No talent in the Philippines? Yeah, right. – rant

| issues, philippines

SpecOps Labs thinks there's not enough IT talent in the Philippines. That's why they had to outsource their development, they said.

If they had a hard time finding talent, it was because geeks stay away
from companies that suck.

Let me tell you what this geek thinks about SpecOps.

When my teacher asked me two years ago if I wanted to work on an open
source project, of course I was interested. I checked out
SpecOps' website, eager to find out about their technical vision and who else would be working on the project. What did I find?

Buzzwords. Egotistic claims. A schedule straight out of a marketer's
dream and a developer's nightmare. I knew then and there that
SpecOps was a company that had no clue.

In the geek world, clue is extremely important. If you want to attract
the best talent, you need to have clue. You need to know what you're
talking about. You _definitely_ need to show that you're not all hype
and no code.

I told my teacher that SpecOps gave me the heebiejeebies and that
there was no way in heck I was going to touch the project.

I wasn't the only geek who smelled something fishy. As soon as
SpecOps' claims hit mailing lists and newsgroups, geeks around
the world ripped SpecOps to pieces. Sure, SpecOps tried to
do damage control, but geek trust is hard to regain.

SpecOps may razzle and dazzle venture capitalists and journalists
with a quick show-and-tell, but they don't have enough clue to get
geeks on board.

Lack of IT talent in the Philippines? Yeah, right. They should blame
it on the fact that we've got clue, and they just don't.

So here are three tips for companies who want to have clue.

1. DO contribute to the open source community.

Give credit and code as often and as publicly as you can. Build your
reputation by contributing patches and posting messages on mailing
lists. That's whre we'll factcheck you to find out if you know what
you're talking about. If you've got the geek power to influence an
open source project like WINE, then we'll believe that you can make a
commercial product out of it. If the first time the open source
community hears from you is through the press release saying you've
invented a solution that could change the world, don't blame us if we
laugh at you.

2. DO NOT contract your website to frustrated adventure novel writers.

It's a pity you can't find all their old press releases on the website
any more, but here's a snippet for your enjoyment:

The story behind David reads like an adventure novel: In
July of 2002, news of SpecOpS Labs' discovery was leaked from
Oracle-Philippines to Microsoft in Redmond WA. Microsoft immediately
relayed a communiqué to an Asian based Private Investigator requesting
detailed info on the SpecOpS Labs Platform; days later, news of the
investigation was intercepted by a friendly asset and delivered to
SpecOpS Labs. In August, the Philippines' top computer scientist & MIT
alumni scrutinized the David blueprint and certified its validity; a
few weeks later, a high-ranking ASEAN IBM Official learned of the
discovery and its certification and requested a meeting with SpecOpS

Sheer hilarity. The rest of the text that's still on the website just
smacks of ego and marketing.

3. DO take care of your geeks.

A tech company should focus more on its geeks than on its venture
capitalists. Assemble a great team and you can find funding to grow.
The best geeks don't answer want ads or cold calls. We're all off
doing something interesting.

Here's how to get our attention:

  1. Contribute to the community. That'll get you onto our radar.
  2. Have a geek-friendly website. That'll get us curious.
  3. Take care of the geeks you've got. Impress them and they'll draw in more geeks. Geek testimonials count a lot.

Don't be like SpecOps. Be clueful, and you'll find plenty of
geeks doing amazing things in the Philippines.

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