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Deconstructing a Critique of Silicon Valley

Over at Slashdot, in a posting entitled “Places Rated, Skeptically,” the editors sorted through more than 500 comments about a previous item

suggesting that, after accounting for local price differences, the best-paid tech jobs aren’t in Silicon Valley or other areas well known for computer jobs, but rather in smaller cities around the country.

What did they draw from the responses?

Quality of life is overall more important than salary, though, and it isn’t an easy thing to measure. Several readers pointed to reasons why the most expensive places to live get to be so expensive, and why (for those who can afford to live there in the first place) locations like Silicon Valley are often worth their premiums.

The essay is interesting by itself, but I wanted to note the technique Slashdot is using: pulling the most relevant items — that is, the ones that add real value to the conversation — out of the mass of comments in a way that makes it easy for the rest of us to get that extra value. It’s surfacing signal from noise.

2 Comments on “Deconstructing a Critique of Silicon Valley”

  1. #1 Anonymous
    on Aug 5th, 2006 at 1:50 pm

    This is one thing I really like about Slashdot.

  2. #2 Jon Garfunkel
    on Aug 10th, 2006 at 8:28 am

    Huffington Post has done this now as well. It remains to be studied whether this can best be determined by crowds or editors. If the former, how would the technology work; if the latter, what is the average time & expense for doing so.

    But this is indeed the next frontier of online deliberation (though, it has been for a decade now).