby in Gigs 41 0 0 0
AJAX in Jobs 577 222 121 41
Developer in Jobs 1206 772 456 141
Software Engineer in Jobs 1458 98 99 26
Programmer in Jobs 269 234 169 80
Startup in Software Jobs 234 10 4 4
Startup in Internet Engineering Jobs 179 4 1 4

heri noted in the comments that the Montréal numbers are irrelevant, because most job postings will be in French.

Some interesting observations:

  • Why does everyone in S.F. want a Software Engineer, but in Toronto they only want Developers?
  • I have heard that the Linux scene in Toronto is pretty dead.  Answer: yep.
  • I have heard that Vancouver is a bigger tech hub, per capita, than Toronto: perhaps, going by the Cutting Edge Indicators (Ruby, Open Source/Linux, startups, and overall Craigslist usage).

Do keep in mind that this is just a survey, and unscientific in every way.  But do feel free to have fun with the numbers, and draw your own conclusions.

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July 18, 2007

Facebook: the ultimate P2P darknet enabler?

Filed under: ideas,wild speculation — vednis @ 6:16 am

Could Facebook be used as the catalyst for a new generation of Peer-to-Peer darknet applications?

Briefly, a darknet is a private virtual network where users only connect to people they trust.  This is very similar to the networks that Facebook builds. Trust is the key.  You connect to close friends and relatives, giving them access to personal content not privy to your larger network as a whole.

Facebook could become an enabler for these networks, in that it provides a common point in the network through which you may connect with those trusted people.  Not directly, but via Facebook’s new applications interface, or via exisiting network tools that Facebook supports directly, such as MSN, Gmail, etc.

One such darknet application may be Peer-to-Peer shared backups.  Imagine making an agreement with your relatives, that you would each devote 2GB of hard-drive space to keeping the family photo pool backed up.  Some clever Open Source software could keep the photo pool maintained, distributed among all of your computers.  The sharing tool could use a Facebook application for peer discovery.

You could even route new content over existing tools.  I wonder, if you could install the iLike application, could you use it to publish new content for your friends, and hook an Open Source content sharing tool into the iLike interface to handle the transfer?  iLike publishes what’s new, Facebook publishes your content share points, and the Open Source tool handles the data.

Using Facebook to publish content discovery and sharing points opens the door to federated services, allowing you to get your network out of the hands of commercial parties.  If I could publish the address of a personal server on Facebook (a server that I own, running my own services), then I could start building networks and sharing with others outside of Facebook.  And I would once again have control of my identity within those networks – I won’t have to rely on the Facebook privacy controls, or anything like that.

Just some ideas.

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