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Where the Highest Paying Tech Jobs Are

samzenpus posted more than 8 years ago | from the show-me-the-money dept.

574

prostoalex writes "Where would you look for a high-paying tech job? If your answer is Silicon Valley or Research Triangle, Forbes magazine suggests some other destinations. When you take the cost of living and consider the net pay adjusted for that cost, places like Montgomery, Ala., Idaho Falls, Idaho, and Fort Smith, Ark. suddenly seem quite attractive."

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FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836506)

First Post motherfuckaS$$$$$$$$$$$$$$!!!!!!

What about... (5, Funny)

flooey (695860) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836512)

...after factoring in the personal cost of having to live in Alabama or Idaho?

Re:What about... (3, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836641)

Some might see Silicon Valley and Research Triangle as carrying the personal cost.

Re:What about... (0, Troll)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836721)

Yes. These would be rednecks, people who wish to marry their own cousin, and the insane. Noone else *wants* to live in Alabama.

Re:What about... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836820)

Hey, good job with being an ignorant racist. Keep it up.

Re:What about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836690)

actually...what about the worst places to work in IT? i would rather that

Re:What about... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836695)

they can rent someone's basement to feel "at home".

Re:What about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836715)

The 9 months of terrible weather each year makes Idaho Falls really worth it.

Re:What about... (1)

jridley (9305) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836720)

That's a plus, compared to living in the high density locations. I'm not even sure I could be paid enough to take my family there.

Re:What about... (0, Troll)

xLittleP (987772) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836852)

The only reason I can see anyone moving to Alabama is if they like College Football. I know this is slashdot, but some of us went to schools with good football teams. On the other hand, if you're not a big fan of professional sports, the closest teams you have to hear about are in Atlanta.

cost of living. (4, Informative)

oyenstikker (536040) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836518)

Taking into account cost of living, try India.

Re:cost of living. (2, Insightful)

josepha48 (13953) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836545)

Sure you can get a bigger house and stuff, but what about the 'quality' of living. I like the restaurants in bigger cities personally. That and the fact that there are more jobs AFAIK.

Re:cost of living. (1)

Jherek Carnelian (831679) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836747)

Sure you can get a bigger house and stuff, but what about the 'quality' of living. I like the restaurants in bigger cities personally.

Not just a bigger house, but servants too. Maid, chef, gardner, driver. Having people do all the crap work for you makes life really nice.

Plus, Indians are the only culture to have figured out how to make vegetarian food taste good, you'll eat healthier (not that you have to stick to vegetables or anything, just that blandness will no longer be a motivation to avoid the veggies).

That and the fact that there are more jobs AFAIK.

Yeah, finding a job that lets you hire all those people is definitely not so easy. So, make a bundle here, sell your house, and then "retire" over there.

Re:cost of living. (1)

grahamsz (150076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836584)

Depends on how you measure it.

Sure you can probably afford a six bedroom house with staff on a programmers salary, but you wont be able to afford a nice car or a plasma tv.

Re:cost of living. (1)

really? (199452) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836696)

Nice cars are way overrated. Move to India and you can afford a really nice palanquin. ;)

Re:cost of living. (5, Interesting)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836686)

I've considered India, but I'm seriously looking at Mexico and Costa Rica. I'm partial to Mexico because I love Mexican culture (and I already have many friends there), but Costa Rica is really an up and coming high tech nation.

It's possible to have a very high standard of living for less money in these countries. And if your material needs are not great, you can live incredibly cheaply, save up a bunch of money and retire early.

The other thing is that, depending on how you work it, you might not be taking a cut in pay at all. All many of us need is to be at the one end of a wire. These countries have internet infrastructure, at least in the bigger towns and cities. Last time I was in Mexico, I met two people that were living there and making a living this way. One was a daytrader (remember those?) and the other had a web development company he had basically started in the U.S. When he moved to Mexico, his clients hardly noticed. He's making even more money now because he's found a lot of local talented designers and coders that work for lower pay, but he's still getting paid the same. And because he pays at the upper end of the prevailing local wage, his workers love him.

Moreover, he told me that because he lives in Mexico, he's much less likely to have to go to a day long meeting to discuss what exact shade of green should be used to maximize the branding of a particular website. Clients are less likely to fly him in to discuss trivial shit. Or they fly out to him because it's an excuse to visit Mexico.

Anyway, if you can work at the end of a wire, seriously consider some of the developing nations. I can't guarantee that you'll prosper, but I can guarantee you'll have a very interesting time.

Re:cost of living. (2, Interesting)

indiancowboy (637150) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836725)

Taking into consideration purchasing power parity (PPP), India's GDP [cia.gov] of $719.8 billion becomes $3.611 trillion. PPP adjusts the income approximately 5 times to the US Dollar. If the average salary in the US is $67,400, that is $13,480 in India's PPP terms. And the average salary for programmers in India is certainly above that. People need to understand its not about 'cheap labour'. Its just another feature of globalization.

Not attractive (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836529)

Living in Montgomery AL and installing Office on every PC in the air force does NOT sound attractive, thanks.

Re:Not attractive (2, Informative)

DeltaHat (645840) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836854)

I did a stint in that hellhole. Montgomery Alabama is hell on earth. Period. The only reason the adjusted income for tech jobs there is so high is due to the incredibly depressed state of the city. Also, the Air Force is the only real consumer of tech there, so you have almost no choice but to work for the military. Take that for what its worth to you. The government bureaucracy is hip deep and most systems are antiquated at best. Avoid it like the plague.

See how many correspond with 'Best places to live' (4, Informative)

mergy (42601) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836531)

'Best Places to Live' according to Money Mag/Rag

http://money.cnn.com/magazines/moneymag/bplive/200 6/top100/index.html [cnn.com]

1 Fort Collins, CO 128,000
2 Naperville, IL 141,600
3 Sugar Land, TX 75,800
4 Columbia/Ellicott City, MD 159,200
5 Cary, NC 106,400
6 Overland Park, KS 164,800
7 Scottsdale, AZ 226,000
8 Boise, ID 193,200
9 Fairfield, CT 57,800
10 Eden Prairie, MN 60,600
11 Plano, TX 250,100
12 Eagan, MN 63,700
13 Olathe, KS 112,100
14 West Bloomfield , MI 65,000
15 Richardson, TX 99,200
16 Gilbert, AZ 178,100
17 Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ 51,600
18 Santa Clarita, CA 172,500
19 Carrollton, TX 124,700
20 Henderson, NV 232,100
21 Bellevue, WA 117,100
22 Newton, MA 83,200
23 Sandy, UT 89,700
24 Westminster, CO 105,100
25 Ann Arbor, MI 113,300

I live in Fort Collins (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836555)

And the only jobs being created here are at the stores.

I have no idea where the people here work if they can afford to shop at all the new places.

But above all, there are only two kinds of buildings under construction here. Churches and banks.

Where do these people work???

Re:I live in Fort Collins (3, Interesting)

eln (21727) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836597)

Denver?

Seriously, the problem with these communities is one of the major reasons the cost of living is so low is because the vast majority of jobs there pay very little. Sure, there might be some relatively high-paying tech jobs, but the problem is there are only 5 tech jobs in the whole city.

Re:I live in Fort Collins (2, Interesting)

atomic-penguin (100835) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836637)

Well they must work at the bank, at the church, or they are in construction.

Re:I live in Fort Collins (3, Interesting)

AaronPSU777 (938553) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836807)

"I have no idea where the people here work if they can afford to shop at all the new places. But above all, there are only two kinds of buildings under construction here. Churches and banks. Where do these people work???"

I live in Ft. Collins also. Try HP, Poudre Valley Hospital, Eastman Kodak, Anheuser-Busch, Agilent, Celestica and Colorado State University for starters. Within a half-hour drive or so your will find IBM, Ball Aerospace, NOAA, the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Lockheed Martin, and the University of Colorado to name a few. All this is in a town within an hour or two of some of the best skiing, hiking, camping, climbing and biking in the country and a very affordable cost of living. Oh and did I mention there are several great microbreweries right in town :)

Seriously, the only people I hear rag on Ft. Collins are the ones that have lived there their whole lives and don't realize how good they have it.

Re:I live in Fort Collins (1)

DreamCoder (679179) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836817)

Yep, Fort Collins rocks. I'd move there if Boulder wasn't so much better ;-).

Re:I live in Fort Collins (2)

AaronPSU777 (938553) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836849)

Yep Boulder is much better, if you don't mind paying twice as much for your house ;)

Re:See how many correspond with 'Best places to li (1)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836563)

For the non-NC types, Cary (Corral Around Relocated Yankees) is the neighbor to Raleigh, and is home to many RTPers.

Re:See how many correspond with 'Best places to li (3, Insightful)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836608)

Some of the places on this list could be fairly okay for an educated, liberal, free-thinker type.
But a lot of those places are damn scary.

Also, it doesn't make sense that Richardson TX would draw less than half the salary of Plano TX.
I mean seriously, these are both actually the same place for anyone who would be living in that part of the Dallas metro area, and for that matter, so is Carrollton. There may be a factor related to commuting on I-35 as opposed to Central Expressway, but come on... these are all the same damn place.

Also, pointing out Gilbert Arizona as if it's really distinct from Phoenix is pretty stupid too.

$226 for Scottsdale AZ (yes, it's a separate township, but snobs like to point out that it's *Scottsdale* to avoid saying they live in Phoenix)... That is a joke. Scottsdale median home price is in the $250's still, and most of the housing that a mid-career professional would be happy with are well over the $million mark.

Or 'Best public schools in America'? (2, Interesting)

mosel-saar-ruwer (732341) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836639)


Apropros a previous poster who wanted to dis 'Bama & Idaho, how many correspond with the best public schools in America [msn.com] ?

1 Talented & Gifted Dallas Texas
2 Jefferson County IBS** Irondale Ala.
3 BASIS Charter Tucson Ariz.
4 City Honors** Buffalo N.Y.
5 Stanton College Prep** Jacksonville Fla.
6 Eastside** Gainesville Fla.
7 Suncoast Community** Riviera Beach Fla.
8 Science/Engineering Magnet Dallas Texas
9 International Academy* Bloomfield Hills
10 Academic Magnet North Charleston S.C.
11 Science Academy of South Texas Mercedes Texas
12 North Hills School** Irving Texas
13 H-B Woodlawn Arlington Va.
14 Eastern Sierra Academy Bridgeport Calif.
15 Richard Montgomery** Rockville Md.
16 Myers Park** Charlotte N.C.
17 Classen School of Advanced Studies** Oklahoma City Okla.
18 Highland Park Dallas Texas
19 Clarke County** Berryville Va.
20 Little Rock Central Little Rock Ark.
21 Hillsborough** Tampa Fla.
22 San Diego High School of International Studies* San Diego Calif.
23 John Miller-Great Neck North Great Neck N.Y.
24 Wilson Magnet** Rochester N.Y.
25 Atlantic Community** Delray Beach Fla.
ETC.


Flyover country seems to be mighty well represented on some of these lists...

Re:See how many correspond with 'Best places to li (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836642)

Wasn't that article called "Best Places to Live -- If You're a Bible-Thumping Redneck" ?

Re:See how many correspond with 'Best places to li (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836755)

I'm really not sure that's a very trustworthy list. Santa Clarita [wikipedia.org] is number 18 on the list. My sister and her husband live in Santa Clarita, and while they like it just fine, I can't say that I'd consider it a "Best Place to Live". Maybe "An OK Place to Live If You're Just Starting Out and Want to Buy a Home", but lets face it, it's still Los Angeles, just not the fun part. And it's freaking hot during the summer and extra cold during the winter. It's at a high enough elevation where they actually get snow during the winter. It's a considerable drive to any place other than the San Fernando Valley.

Maybe all those other places on the list are great or maybe it's just me, but Santa Clarita is far from ideal.

Re:See how many correspond with 'Best places to li (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836800)

I grew up in Fort Collins, CO, and I have no idea why it always makes the tops of these lists.

Some fun facts about Ft Collins:

-It is closer to Cheyenne Wyoming than Denver
-After the Matthew Shepard incident, CSU students paraded a burning effigy of him throught the streets
-It has one of the lowest ratios of blacks to whites in the entire nation

Apparently Ft Collins is not a wonderful place to live for just anyone...

Re:choose from the choices above (1)

dcalkins (992882) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836810)

Considering I was just in Idaho Falls today, I recommend you stay away. Yea... I definately recommend you stay away from the general Idaho area (I live here and MAN am I glad I'm moving soon). Going to school up here was a DUMB idea. Choose a city that you will actually be able to be happy.

I work in Parsippany-Troy Hills (1)

Captain Fallout (704318) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836833)

And while I'm sure it's a great place to live on the weekends, driving in and out of there during the week is an absolute nightmare. You have 3 major highways, 80(yes, the one that goes to San Fran,) 287, and 10 all converging in town which is a major source of traffic. There are three other smaller highways(202, 46 and 53) that get jammed up as well. My friend that I work with lives 4 miles away and it can take him 40 minutes by car some days. He's more than willing to take his bike if it's not too hot or cold. I live 16 miles away and it takes me 20 minutes because I'm coming from the opposite direction of traffic.

Maybe they are saying it's nice because Intel has a large office on Rt. 10. Or they like the Jimmy Buff's that is in the next town over. Mmmm...Italian Hot Dogs.

Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (5, Informative)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836548)

Unemployment in the Raleigh/Durham area is sub 4% (statewide is sub 5). Forget the pharm and biotech companies; we have Cisco, Symantec, Red Hat, Microsoft, GFI, and countless others. There are constantly tons of houses for sale because some many "northerners" (of which I am one, an Ohio transplant from last year) are moving down here, and cost of living is more than fair.

There are tons of tech jobs of every kind out there, especially programming positions. My wife is a teacher and the market for her is evening better than it is for me (as a network engineer/admin type).

I love Ohio, and I bleed scarlet and grey, but there is just no comparison between RTP and any major area in Ohio)

And for you elitest types (I keed!), RDP is home to the second highest percentage of PHD's (per capita) outside of Silicon Valley.

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1)

Ikester8 (768098) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836568)

Am I the only one who thought "PHD" stood for "Pointy-haired Director"?

(psst: it's Ph.D.)

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836602)

I think you were thinking of PHB!

My apologies to the doctors in the room; I just don't type Ph.D. much.

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836617)

"My wife is a teacher and the market for her is evening better than it is for me"

WTF does this mean?!?

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1, Flamebait)

qsqueeq (586979) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836830)

dat mean us kuntry foke hear in norf carolinuh kneed mo' teechin.

NC graduates less teachers per year than they need, and some of those graduates leave the the state to work. The population in RTP/Raleigh is expanding very rapidly and this is a contributing factor. Sam

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1)

Burdell (228580) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836718)

Huntsville, AL has come in high on the per-capita PhD list most years as well. ISTR Huntsville coming in at #1 some years, but I have been unable to find a definative source (local Chamber of Commerce stuff doesn't count). I can't find who publishes such a list; I guess my Google-fu is weak tonight.

Ph.D Per-Capita? (1)

drewzhrodague (606182) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836805)

So I went looking for which cities have the highest Ph.Ds per-capita, and found just about every City claiming this. Anyone got a link? (I'm in Pittsburgh, which claims the same thing.)

Re:Ph.D Per-Capita? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836815)

Depends what "PHD" stands for - Pittsburgh Hole Digger, perhaps? :-)

OK,OK, so it stands for "Polite Hair Dresser"...

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836826)

Heh. My parents live and were from the RTP. My dad wised up and started buying as much property he can since he figures it will be the next Silicon valley.

Re:Gotta love RTP (Research Triangle) (1)

DreamCoder (679179) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836840)

Hmm... I would have thought Los Alamos would have them both beat by a longshot.

Outsourcing (5, Interesting)

owlman17 (871857) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836550)

In other third world countries where these tech jobs are being outsourced to, $USD400-$600/month is very high. I live in Manila, and the minimum wage is roughly less than $USD 6.00 daily. Those who work in outsourced tech-support call centers make $300 monthly and they're very happy about it. I had a short web-design stint making about $450 monthly and I was really really happy about it, to say the least. Single people here could live like kings on that.

Re:Outsourcing (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836698)

And to think I clear 3900 USD/mo and that's not alot for me ... hehehe (it's way more than enough, just seems you always find a way to spend your money).

Of course I live in Canada so the cost of living is a bit higher than $6/day. Without a cell/net/tv you could survive on about 900/mo (rent+food+clothes) but your life would suck balls.

Tom

My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (4, Informative)

Tink2000 (524407) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836551)

As someone who lived in Idaho Falls, Idaho, I strongly advise against it unless you think man-made falls are cool and love a few of the Temple at night, and like the idea of living in a city that has nothing around it for miles except scenery, where the tallest building is nine stories tall and it's a hotel.

I lived there for a year and pretty much loathed every moment of it. Of course, I came there from Atlanta, Georgia, so ... it was a bit of culture shock for me.

If you're going to live in Montgomery, you might as well consider Huntsville as well. Although it might be slightly harder to get a job there as everyone has some sort of technical background for the most part, it's a fairly agreeable city and not at all representative of the rest of Alabama.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (0, Offtopic)

Harmonious Botch (921977) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836570)

I've loved a few of the Temple at night....strangely enough they seem to get excommunicated soon afterwards.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836631)

Yeah, I don't know where that typo came in from ... it's been a long week and since I'm in college retail it's only going to get longer for a few more weeks.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836664)

Damn! If I had mod points today I'd mod your post up solely for your signature!

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (1, Offtopic)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836586)

like the idea of living in a city that has nothing around it for miles except scenery, where the tallest building is nine stories tall and it's a hotel.

Knock down that damned building and I'm in.

KFG

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836596)

s/few/view.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (5, Interesting)

Burdell (228580) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836693)

As someone who lives in Huntsville (born and raised here) and also does some business in Montgomery, I'd have to agree. I'm not aware of a whole lot of tech jobs available in Montgomery; there's always demand in Huntsville (especially as another 7-12 thousand Army and contracter jobs come to Huntsville in the next few years). I don't know how the cost of living compares (Huntsville is a good bit lower than the Atlanta area though). The "metro" areas around Montgomery and Huntsville are about the same size IIRC, but Huntsville has a lot more "outside" influence (German rocket scientists in the 1950s and people from all over the world since).

Huntsville can be an odd place sometimes; mixing rocket scientists and rednecks has interesting results.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836768)

The most important quality of life question for Idaho Falls:

Can you buy booze on Sunday?

(Personally, I'm a non-drinker, but I don't want to live in a town where people can't get drunk on Sunday if they want.)

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (1)

Tink2000 (524407) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836844)

No. You can't.
However: Idaho Falls is the one place I've ever been where you could buy cigarettes by the each instead of by the pack.

Since I posted above, I got to thinking more about life in Idaho Falls when I was there (88-89) and how that might differ today. Seeing as how I live in a relatively isolated college town now, where we have to drive 30 mins to the next "big" town (if you count Roanoke as "big", that is), I'd have to guess it's not so much different than Blacksburg, Virginia. If I want something obscure, I get it from the 'net.

I just hated all that snow and nothing.

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (1)

shadowbearer (554144) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836775)

Miles of scenery trumps miles of strip malls IMHO.

SB

Re:My views on Idaho Falls and Alabama in general (1)

engineerofsorts (692517) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836816)

Consider, however, that rating girls in Idaho is much simpler--none of this 1 to 10 stuff-- just Grade 1, Grade 2, or culls--it is "famous for potatoes", after all.

"...and Fort Worth, Ark..." (2, Informative)

DreadfulGrape (398188) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836553)

Without having RTFA I can tell you that's probably Fort Smith, Arkansas (or Fort Worth, Texas, though that seems less likely).

Lol, huge mistake (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836594)

The editors don't even RTFA.

and Fort Smith, Ark., for instance.

How careless can you get? Even a 5 year old would've caught that.

It just shows the editors care only about the $$$$.

Re:"...and Fort Worth, Ark..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836598)

That's the first thing that I thought of when I read this summary. So I was glad to find your post and mod it up. So hello, fellow-Arkansan. Or at least, hello knowledgeable-about-Arkansas-person!

And yep, BTW, the TFA does say "Fort Smith, Ark."

Re:"...and Fort Worth, Ark..." (1)

Guy Harris (3803) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836723)

the TFA does say "Fort Smith, Ark."

And it's also printed on receipts from local ATM machines.

Re:"...and Fort Worth, Ark..." (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836705)

Carpetbagging Stranger: Can I take this road to Fort Smith?

Arkie Fiddler: Ain't no use.

Carpetbagging Stranger: Why not?

Arkie Fiddler: They already got one. Now go away before I taunt you a second time.

KFG

Highest paying yes, but highest growth?? (5, Insightful)

osho_gg (652984) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836557)

There are interesting questions here. One could go for one of these highest paying jobs in obscure locations where few companies are there. However, what is the growth potential in such locations? How many companies are there to work for in such locations that can pay high salaries for specialized skills? How many companies can pay more than 100k in places like Idaho Falls, ID? And, what happens if that company goes bust/one is laid off in such areas?

I dislike the high cost of living, traffic, unaffordability of houses etc. in places such as Silicon Valley. But there are lot more companies where one can work for with decent salary. One's chances of finding another job with close to maximum salary in one's field are lot higher there without having to move.

These are not just idle concerns. I have been asking many such questions to myself recently as I am not in high-tech area such as Silicon Valley. There are no easy answers to such questions. These become even more difficult once one has family, house etc. and has established roots in one place.

Osho

Re:Highest paying yes, but highest growth?? (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836682)

Has it occurred to you that in a place with a lower cost of living than Silicon Valley that you might actually be able to live better with a less than maximum salary?

Re:Highest paying yes, but highest growth?? (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836812)

These become even more difficult once one has family, house etc. and has established roots in one place.

Have you thought about finding someplace you like and then growing where you plant?

KFG

Re:Highest paying yes, but highest growth?? (2, Insightful)

notshannon (704145) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836876)

At 33, I am in the earlier part of my career.

As a younger person, living in a cheap locale
commits me to living on that economic scale for
the rest of my life.

My "money scale" is roughly proportional to my income.

If my salary in Central New Jersey is double that in
Cortland, NY, then my company contribution of 5% of my
salary or so to retirement is, well, double in NJ.

Ditto with the cost of a lot of things. The slosh in
my budget is larger, too. (Unfortunately, real estate
purchase is more than double.)

Once I've saved my war chest, at least the bulk of
what I'll submit to the angels of compound return,
then I could move to a lower cost of living area
and be ahead of the game. But the reverse direction
is not affordable.

Good luck finding a job in Middle Nowhere (1)

heroine (1220) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836566)

You might as well write an essay on how Pluto has the highest salaries because there's no competition for real estate on Pluto.

Re:Good luck finding a job in Middle Nowhere (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836648)

Pluto has the lowest salaries due to the lack of real estate, high relocation cost and unsustainable living costs.

Re:Good luck finding a job in Middle Nowhere (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836814)

You might as well write an essay on how Pluto has the highest salaries because there's no competition for real estate on Pluto.

Pluto is great, it's just the commute that kills you. For those of you who say work from home, neither Comcast nor AT&T have decided to roll out high-speed internet yet.

Collateral Damage (5, Interesting)

NoHandleBars (10204) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836576)

I once oversaw moving a firms's HQ and IT functions from Silicon Valley to San Antonio, TX because of the "math" some white collar genius put together like this Forbes nonsense. Sure, the "average" wage was one-half of what it was in Palo Alto, but because of the "quality" of local talent, we ended up hiring THREE TIMES as many staff to do the same amount of work. (For the math-challenged, that meant productivity sucked by 50%.) This wasn't just a drain on company resources, but on the few people who DID know their chops and had to hoist it in for the dullards. Those that made the move and saw the disaster had to in turn move completely out of the area to restore sanity to their careers. And the "icing on the cake" is that San Antonio is the only place I've stood hip deep in mud and had sand blow in my face. No thanky-thanky.

Ummmm... no (0, Redundant)

supabeast! (84658) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836585)

"When you take the cost of living and consider the net pay adjusted for that cost, places like Montgomery, Ala., Idaho Falls, Idaho, and Fort Worth, Ark. suddenly seem quite attractive."

Not if you consider the costs of therapy that go along with leaving civilization to live in backwaters lik Alabama, Idaho, or Arkansas.

Re:Ummmm... no (1)

jb_02_98 (636753) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836606)

Actually, I live in Idaho. It is a little backwards sometimes (the place I live in just got highspeed internet about 3 years ago.) but it does pay well. It's hard to find a good tech, so when people do, they are more than willing to pay for it. I started a little tech business and I have been able to survive and keep myself busy without even having a storefront (finally got one a month ago after being in business for a year.)

Re:Ummmm... no (1)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836615)

Some people would say the same about SanFran, NYC, Chicago, etc.....

Re:Ummmm... no (1)

SaDan (81097) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836716)

I moved from the Boulder, CO area to work in the suburbs of Chicago.

I fucking miss living in rural Indiana. Cities and the morons who like to pack in like sardines, deal with all this smog and pollution, and pay the insane housing and living costs associated with "city" life can all go to hell.

Give me cell based internet, a porch swing, and a laptop out in the middle of no where, and I'd be happy as could be.

I would gladly take a pay cut to go back to work in a rural setting.

NB: Fort Smith, not Forth Worth (1)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836591)

I was excited there for a minute...

Re:NB: Fort Smith, not Forth Worth (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836783)

I've heard that D/FW sucks. Did I hear wrong?

The only place in Texas that sounds livable to me (again, from the reports of others) is Austin. Plus, I think I'd like the adrenaline rush every time I walked within view of the bell tower.

There's a reason it's cheap to live in those place (1)

Rix (54095) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836600)

No one *wants* to, so there's no competition.

Research Triangle Park (1)

Yonder Way (603108) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836619)

Why would anyone assume that pay rates are great here? ("here" being relative, as I work in RTP) The cost of living here is so low compared to the northeastern cities that most of our workers immigrate from that there wouldn't be a lot of justification for high pay rates.

The pay rates here are less than my "home" city of Philadelphia. But the cost of living is so much lower that I actually get a nice net raise out of the relocation. Still, if you are just after a big income, this is not the region to look in.

The Gump? No thanks! (1)

AubieTurtle (743744) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836628)

The nice thing about Montgomery is that two interstates intersect there, making it easier to get away. The tech jobs are mostly civilian jobs on the military base. The only culture to speak of is the Alabama Shakespeare Festival (which I will admit is surprisingly good). The nightlife is terrible. The current mayor is a hundred times better than the previous good ol' boy but it is still a bland boring place. You'll need the extra money you make to make frequent trips out of there.

They forgot one (1)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836630)

Anywhere within 30-40 miles of Washington D.C. As long as you have lived a decently clean life and aren't showing signs of severe character flaws, the job security alone is worth it.

Does that (1)

avatar4d (192234) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836681)

take into account that there is not as much to do in those locations and hence to frivolously spend your $ on?

Work from anywhere (1)

greg_barton (5551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836687)

The small company I work for is based in Florida. I live in Dallas. Other employees live in Atlanta, LA, and a few Florida cities. The modern IT company does not need to be based anywhere in particular.

Yeah but... (1)

methodic (253493) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836710)

You also need to take into the account your surroundings and environment... I'd rather pay $1500/mo for a 1 bedroom apartment in Boston, a very progressive and historic place to live, instead of Alabama or Arkansas, where civil liberties and evolution stalled out hundreds of years ago.

Re:Yeah but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836792)

you must be one of them homo fellers

How about Iraq? (2, Interesting)

Digi-John (692918) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836714)

According to a reliable friend of mine, the starting salary for IT jobs in Iraq is around $100,000 a year. He says you don't really need much training, you just need to be good with computers and willing to take risks. Of course, working in Iraq is pretty certain to end up more unpleasant than working in Idaho or Arkansas.

Re:How about Iraq? (1)

Trieuvan (789695) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836834)

but how much you have to pay for bodyguards ?

Telecommute! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836757)

I make over $150K/year telecommuting for a couple of companies who have their physical presences in more expensive areas. I'm just an intranet monkey (PHP+whatever db), so it's not like I'm a l33t Oracle DBA or something...

Intriguing (2, Insightful)

glwtta (532858) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836760)

Lets see: cheaper housing + cheaper food/necessities + NOTHING ELSE TO SPEND MONEY ON = lower cost of living.

Sad as it is, the expensive places to live are often expensive for a reason - people want to live there.

Re:Intriguing (2, Funny)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836835)

Lets see: cheaper housing + cheaper food/necessities + NOTHING ELSE TO SPEND MONEY ON = lower cost of living.

Oh come on... We are nerds... We buy everything online and don't need to go out to buy stuff... As long as we can get borad band we'll be fine...

We can get broad band at these places right?

What? We can't... Well to hell with them!

No jobs in da U.P., eh? (1)

thoolie (442789) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836764)

According to the map at forbes (http://images.forbes.com/media/2006/07/31/techjob smap_16.jpg),

I guess that da U.P. doesn't register. Furthermore, it appreas that Canada keeps moving closer....I'll miss the big lake...

Re:No jobs in da U.P., eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15836861)

No jobs dere, eh. Just those at Mead-Wesvaco-whatevernameitisnow, and Quinnesec. That's why I live in Indiana now and work in Louisville, KY. I may live down here, but I will always be a Yooper.

Say yah to da Yoopee, eh?

Desperate need for knowledge (1)

DeathElk (883654) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836777)

Tuttle Oklahoma [centos.org] perhaps?

What those places lack (1)

kaufmanmoore (930593) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836788)

Is championship (or any?) hockey! Its the intangables that count, give me RTP.

None here... (1)

aitala (111068) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836794)

I know where the jobs aren't... State College, PA...

E

Re:None here... (2, Funny)

kaufmanmoore (930593) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836813)

just bide your time, football coach will have to open up eventually.

Move to Idaho... and Get Stuck There (4, Insightful)

razvedchik (107358) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836798)

The biggest factor for me is to consider the possibility that if your job goes south (project ends, company folds, you don't like your boss), then you are stuck in the middle of nowhere. If you are relocating, you need to understand that at some point you will need to move again.

If you are used to an environment where you can lose your job today and have a new one by the end of the week, then you will be shocked when you spend 6 months unemployed.

Now don't get me wrong, I grew up in Idaho, but you need to realize that it is a complete backwater. =)

Oh, really? (0, Troll)

Keyslapper (852034) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836829)

You've obviously never been to Arkansas ...

Yah. If I were still Catholic, I'd consider my 7 years purgatory already served.

Montgomery? (3, Insightful)

siwelwerd (869956) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836871)

The article's selection of cities seems random at best. Huntsville by far has the largest tech industry base in the state, and is roughly the same cost of living as Montgomery. Growing up here, roughly 40-50% of the kids I knew had at least one parent in some form of engineering. The defense/aerospace industry is huge here, so there are plenty of SW Engineering opportunities.

Take it from some that lives in Montgomery... (4, Interesting)

jascat (602034) | more than 8 years ago | (#15836874)

This place sucks! The job market is bad and you're going to be pretty much stuck working for either the state government or the DoD if you can find someone that has the right connections to get you a job. If you don't have a secret clearance, your chances seriously go down. Tech here just ain't it. Most places in Texas have lower costs of living with larger populations and better job markets. That's why I plan to head there in 2008.

I've GOT to get out of this redneck filled, racist, little freaking town!
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