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This was my initial impression from the WDC's Software Skills Panel Forum. If you attended what were our thoughts? I am looking forward to the resulting reports and any actionable items. We need to make sure forums like this don't end with reports but keep moving the agenda forward.

http://bytemarks.org/software-skills-panel-forum/

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@linda/Daniel I like the idea of a contest for sw skills. perhaps something that puts some workshops first and then culminates in the competition.  Maybe developing a db based website for a resturaunt/culinary school.

 

wrt robotics - I'm looking into having some more workshops over the summer on robotics, cad, etc aimed at high school kids. One part goal is to give them something to do, another is to help re-build the robotics teams which graduated many of their most active members.

Perhaps a few non-profits website needs can be identified, and the students can pick the one they are interested in.  It makes it a bit more interesting and real.  Also, that way the folks might end up with a useful site.
I was in the "developing the workforce for software developers who are small businesses" group. The discussion covered a lot of territory. Points that I made were that small businesses tend to hire independent contractors for projects. So what is needed to help them is independent contractor networking (like here at Tech Hui) and match making. As far as preparing college students, providing courses on how to run a successful independent contracting business would be helpful to make them more useful to small businesses who can only afford to hire for projects, and of course to be a small business themselves.

There was some discussion about recruiting mainland companies to Hawaii, but I frankly don't understand how that would help with the workforce challenges of Hawaii's small IT firms. It has been a general economic development strategy, but I think it would be better to focus on creating a better climate for those already here.

There was general agreement on the need to improve Hawaii's internet bandwidth.

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