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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Can you give me a few examples of IT jobs that cannot be moved to another country, and why?

    Exclude the ones where physical and cultural proximity is important -- requirements, sales, UI design, customer hand-holding.
    • Can you give me a few examples of IT jobs that cannot be moved to another country, and why?

      Exclude the ones where physical and cultural proximity is important -- requirements, sales, UI design, customer hand-holding.

      A good portion of government and defense related IT jobs cannot be moved offshore. Some of that work is done by offshore subcontractors, but certainly not all of it. And there is a limit to how much can be sent offshore due to political, legal, security, or privacy issues. With added r

      • Hang on a minute. I thought the gist of your post was that offshorable IT == lower-skill IT. So I asked for examples of IT jobs that were so high skill they could not be exported.

        Now your objections are more about the whole outsourcing concept, which applies within as well as outside the USA. (Hawaii is quite a few timezones away.)

        Did I misunderstand your original post? Otherwise I'm still waiting for examples.
        • So I asked for examples of IT jobs that were so high skill they could not be exported.

          Actually, I was arguing the inverse -- it's not that high-skill jobs will not be sent offshore, but rather the jobs that will be sent offshore in pursuit of lower labor costs are low skill IT jobs.

          For example, accounting systems are a very well-understood domain for IT. Yet each large company's accounting system has unique wrinkles. At the very large end of the spectrum, it's not a problem amenable to a generalize

          • by brev (1827) on 2003.12.28 18:05 (#26854)

            I think I see what you were saying now. So the limits to outsourcing have to do with the separability of IT from domain knowledge. Since the domain knowledge resides in the USA, the more interesting jobs will reside in the USA.

            That may be true for the short term, but I'm not sure about the long term.

            • one day soon if not already, important customers/markets will not be American.
            • even for American customers, domain knowledge isn't all that tied to the USA. American companies consult around the world too. Are these problems insuperable for them?
            • outsourcers in places like India are not going to stand still. Every system they build, some of the domain knowledge transfers overseas. Today, Indian programmers do 'bolt-tightening'. Tomorrow, look for them to want to move up the food chain. They'll do whatever it takes to get there, and all they have to do is be slightly lower in cost.

            You're speaking to a guy who's half-Indian and has a lot of relatives in software and engineering. (I'm one of the least engineerish of the whole family, actually.) Over the holidays this has been a hot topic at my parents' house. Some of my relatives were doing outsourcing before any of you ever heard of it. One cousin has been offered a very tempting position back home, much better than anythiing available here -- but his family is a bit too entrenched in the USA now to consider it. So you can see that the next generation will have a much easier time doing a 180 upon graduation from the prestigious American schools, and taking all that cutting edge talent back to India.

            Our general perception is that what India can do is very much underestimated. even today.

            Anyway, this doesn't necessarily invalidate your point -- maybe some things will not be easily outsourced. But at that point, I expect Indian companies to emerge that can swallow the entire project whole.

            • So the limits to outsourcing have to do with the separability of IT from domain knowledge. Since the domain knowledge resides in the USA, the more interesting jobs will reside in the USA.

              That's a good chunk of it. Some work will remain here (or in Canada, or Switzerland, or ...) because there's a critical mass of learning and people available to crack a problem. There's no reason why India or China can't become the leading center of computational astrophysics, but NASA Goddard will probably remain on