Presented without comment, I give you The Rise of Developeronomics, please forgive the damn interstitial.

It’s six pages without a full-page version; the tl;dr version is invest in developers, ideally the 10x ones because this is the only investment that will hold value over the next few years.

An interesting read for sure. I have some quibbles, but there are certainly valid points like:

. . . software skills are the most portable high-end skills on the planet.

And this one on ecosystems:

The software talent is so valuable that you pretty much have to set up open ecosystems (based on APIs, access to valuable data resources like mapping data, and open source elements) so you can keep them hooked to your broader technology ecosystem even after they leave. An ex-Microsoft engineer is valuable anywhere in the economy if he voices support for buying Microsoft wherever he goes.

And in related news, apparently the half-life of a tech worker is 15 years.

Interested to hear thoughts about the concept of developeronomics, so I’m not sharing mine just yet in order to get unbiased feedback. Find the comments.




  1. Mu gut feel is that the Forbes article is referring to a very small group of the very best developers, the equivalent of world class sportsmen or the highest earning entertainers. I think there’s a much larger ‘middle class’ of developers, plus a number who simply go through the motions as a route to management roles (which I think goes towards the second article).
    Possibly doctors and lawyers would have a similar elite level. The same would also apply to managers where there a relatively small number of people capable of running companies worth billions.

  2. This article definitely is filtered through the Valley, but that group is larger than you think. Plus, it’s one that is constantly growing. 

    For every rockstar who fades out to focus on family or travel, I’d say there are at least 100 w equal potential who haven’t even reached high school yet. Their trajectories don’t always end up in development, but this is why large companies do outreach into schools.Accessibility of tools and the rise of the smart phones have turned young development and entrepreneurism into a common occurrence among kids. 

    Age of the geek, just saying.

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